Takagi Manpei and Shinpei, twin voice actors who voice Yuuto and Yuugo respectively, were interviewed on the 8/2 episode of Animemashite. You can watch it on Youtube right here, starting from the 3:33 mark! Catch it quick, it’ll only be available until 15/2.
During their segment, they talked about their experience so far as voice actors. I’ve tried my best to transcribe what they said down below. I kinda omitted some of the hosts’ questions (sorry (・・;)) and a few inconsequential bits but kept all the fun and relevant stuff!
Some black haired, tan skinned, throwback Takagi Bros goodness 4 ya! 0(^-^)0
So not only your looks are similar, but your actions are also often unconsciously synchronized, too!? When they look at a picture from their childhood, they’re similar to the point of arguing “this is me”, “no, it’s not, that’s you” because they can’t even tell the difference. But now, their faces are clearly different. “I think it started changing around junior high school,” said Manpei. By the way, Shinpei said, “Even though we live separately now, when I start feeling bad, I find out that Manpei also randomly had the same symptoms the day before. Or when it comes to clothes, we’ll buy the exact same pair of jeans,” so it seems that there really is a strong, unconscious link! (*surprised*)
The same or different!? Comparing twins
☆Eye☆sight Manpei - 1.5 Shinpei - 1.5
☆Mouth☆width Manpei - 6 cm (2.36 in) Shinpei - 5.7 cm (2.24 in)
☆Foot☆size Manpei - 27 cm (10.63 in) Shinpei - 26.5 cm (10.43 in)
☆Hand☆size Manpei – length: 18.3 cm (7.2 in); width: 9.4 cm (3.7 in) Shinpei – length: 18.8 cm (7.4 in); width: 10.7 cm (4.2 in)
+ Shinpei has a scar above his left eye, and it seems that’s their main distinguishing point. For their eye shape, Manpei’s eyes curve up at the corners while Shinpei’s are a little more rounded.
+ Manpei’s face shape is sharper while Shinpei’s has a softer look. Also, Manpei’s lips are thinner and firmer and Shinpei’s are plump and cute <3
+ Their fingers are the same shape, but Shinpei’s are more meaty. Maybe because he holds a tennis racket in the musical!? Manpei’s slim hands suit his “fantastic technique” <3
+ Manpei’s feet are just a little bigger. However, their shape is exact, from their big toes to their small and cute baby ones, each toe is just a little shorter than the last. Their nail shapes are also the same. Coincidentally, they’re both wearing anklets ♪
~Twin Timeline~ Sports, first love, work – they experienced the same things at the same time
1985 October 22 - They were born in Nagoya City, Aichi Prefecture. 1994 - They moved into a public elementary school in 3rd grade. 1995 - They had their first love in elementary school. 1998 - They entered junior high school and both started basketball. 2000 - In their 3rd year of junior high school (9th grade), they started works as models. 2004 - After their high school graduation, they both aimed at moving to Tokyo to become actors.
+ Pic 1: Shinpei was born premature at 1900g.(4lbs 19oz). “Right after I was born, I got pneumonia.” (Shinpei) It seems his parents were really worried (T T)
+ Pic 2: Around 2-3 years old, they went to their big sister’s Sports Day. “We would cheer her on by calling out ‘Bi~ig siste~er!’” (Manpei)
+ Pic ¾: This is from their pre-school days. The one giving the peace sign is Manpei. When he was told to look at the camera, he posed because he loved pictures <3
+ Pic 5: This is also from their pre-school days. Manpei is on the left, and Shinpei is on the right. “Both of our parents worked, so we often went to our Grandma’s house.” (Manpei)
+ Pic 6: This was taken with their friend from their International School. “Around this time, we almost never spoke Japanese *laugh*” (Shinpei)
What got you into show business? Manpei: We modeled in Nagoya. A friend of our parents saw us and said “Are you interested in letting them model?” That was in our 3rd year of junior high school.
What made you want to be actors? Shinpei: We were maybe 17? And we had the thought, “We want to go to Tokyo…”
So you graduated high school and joined a company… Shinpei to do a popular musical and Manpei to do the well-liked Sentai show! Shinpei: I decided to do the musical around May or June last year. Manpei: I also applied, but I failed 2 times *crushed* Shinpei: I auditioned the next year and we had a said, “We absolutely have to stand on the stage together!” Manpei: But at the end, I failed… and then my manager told me, “You passed to the last audition of Sentai, so you should fight off your disappointment!” *cries* Shinpei: I was also extremely disappointed, so I thought “I’ll do it, too!” and we both researched for the role every day. Manpei: Then I became a superhero and I stand in front of kids and make-believe… I did what I could do.
It looks like you battled each other to win your roles! Manpei: We’re each other’s best rival. Shinpei: I watch Gekiranger every week, and it’s obvious that Manpei’s acting is improving, so I’m also motivated ♪ Manpei: But because we’re twins, I don’t want us to be seen as the same. I want to act in roles that only I can do! Shinpei: I want us to become actors that each have their own particular style!
STUDY The scholar is not who you’d think!?
Which one of you was better at studying? Shinpei: I was better at studying. Like my musical character ♪ I seem like the idiot, but I taught Manpei (it’s my strong point!) This guy says things like “fantastic technique” but he’s much more stupid than me *laugh* Manpei: *bowing his head in what seems like shame* It’s not that I’m bad at it, but compared to Shinpei, I’m just inferior. But it was annoying, so when I thought in high school, “I’ll do it right and study hard”… I won! *proud* When the class rankings came out, and I beat out Shinpei, I was super happy! So to everyone that thought “Manpei’s (ranking) is lower than Shinpei’s,” I had this feeling like “Hey, look at that!” ♪
Was that only a one time thing? Manpei: Yep, and then I thought “Ah, that’s good enough ♪,” and was overtaken again *laugh* Shinpei: But through all 3 years of high school, we were in the same class, and Manpei was the Class President the whole time, while I was the Vice President. Manpei: When I became a 1st year student (10th grade), I went to class and the homeroom teacher looked at my face and said, “Hey, will you be the Class President?” I was surprised, but it was a good experience.
LOVE They both claim that the other was more popular *laugh*
Who was more popular? Manpei & Shinpei: Him *they point at each other at the same time*
And did you both like the same girl? Shinpei: All the time! In elementary school, Manpei liked the girl I also thought was cute, but when I listened to the rumors going around, I gave up. And later, I got a love letter from an older girl student that said “Thank you,” but when I looked, it was addressed, “To Manpei”… *crushed* Manpei: But he was more popular!
When was your first love? Shinpei: In 4th grade. Manpei: Me, too. There was a really popular girl, and my friend also liked her, and when I heard about his feelings, I wouldn’t let him know that I liked her, too. I said, “I’m rooting for you!” and chose our friendship (over love)…. But my first year in junior high school, that same girl confessed to me! I’d liked her that whole time, so I was really surprised, but since my friend liked her, I turned her down… *crushed* Shinpei: Wow, he’s an idiot… I never told my first love (about my feelings). It’s probably a dirty thing to say, but she had really pretty legs *laugh* She was really kind, too. But it ended in unrequited love *crushed*
SPORTS Their differing strong points are easily recognizable.
You’re probably good at the same sports, right? Manpei: Yeah, we both do surfing, basketball and soccer, and we started at the same time.
Which of you is more physically fit? Manpei: In junior high school, we joined the basketball team, but I was the one chosen first as a regular player, in my 1st year (7th grade).
And Shinpei? Shinpei: I was also chosen in my 1st year. But this guy’s so good he can do the jump shot! However, there was a time during this match when I had the ball and he wanted me to pass him the ball; so when he started going “hey, hey!” I thought, “If I’m going to pass him the ball so he can do a jump shot, I’M going to be the one to decide to pass it!” *laugh* Manpei: But Shinpei is faster than I am. He can do 50m (54.7 yards) in about 5.9 seconds, right? I can do it in close to 6 seconds, too, though. Shinpei: Yeah, I was really fast! In our junior high school long distance competition, I was rising in the top 10 standings, but by the time we were in our 3rd year (9th grade), it was a dead heat. Manpei: But I lost *crushed* Shinpei: Since the girl Manpei liked was cheering him and saying “Do your best, Manpei! <3” he was like, “Damnit! You wrecked it, you bastard!” *laugh*
RELATION Reliable Manpei spoils Shinpei ♪
So you’re really close, huh? Manpei: Yeah, we are. After I started Sentai until about December of last year, we lived together. But this guy wouldn’t do the chores and stuff properly! *laugh* Shinpei: Manpei’s bossy and he sounds like our parents. Manpei: I would have to fold both mine and Shinpei’s laundry. One time he was watching TV, and even when I said “hey, help me with this,” he ignored me. So when I said, “Look, come here and do this!” he suddenly gets up and kicks over the laundry I’d folded! I was like “Wha~at!? *angry*”! Shinpei: I do things at my own pace, and I’ll do it when I feel like doing it, so even though I said “I’ll do it later, just leave mine to the side,” he interrupted me and started fussing so I knocked over the whole pile of folded clothing! *laugh*
Well, how do you like living separately? Manpei: You see, now that we live apart, my house is squeaky clean! Shinpei: Because Manpei left and I stayed in our 2-person house, Manpei’s room is still there. Since it’s not only my house, and so that it’s ready for Manpei to come back at any time, I keep it really clean. I even Fabreeze Manpei’s room ♪ Manpei: So I thought, “Oh, he can do it.” I was just spoiling him *amazed*
In 2005, he entered show biz as a model. In 2007, he was cast as GekiBlue / Fukami Retsu in Jyuken Sentai Gekiranger and he made an explosive debut as an actor.
~Questionaire~ Please tell us about your best summer memory to this point. When I went to Hawaii and went surfing! It was the greatest feeling. You suddenly get a 1 week summer vacation. So, what do you do, where at, and with who? I’d visit my family! That, or travel overseas. I want to go to Hawaii and go surfing ☆ If you had to lose weight for a role, what kind of diet would you try? First of all, muscle training!! I’d sweat!! That, and Billie’s Boot Camp ☆ *laugh* What’s the most relaxing place in your house? Why do you like it? Hmm~ the bath, I think, is the best place for me to calm down. I can hit the “reset” button there. What challenge do you privately think about wanting to try? I want to try martial arts. I want to become a strong guy so I can challenge many different types of roles. So really, I want to challenge myself in various roles.
~Psychology Test~ A: You leave a forest and come to the ocean. As you walk along the beach, you find a shell peaking out of the sand. What kind of shell is it? 1- A thorny shell 2- A closed clam shell 3- A small, cute shell 4- A narrow, pointed shell. (3) B: You pick up the shell. Then what do you do? 1- You hold it to your ear 2- You make a necklace 3- You throw it back into the ocean. (3) C: At that time, what’s the ocean like? (It’s dyed with sunset, quiet, and I’m the only one there. It feels as if I can talk with the sea.)
In 2005, he entered show biz as a model. In 2006, he became popular playing the part of Momoshiro Takeshi in The Prince of Tennis Musical.
~Questionaire~ Please tell us about your best summer memory to this point. When I went to Hawaii and went surfing! It was the best. You suddenly get a 1 week summer vacation. So, what do you do, where at, and with who? I’d go on a trip overseas with all of my friends. If you had to lose weight for a role, what kind of diet would you try? I wouldn’t! I’m trying really hard right now to build up my body. But if I did, I would go on the natto diet. What’s the most relaxing place in your house? Why do you like it? The living room. I love the sofa, and on my days off, I spend 80% of my time there! What challenge do you privately think about wanting to try? 5-man indoor soccer. Because I was on the soccer team in elementary school!!
~Psychology Test~ A: You leave a forest and come to the ocean. As you walk along the beach, you find a shell peaking out of the sand. What kind of shell is it? 1- A thorny shell 2- A closed clam shell 3- A small, cute shell 4- A narrow, pointed shell. (4) B: You pick up the shell. Then what do you do? 1- You hold it to your ear 2- You make a necklace 3- You throw it back into the ocean. (3) C: At that time, what’s the ocean like? (An ocean dyed with sunset.)
Message Manpei -> Shinpei Just because we’re twins, doesn’t mean I want us to seem the same. Let’s work together to become actors that can do different things!
Shinpei -> Manpei When you got the part of GekiBlue, I was as happy as if it had happened to me! You’re my rival but you’re also my very best friend!
Shinpei has tried living apart from Manpei, but says, “It’s horribly lonely…… when I go home, there are a lot of Manpei’s things there, but he’s not. I understand now just how much Manpei does for me.” Manpei says, “In elementary school, Shinpei was more level-headed than me, but since we moved to Tokyo, when we visit our family, our parents tell me, ‘Please watch out for Shinpei, because we’re worried about him.’ He’s like Jan (from Gekiranger), just like Jan! *laugh*” In other words, Manpei continues to act like the older brother and Shinpei continues to act like the younger brother. The relationship has balanced out so that level-headed Manpei spoils mischievous Shinpei <3
We first must thank our loyal and hard-working fellow fangirl dancingstars123 who has so graciously volunteered her time to make English subs for the ‘Maria Magdalena 2’ musical starring Manpei and Shinpei as “Emily” and “Shirley”.
When you get to the page, just scroll down a bit and the play will be there broken up into 4 parts. Please watch it and let me know if you have any problems. Personally speaking, this play is probably my favorite piece of work by the twins, and now it’ll be even better because I’ll understand more than 10% of the dialouge \^0^/
Enjoy! And once again a big thanks to dancingstars123for providing us with the subs! ^_^
Family: mother, father, assortment of dogs, twin brother and at least one older sister.
(I’m going to try and stay as accurate as possible with this trivia, I’m going based on translated material from blog entries, tv interviews, magazine interviews, etc. In the future if it turns out something I wrote was incorrect, I’ll go back and correct myself)
This is all gonna be pretty random, just to warn you…lol
- likes “tsundere” girls; basically girls who kind of bully him and tease him when they’re in front of other people, but turn nice and sweet when it’s just the two of them alone. (For the record, this describes Manpei’s personality almost perfectly X-P)
-(This is really random now) During an appearance with Manpei on an Ikemen variety show, he had to truthfully respond to a fake text message from “a girl who he had just started dating”. The question basically was the fake girlfriend saying that she wanted to buy some cute underwear but didn’t know what to buy and was asking him for his advice. Shinpei responded with something like:
“Anything you’d like, I’ll like, but I think I’d like something black the best. Wait for me and I’ll come meet you and we’ll pick them out together. I want to see you, even if it’s for a little while ^_^”
Final Result: Shinpei ended up winning that round X-D
-3 things Manpei doesn’t like about Shinpei: Shinpei is egocentric, doesn’t think of anything, and is late to get ready in the morning.
-Attended an American School in Japan with Manpei when they were younger, and learned to read, write and speak English, although they currently aren’t fluent.
-Likes to surf, sing, dance, play basketball, go shopping, sing karaoke, play with his dogs, exercise, take photos, and drink alcohol (but isn’t a heavy drinker).
-It was his idea to go to Tokyo to become an actor around age 18. Manpei wasn’t sure he wanted to become an actor yet, so Shinpei said that he would go to Tokyo to pursue acting whether Manpei came with him or not. In the end, Manpei ended up moving to Tokyo with his twin to become an actor as well :-)
-Got into a huge fight with Manpei (sometime between 2005-2007, not sure exactly) which resulted in Manpei moving out into his own apartment, so they lived separately for about a year or so. Sometime in 2008 though, they reconciled and Manpei moved back in with Shinpei, and they’ve been sharing an apartment together in Tokyo ever since <3
-he claims that he can rap lol (I actually have a clip of him doing some beatboxing back in 2007 with his BFF, Jutta Yuki)
-Is openly more affectionate with Manpei than vice versa; it has been pointed out in the past by various fangirls that Shinpei doesn’t seem to mind touching Manpei (hugging him, putting an arm around him, a hand on the arm, pretending to kiss him, etc) when others are around.
-Is the more ‘childish and immature’ between he and Manpei. They argue from time to time like regular brothers but Manpei once admitted that he likes how Shinpei is always so bubbly and energetic and envies him for it.
-Shinpei has admitted more than once that he considers Manpei to be his #1 rival and also his #1 best friend *AAAWWWWWWW!!!!*
-Loves shoes and owns about 10 pairs and counting (that’s more than me O.o)
-Gets nervous when driving his fathers car in Nagoya
-(Not sure I have this story straight, I’ll probably have to tweak some parts in the future but…) Once girl came up to him and, mistaking him for Manpei, confessed that she liked him and asked him to go out with her, he told her “Okay” even though he was hurt and it was very awkward for him… .
-Said last year during an interview that he’d really like to go to Singapore on a vacation *winkwink*
-Tends to get jealous when people pay more attention to Manpei than to him; not only that but apparently he doesn’t like it when he’s with Manpei and his brother starts to pay more attention to others instead of him LOL One fangirl pointed out that Shinpei always seems to “crave attention from his twin brother” comparing him to “a lonely housewife yearning for her husbands affection” (I can actually confirm this one).
-Embarrassing moment: went almost a whole day before realizing that the front of his jeans had been unzipped the whole time X-DD
-Another “Awwww” worth moment: during an interview for the Ouran drama, Manpei said that he likes how even though Shinpei will complain about it a lot, he thinks it’s cute that Shinpei will still attempt to properly do chores around the house. Shinpei immediately got embarrassed (blushing and all) but then said “Well, yes, I’ll do anything for Manpei.”