Live Action Information
History & Origin
On July 31st, 2003, a press conference was held to announce Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, a live action tv version of Naoko Takeuchi's manga. The series was produced by Toei and was slated for 49 episodes. The series aired on CBC/TBS a national broadcasting network, in collaboration with numerous local stations throughout Japan from October 2003 to September 2004. The series aired in the 7:30 Saturday morning timeslot, and ran for 30 minutes. PGSM is a retelling of the fight against the Dark Kingdom.
PGSM is a tokusatsu show that uses several sentai elements, from which Sailor Moon was originally inspired. Tokusatsu literally means "special shooting" and shows of this genre rely heavily upon special effects to tell the story. Sentai refers to a specific series of tv shows, dating back to the 1970s in Japan. These shows have fighting teams, usually of five people, that wear individual colors to identify each member.
The cast auditions were held in June of 2003. Naoko Takeuchi presided over these auditions and assisted in selecting the final five girls to play the sailor guardians. Miyuu Sawai was selected to star as Usagi Tsukino, Rika Izumi (Chisaki Hama/Rika) as Sailor Mercury, Keiko Kitagawa as Sailor Mars, Mew Azama as Sailor Jupiter, and Ayaka Komatsu as Sailor Venus. PGSM served as the acting debut for each girl, with the exception of Miyuu Sawai. p>
A making-of special, titled Make up! Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon ~Until the Young Girls Become the Sailor Warriors~ aired on September 27, 2003. It featured cast auditions, behind-the-scenes looks at sets, a brief history of the Sailor Moon franchise, and more. This special's title was probably a reference to Make Up! Sailor Soldiers, an anime special that was shown with the Sailor Moon R movie.
During PGSM's run, several other promotional and special events were held. A radio program titled DJ Moon aired several times on various radio stations, and was later released on three CD albums. A stage musical called Kirari Super Live was also produced, featuring the cast performing in front of a live theater audience. PGSM's actors made several other appearances on Japanese television and other media promoting the series. The series was released on VHS and DVD.
After the series concluded its run on TV, two video specials were released on DVD. These included Act Zero, the story of Sailor V, and the Special Act, which focused on the wedding of Usagi and Mamoru. Act Zero also included two short side stories. Super Dance Lesson was also released on VHS, and was a special order item through specific magazines. Like the name implies, this VHS was an instructional video that had the main actresses teaching the dances seen in Kirari Super Live.
Coinciding with the debut of Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, the Sailor Moon manga was revised and re-released. This new deluxe release of the Sailor Moon manga not only celebrated the franchise's incredible history, but also served as a promotional tool for Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon, as this new version also used the newly adopted PGSM title.