|“||My joy at being involved with a series I love is stronger than any feelings of pressure.||”|
–Sayaka Kanda, during the interview on December 22, 2016
Sayaka Kanda (神田 沙也加 Kanda Sayaka) is a Japanese actress and singer.
Kanda was interviewed by the developer on Famitsu Scan on December 22nd, 2016. Here's the result taken from the interview:
The First Announcement
During the Danganronpa The Stage 2016 production announcement, that was the first time when Kanda told by the developers to voiced Kaede without any of the details or telling about the content, so she didn't know that Kaede is the protagonist of Danganronpa V3. She later talked with her managers that Kaede's lines are very protag-like and was very surprised when Spike Chunsoft's staf responded that she is the main protagonist of the latest installment. She is very happy to voicing a brand new character.
Her joy at being involved with a series that she loves is stronger than any feelings of pressure. Unlike Junko that she played on Danganronpa the Stage, she is not reproducing an existing character, but playing a brand new one. That fact alone puts less pressure on her.
About Kaede and Junko
When Kanda first saw her official character design, she is very glad that she is a cute girl and being the Ultimate Pianist, a music-related talent.
At first, Kazutaka Kodaka told her that Kaede was similar to Aoi Asahina from Danganronpa. He said Kaede is cute, cheerful, positive, and if she's clearly happy and energetic that would be fine, that Kanda understood. Though she has an Ultimate talent, she thinks that Kaede is not very idiosyncratic. She gives off the impression of being a simple girl you could meet anywhere and a person that's easy to befriend.
Kanda thinks that Kaede is positive, and thinks about others before herself, but when she goes too far, she gets a little scary. Despite that she know what will happen in the story, there were times when what Kaede said or did surprised me.
Because she played Enoshima Junko on the stage, Kanda thinks to many fans of the series that Kanda is the real-life Junko. Though since she's playing a completely different character, she figured that hearing the same voice you heard in the stage play would be boring, so she decided to have a distinct difference between Kaede and Junko and she kept that in mind while playing her.
Kaede was praised by Kodaka. After she finished recording, he told her that he's a little worried that Kaede would become a little Junko-esque because she played as her before. However, he can be relaxed after he could differentiate both Kaede and Junko well.
Kanda Plays Danganronpa V3
Recently, Kanda has beaten the first chapter of Danganronpa V3. She feels like playing the Danganronpa that she has experienced up until now, because there's a new setting and new music added, it feels very fresh. Also, she feel like the cast is similar to the first game's in that they're very accessible. Some of Danganronpa V3 casts' personalities reminded her of Danganronpa casts that makes her somehow feels nostalgic.
The Mastermind Flag
Even though she plays her, Kanda got the impression that Kaede continued on from her. When it was announced that she was playing Kaede, people said that it was a “mastermind flag”. She is looking forward to the reactions of people who play the game. Many fans are jumping at shadows as a result, even saying to Kanda "I don't know if I can trust her." She considers that the fans are having fun guessing just based on character visuals and talent illustrations.
Because the recording was done character by character, the voice casts weren’t allowed to read the script outside of their own parts. They understood that as a fan Kanda wanted to truly enjoy the game, so she is grateful to Kodaka and the others for their tolerance, and she plans to play from the start on release day on PlayStation 4.
New Game Mechanics
Kanda was surprised by the way the player can change Truth Bullets to Lie Bullets and do a Lie Refutation and proceed during the segment where the player find contradictions. It's a way to turn things in the player's favor even more. However, since the mechanics are the same, it's easy to pick up. Since the mechanics for the Scrum Debates and whatnot are also easy, the player can enjoy a lot of new aspects and it's very welcome.
About Danganronpa 3
Kanda is very happy that she got to see Junko in motion again to her voice actress, Megumi Toyoguchi's voice in Side: Despair. In past episodes she got to see Junko's cruelty, but here she went above and beyond what she had imagined.
Thoughts on Anime and Stage Adaptation
If Danganronpa V3 got an anime adaptation, Kanda would love to continue to play Kaede. Since anime has the characters moving in between screens, she’d definitely want to see it as a fan. However, she is unsure about a stage play version.
She heard this through the grapevine, so she doesn't know whether it's true or not, but she heard that once you get cast in a role, you cannot change it. Since Kanda plays Junko, she might not be able to play Kaede. She’d like to play Kaede, but if she can't change roles. She states that she is married to Junko for life.
Junko's Support to Kanda
Every time Kanda plays Junko on stage, she gets extremely nervous, so she asked Toyoguchi for a message from Junko, addressed solely to her, so she could listen to it before she went on stage. Once she did, Toyoguchi ignored how selfish she was and send me the message. She she says in Junko's voice, “I've been waiting! I've been waiting all this time, for a person who could perfectly replicate my speech to appear! Sayaka Kanda, do your best today.” She said that the message giving her goosebumps.
When she listens to that message, Kanda find the courage to go on stage, but sometimes she gets a little too overexcited. “She said my name!!”
Kanda's Favorite Character
When asked which character aside from the one she plays, Kaede, interested her the most, Kanda answered, “I love Harukawa Maki-chan. I like how she looks. She’s so cute~!” Furthermore, she said, “The bonus art you get for pre-ordering with GEO showing Maki-chan and Kaede-chan together is great!”
Along with getting the anime, the fans will continue to be happy, but this is the final strike for the “Danganronpa Year”. In addition, the contents of this game will easily surpass the fans' heightened expectations from the anime. You'll quickly close the gap between yourself and the characters, and Kanda thinks you'll quickly find your favorites. What she mean is, for people who have been playing since the first game, you'll get a sense of nostalgia. Because this game will betray your expectations in the best way, she wants you to gather up your hopes and trust and wait for release day. Then she wants to hear and talk about your responses from Chapter 1 on.