This year’s E3 had a huge surprise for us all: The Final Fantasy VII remake. But this wasn’t the only surprise. Prior to the official unveiling, Final Fantasy VII‘s original character designer Tetsuya Nomura had no idea he’d be directing the remake.
Square Enix — or rather, Square Enix’s former boss, Yoichi Wada — has previously stated that to remake Final Fantasy VII would mean that the franchise would be “finished”. That doesn’t mean there weren’t movements within the company to make a remake happen.
In an interview with Weekly Famitsu, remake director Tetsuya Nomura stated, “Actually, quite a while ago, I tried to start up the project [to remake FFVII], but at the time it didn’t come to fruition.”
According to Nomura, it was Square Enix Exec Shinji Hashimoto who approached Nomura and the original FFVII director Yoshinori Kitase about the new project. “Mr. Hashimoto was involved with the advertising and marketing of the original, so like [Mr. Kitase and myself], VII has a strong place in his heart.” Nomura explained.
Nomura is currently helming Kingdom Hearts III, so it’s surprising that he would take the reins of another high-profile project when the one he’s still developing as of yet has no release date. It turns out Nomura himself was surprised by the fact that he was directing the FFVII remake.
“As preproduction went along and I offered my opinions on what I thought should be done, Mr. Kitase would asked me how the individual elements should be adjusted in fine detail.” Nomura recalled. “It was very perplexing. Then one day, as I was checking the internal company presentation video it said ‘Director Tetsuya Nomura’ at the end.”
Apparently this was news to Nomura who had assumed that Kitase would be reclaiming the director’s chair for the remake of his game. “So I called up Mr. Kitase and said, ‘It says that I’m the director for some reason.’ To which he replied, ‘If course it does.'” Nomura said with a nervous laugh.
The “‘I thought you were going to direct!’ ‘Well I thought YOU were going to direct!'” episode was something that happened in the initial stages of the project’s inception and Nomura has stated that he is presently well aware of and well into his position as director.
While Nomura has promised the remake won’t just be the original with a facelift, aside from the admittedly awesome teaser, we have yet to see what he has in store for us. Nomura has promised more info on the game soon, so hopefully we won’t have to wait too long.