Noboru Sugimura (杉村 升 Sugimura Noboru , June 28, 1948 - February 24, 2005) was a Japanese screenwriter who worked on various television series and video games. Sugimura passed away at the age of 56 from an unspecified heart condition.
Early writing (1974-1983)
Sugimura's writing debut was a single episode of the detective drama Taiyō ni Hoero! ("Bark at the Sun!"), which he co-wrote alongside his teacher, Ei Ogawa, who screenwrote the 1970 kaiju film, Space Amoeba. Their partnership continued into other series, with the two next working together on the police procedural drama, Daihijōsen (大非常線, lit. "The Emergncy Line"), and are credited with the seventh episode, "Chōsen" (挑戦, lit. "The Challenge"). Following this was the first and thirteenth episodes of Kakushi metsuke sanjō (隠し目付参上, lit. "Undercover Metsuke visiting"). Sugimura's first solo writing credit was in Lupin the 3rd, an anime series which he wrote seven episodes for exclusively between 1978 and 1980, along with co-writing an eigth.
In 1980, Sugimura joined the writing team for Bakusō! Doberman Deka (爆走!ドーベルマン刑事), the TV adaptation of a manga series. Also in this year he wrote for the series The Hangman: Burning Case Files (ザ・ハングマン 燃える事件簿), in which a secret vigilante organization which tracks down and kills criminals who escaped the justice system. He is credite with episode 46, titled Nekketsu suppon keiji (熱血スッポン刑事). He also co-wrote the sixth episode of the second season, titled Yoga hijutsu shaberu mizu shitai (ヨガ秘術 しゃべる水死体). In 1981, Sugimura wrote for Western Police (西部警察), a crime drama, and is credited with episode 103, titled "Breakthrough" (強攻突破). 1983 saw the final collaboration with Ogawa, working on two episodes of Chōshichirō Edo Nikki (長七郎江戸日記), an historial drama set during the time of the Tokugawa shōgunate.
Tokusatsu career (1984-1996)
During the later half of the 1980s, he was employed by Toei Company and began working primarily as a writer for various live-action tokusatsu programs. Sugimura was the main writer for the Metal Hero franchise from 1989 (Kidō Keiji Jiban) to 1991 (Super Rescue Solbrain) and the Super Sentai franchise from 1992 (Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger) to 1995 (Chōriki Sentai Ohranger).
Flagship career (1996-2004)
Sugimura moved to writing scenarios for video games and become one of the founding members of the Capcom division Flagship, where he wrote the scenarios for several Capcom games, beginning with Resident Evil 2.
Contributions to the franchise
On the recommendation of Capcom production supervisor Yoshiki Okamoto, Sugimura was brought into the Resident Evil 2 development project in early 1997 (then in its "1.5" stage of development) to assess Hideki Kamiya's script. Finding the plot generally unsatisfactory, he offered to write up an entirely new script. The conspiracy subplot where Police Chief Brian Irons is found to be accepting bribes from Umbrella was added to give more flavour to the story, with Irons becoming gradually more sadistic. As Okamoto had hopes for a Resident Evil franchise, Kamiya's definitive ending was replaced. Umbrella, which was already closed down in Kamiya's script, was resurrected in order to justify more sequels. While the company was always intended by producer Shinji Mikami to close down, Sugimura and Flagship were hired to write more and more stories set in the time between Resident Evil 2 and that event.
Sugimura was then brought back shortly after Resident Evil 2's release to write the scenario for Resident Evil 0; CODE:Veronica and Resident Evil 4 (then in its "Stylish" version). These games were effectively a trilogy revolving around the Progenitor Virus (a retcon of Kenichi Iwao's "Clay Virus") and the three Umbrella founders. These three went under significant re-writes: Resident Evil 0 was nearly cancelled but later remade for the GameCube, with Sugimura (having already forgotten Flagship's Story Bible for Raccoon City and the game script itself) writing in a cameo of Raccoon City Underground Laboratory despite geographical impossibilities. CODE:Veronica was altered to replace Jill Valentine with Claire Redfield as protagonist thanks to Kamiya's addition of Leon's end-line to Resident Evil 2 forcing in a sequel. The freedom of Jill allowed her to appear in Aoyama's Resident Evil 3: Nemesis. The first Resident Evil 4 script written by Sugimura introduced a new protagonist who would explode The Earl Spencer's castle; this spun-off into Devil May Cry. A second script became "Castle" Resident Evil 4, written with the assistance of Resident Evil 3: Nemesis author Yasuhisa Kawamura. This featuring an infected Leon S. Kennedy investigating Spencer's estate. Sugimura's script was ultimately rejected when Shinji Mikami took over production.
Sugimura also wrote two shorter games that were to better explain the Resident Evil universe without the use of the "main" cast. Resident Evil Survivor delved into Umbrella's world views on their Mediterranean island colony, Sheena Island. Another game, Resident Evil: Dead Aim, introduced Leon's colleague Bruce McGivern - both working for US-STRATCOM - and introduced bioterrorism resulting from Umbrella's impending collapse.
Sugimura also wrote a number of non-Resident Evil games, the result of Resident Evil 2's success advertising Flagship's skills to other Capcom producers. While not present for the first game in the series, Sugimura was the head writer for Dino Crisis 2; Dino Stalker and Dino Crisis 3. These three formed an interconnected trilogy featuring rogue computers and androids but with no direct story continuity. For example, the "Caren" androids in Dino Crisis 3 are created based on the work done by the son of Dino Crisis 2 protagonist Dylan Morton, who built the androids seen in that game. Dino Stalker reveals that the loss of the Noah's Ark team of Dino Crisis 2 was caused by a rogue computer system - MTHR - which went on to genetically modify dinosaurs for its own purposes. This computer is a counterpart to the MTHR computer of Dino Crisis 3, which creates a number of dinosaur-like creatures upon the deaths of the ship's crew.
|Title||Year of release||Note|
|Taiyō ni Hoero!||1974||Co-wrote thirty-five episodes with his teacher, Ei Ogawa.|
|Daihijōsen (大非常線)||1976||Crime drama. Co-wrote "Chōsen" (挑戦, lit. "The Challenge") with Ei Ogawa.|
|Kakushi metsuke sanjō (隠し目付参上, lit. "Undercover Metsuke visiting")||1976||Co-wrote episodes 1 and 13 with Ei Ogawa.|
|Lupin the 3rd||1978-1980||Anime series. First solo-writing with seven episodes and a co-writing credit for another.|
|The Hangman: Burning Case Files (ザ・ハングマン 燃える事件簿)||1980||Crime drama. Wrote episode 46.|
|Bakusō! Doberman Deka (爆走!ドーベルマン刑事)||1980||TV show adaptation of a manga series.|
|Western Police (西部警察)||1981||Crime drama. Wrote episode 103, titled "Breakthrough" (強攻突破).|
|The Hangman II (ザ・ハングマンII).||1982||Co-wrote episode 6.|
|Chōshichirō Edo Nikki (長七郎江戸日記)||1983||Co-wrote two episodes with Ei Ogawa.|
|Nebula Mask Machine Man (星雲仮面マシンマン)||1984||Tokusatsu series. Wrote eight episodes.|
|Kyoudai Ken Byclosser (兄弟拳バイクロッサー, lit. "Brother Fist Byclosser"||1985||Wrote five episodes.|
|Sukeban Deka (スケバン刑事, lit. "Delinquent Girl Detective")||1985||School drama. Wrote ten episodes and co-wrote the TV special, "Goodbye Yuki Saito" (さよなら斉藤由貴).|
|Sukeban Deka II||1986||Wrote episode 13.|
|Jikuu Senshi Spielban (時空戦士スピルバン)||1986||Wrote episodes 38, 40 and 41.|
|Dai tokai 25-ji (大都会25時)||1987||Wrote three episodes.|
|Kamen Rider Black (仮面ライダーBLACK)||1987-1988||Wrote twelve episodes.|
|Hadaka no taishō hōrō-ki (裸の大将放浪記)||1987-1990||Wrote nine episodes|
|Sekai Ninja Sen Jiraiya (世界忍者戦ジライヤ)||1988||Wrote two episodes|
|The Mobile Cop Jiban (機動刑事ジバン)||1989||Wrote twenty episodes.|
|Special Rescue Police Winspector (特警ウインスペクター)||1990||Wrote thirteen episodes.|
|Super Rescue Solbrain (特救指令ソルブレイン)||1991||Wrote twenty-two episodes.|
|Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger (恐竜戦隊ジュウレンジャー)||1992||Wrote thirty episodes.|
|Gosei Sentai Dairanger (五星戦隊ダイレンジャー)||1993||Wrote twenty-six episodes.|
|Ninja Sentai Kakuranger (忍者戦隊カクレンジャー)||1994||Wrote thirty-two episodes.|
|The Masked Rider: Kamen Rider ZO||1994||Film.|
|Chouriki Sentai Ohranger (超力戦隊オーレンジャー)||1995||Wrote twenty-three episodes.|
|Keiji ou! (刑事追う!)||1996||Episode 19: "Fall" (転落).|
|Resident Evil 2||1998|
|BIO HAZARD DRAMA ALBUM ~the fate of raccoon city~ VOL.1||1998||Writer|
|BIO HAZARD DRAMA ALBUM ~the fate of raccoon city~ Vol.3||1999||Writer|
|Biohazard 2 Drama Album ~The Female Spy Ada Lives~||1998||Writer|
|Resident Evil: Survivor||2000|
|Dino Crisis 2||2000|
|BIOHAZARD 4D-EXECUTER||2000||Executive Supervisor|
|Resident Evil CODE:Veronica||2001|
|Devil May Cry||2001||Given "special thanks"|
|Resident Evil 0||2002|
|Onimusha 2: Samurai's Destiny||2002|
|Clock Tower 3||2002|
|Resident Evil: Dead Aim||2003|
|Dino Crisis 3||2003|
|Onimusha 3: Demon Siege||2004|
|Haunting Ground||2005||Draft scenario writer|
|BIOHAZARD 4 (Cancelled)||2000||Scenario Writer|
|Biohazard 4 (Castle Ver)||2002||Scenario Writer|