Jujutsu Kaisen’s new season 2 director takes a different approach to anime cinematography and it’s a much-needed breath of fresh air.

The second season of Studio MAPPA’s popular anime series sees Shota Goshozono making his full directorial debut and season 2 is off to a fantastic start.

Gojo extends his hand on a rooftop
Jujutsu Kaisen/MAPPA/TOHO Animation YouTube channel

Jujutsu Kaisen has an enticing new look in season 2

Within just the first five minutes of season 2 episode 1, Jujutsu Kaisen fans were acutely aware that the anime would be taking a fresh approach to its visuals and cinematography.

Whether it be off-centered shots of a Basketball, the Chibi-changes in style for comedic moments, or a perspective-shifting camera motion track, almost every single frame had something going for it in the premiere episode.

There is even a reference to the popular 2006 anime movie ‘Paprika’ when Utahime runs down the infinite corridor; a mirror image of a scene from the original film and an early example of how the new-look cinematography is inspired by classic camerawork. Chainsaw Man, another project from Studio MAPPA, famously crafted its opening sequence from various classic movie moments last year in a similar style.

If you were curious as to why Jujutsu Kaisen is taking a more cinematic approach to its storytelling, that’s because the popular anime series actually has a new leader at the helm: Shota Goshozono replaces Sunghoo Park as the director for Jujutsu Kaisen season 2.

This will be the first time that Goshozono has been the director of an entire anime broadcast and whilst that may unnerve some fans, the global Jujutsu Kaisen community can feel rest assured with the knowledge that the anime is in safe hands with Goshozono.

Prior to this new role, Goshozono was the director for Jujutsu Kaisen season 1 episode 8 ‘Boredom’ and 17 ‘Kyoto Sister Exchange Event 3’, episode 8 ‘Gunfire’ of Chainsaw Man, as well as Ranking of Kings episodes 7 ‘The Prince’s Apprenticeship’ and 21 ‘The Swordsmanship of a King’.

In fact, Chainsaw Man episode 8 was the highest-rated episode of season 1 on IMDB, with episode 21 of Ranking of Kings being the joint-highest-rated episode from its opening season!

Goshozono has also worked as a key animator, storyboarder, and animation director for shows including Black Clover, Eromanga Sensei, Fate/Grand Order, Kaguya-sama: Love is War, Mob Psycho 100, The Seven Deadly Sins, and Sword Art Online: Alicization.

Whilst it will be a tough task for the young director to take Jujutsu Kaisen to the next level in season 2, the author of the original manga series Gege Akutami has put his faith in Goshozono for good reason.

The iconic mangaka has even claimed that Goshozono is the perfect director for the Jujutsu Kaisen sequel because he is “of the same generation and has a similar sensibility” as the author.

“I feel he [Shota Goshozono] has the same goal in mind as I do. I can feel his determination to make it even better based on the first season and the film version, and I am already very satisfied with it even though it hasn’t aired yet. I hope that many people will watch the second season of the anime. Especially if you don’t know much about the manga.”

Thankfully, the response online to both Goshozono making his full directorial debut and the return episode of Jujutsu Kaisen has been nothing short of spectacular.

Some of the best reactions from fans online include:

“A new take on Jujutsu Kaisen helmed by first time series director Shota Goshozono. With lengthy original content and loose presentation of the 2 chapters adapted, a captivating approach to the material is executed.”

“I could write a huge essay to describe how incredible Jujutsu Kaisen s2 premiere was. But as I’m very lazy as always, I will say it in short, this premier establishes JJK as an anime with balance between realism and exaggeration perfectly. Shota Goshozono is mind blowing!”

“Everything else being equal, Shota Goshozono again makes a point of proving that the episode director is everything.”

Jujutsu Kaisen season 2 will include 23 episodes and will be broadcast over two consecutive cours, with new episodes releasing every Thursday on Crunchyroll.

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