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Tony Leung And J-Horror Master Kiyoshi Kurosawa Team For Upcoming Japanese-Chinese Period Drama '1905'

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by Simon Dang
September 10, 2012 11:15 AM
4 Comments
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It wasn't that long ago we were questioning what had become of J-Horror legend and all-round genre blending/bending Kiyoshi Kurosawa after his 2008 family drama "Tokyo Sonata." Things turned around fairly quickly with his latest 4.5 hour drama "Penance" premiering at Venice merely days ago (even though it didn't totally sweep our man on the ground at Venice off his feet), with the helmer also lining up a sci-fi drama "The Day Of The Real, Perfect Plesiosaur" in the near future. Kurosawa, though, is now set to team with one of Asia's finest modern actors in Tony Leung Chiu-wai for period drama "1905," the latter starring in his first-ever Japanese picture.

While the project has apparently been in the works for years, it looks like things have finally come together with the duo joined by Japanese thesps Matsuda Shota and popstar-turned-actress Maeda Atsuko for a Japanese production that'll reportedly be 90% Chinese language. Set in 1905 near the end of the Qing Dynasty and the introduction of Western culture, a loan shark named Yan (Leung) travels to Japan to collect the money from five seperate men. There he meets a member of an ultranationalist group called ‘Houkokukai’ (Matsuda) who has been ordered to conduct the forced repatriation of five Chinese revolutionaries, who happen to be the same five people Leung's loan shark is hunting. Atsuko, meanwhile, plays a woman who prepares meals for Yan during his stay in Japan.

“Their experiences, their despair and their hope, they are all directly connected with the problems we are still facing today and will continue to face in the future.” Kurosawa explained, “The cast is like a dream come true for me. I still can’t believe that this is real. I think that those three wonderful actors will be able connect with each other beyond words, age, and gender. They’ll connect with their souls. Getting to work with such great people is more blessing than one director deserves.” Shooting's set to finish in January, not long after Wong Kar-wai's "The Grand Masters," in which Leung stars, finally (supposedly) gets its release in China, even though it was still shooting in July. Hopefully Kurosawa's a bit faster on the old turnaround...  [TokyoHive via AsianWiki]

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4 Comments

  • lenij | September 11, 2012 11:31 PMReply

    It's always a treat to see Tony Leung in anything. Can't wait to see this one. I'm sure this will wrap up earlier than the Grandmasters. Jesus, Kar Wai really does take his time.

  • Archer Slyce | September 10, 2012 1:58 PMReply

    That said obviously I'm looking forward to see this. Specially curious about how they will deal with the historical context (Russian-japanese war et al.).

  • rotch | September 10, 2012 11:32 AMReply

    Isn't it kind of reductive to call Kurosawa a "j-horror master"?

  • Archer Slyce | September 10, 2012 1:57 PM

    I was asking myself the same question ! You can see it as a proof that whatever j-horror is (god I hate that term !!) it includes amazing movies (which it does, even beside the masterpiece that Kairo is... I loved that era of horror myself). On the other hand Kurosawa went beyond whatever j-horror is (god I hate that term !!!!) with Charisma, Cure et al.... so yeah that would be reductive somehow.

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