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More Japanese Stars For Eastwood
Red Sun, Black Sand gets a cast

10 March 2006  |  Written by   

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Clint Eastwood’s World War II double-bill, Flags of our Fathers and Red Sun, Black Sand is now well underway. Looking at the Pacific war and specifically the Battle of Iwo Jima from the American and Japanese perspectives respectively, shooting on the second film, Red Sun, is due to start later this month. And with that plan comes some new casting details for the film.
Ken Watanabe has been lined up for the leading role of Japanese general Tadamichi Kuribayashi, who led the Japanese forces during the gruelling battle for Iwo Jima for 40 days and nights.
Kazunari Ninomiya (a member of Japanese pop group Arashi), Tsuyoshi Ihara, Ryo Kase and Shido Nakamura have all signed on for the film – we’re guessing as soldiers under Kuribayashi’s command. While not household names outside Japan (or even big stars within Japan), their casting shows Eastwood’s commitment to making this a Japanese production, even if large parts of it are due to shoot in LA. Eastwood has, however, been given special permission to shoot the exteriors in Iwo Jima itself.

In addition to its American director, the film is being produced by Americans: Eastwood and Steven Spielberg among them, with Paul Haggis executive-producing and assisting Japanese-American screenwriter Iris Yamashita in writing the story. Eastwood is currently in post-production on Flags of our Fathers, with both films due for a staggered release later this year.

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Your Comments

Good cast!
Clint's casting director seems to have done a pretty good job here. All of the actors in the article are well-known and all have distinctive personalities. I can see Kazunari Ninomiya as a wimp-type character and Tsuyoshi Ihara as Watanabe's number two. The other two aren't that hot, but at least they don't seem to be going for Cary Hiroyuki Tagawa for once. That guy must have been in just about every Hollywood-made, Japanese-themed movie ever made. Him and Mako. More

Posted by Danikun at 18:14 on 11 March 2006 | Report This Post

With Clint you know you are in for a treat. This is a man who knows how to direct (and all within 3 takes) his actors to their best. More

Posted by bagrot1 at 18:13 on 10 March 2006 | Report This Post

how lucky are we, to be getting double bills form clint eastwood and uwe boll in the same year!!? More

Posted by billythehick at 16:28 on 10 March 2006 | Report This Post

Clint Eastwood is certainly giving us loads of interesting projects, and not type-casting himself as he did a bit with acting. With another director I might think of the propaganda side of things, but with Clint I reckon this will be a balanced portrayal, helped in no small way by Red Sun. He truly is one of the best directors out there at the moment, so we can expect great things... More

Posted by jon2005 at 11:51 on 10 March 2006 | Report This Post

at least Clint has decided to show the other side. that Flags of our Fathers thing sounds like it could be cliched American propaganda but if he's showing the japenese side then at least he may give both sides a representation. lets hope they're even though. but with Clint's directorial record (well most of it) i have faith that we might get seeing another Oscar contender. not that i'd care after this years results-Crash;"don't be racist!" Everybody with sense" yeah, we know" More

Posted by Rock Lobster! at 11:41 on 10 March 2006 | Report This Post

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