Ken Watanabe On His Next Film

Exclusive: It's a Japanese story

Ken Watanabe On His Next Film

by empire |
Published on

We spoke to Ken Watanabe this week when he was in town to promote Memoirs of a Geisha, and he told us a little about his next film, a Japanese project that he hopes will come out here next year.

"After Memoirs of a Geisha, I shot a movie in Japan last summer," he said. "It's a very personal movie, and the title is Memories of Tomorrow. It's a young Alzheimers patient's story. I had an experience, with a different type of illness, leukaemia, 17 years ago. I realised that life and death are all around us; it's a big fact, a big deal."

Not only is Watanabe starring in the film, but he is also its executive producer. "I wanted to distribute to the foreign countries. I wanted to export my true feelings, real culture. It's very contemporary, personal and close to me. I realised that they're both important – this love story and entertainment, imported from Hollywood to Japan [ie Memoirs of a Geisha] – and I wanted to export real culture, true relationships to foreign culture. Import and export and present. That's the reason and purpose, as an actor, to stand between Hollywood and Japan. I can work anywhere to translate these ideas. I can find my real future and opportunity."

So will we see that here? "I hope. If I can, if possible. In Japan, it's out in mid-May." You heard it here first.

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