It's not uncommon for a western to get remade into a samurai movie or a samurai movie to get remade into a western. For example the movie Seven Samurai was remade into the classic western The Magnificent Seven, and both films ended up being incredible classics. Even Clint Eastwood's 1964 film A Fistful of Dollars was based on Akira Kurosawa's 1961 samurai classic Yojimbo.
Warner Bros. Japan is planning to turn Eastwood's Academy Award winning western Unforgiven into a period samurai film. The best part about this news is that Ken Watanabe (The Last Samurai, Inception, Batman Begins) will be taking on the lead role in the film, which was played by Eastwood who's character was a retired gunman that takes one final job. Watanabe also starred in Eastwood's WWII film Letters From Iwo Jima.
Variety reports that the story of the film will follow the original film and, "will be set in 1880, with the location changed to the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido, a time when Japanese settlers were displacing the native Ainu people. Watanabe plays a samurai with a fearsome reputation as a swordsman who is living in retirement with his Ainu wife when poverty and a large bounty tempt him into action again."
The movie is set to be directed by Lee Sang-il, who recently directed the film Villain, and it will be released in the fall of 2013. The movie will be released in Japan under the title... Yurusarezaru Mono, which as you might have guessed means Unforgiven.
I'm actually really excited about this movie, and I'm looking forward to seeing how it turns out. I have no doubt Watanabe is going to give yet another badass performance. What are your thoughts on Unforgiven getting a samurai makeover?
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