by Chris MaGee
Hideo Nakata got got up in a big way with Hollywood's love affair (or strip mining depending on how you view it) with Japanese horror films that took place earlier this decade. After his seminal 1998 film "Ringu" was remade by Gore Verbinski and made DreamWorks a ton of cash they invited Nakata himself to come to Hollywood and direct the sequel, "The Ring 2" (above), itself a remake of Nakata's original sequel. That one didn't make a ton of cash and it obviously left Nakata with some mixed feelings because he's that experience as the basis for his upcoming documentary "A Foreign Filmmaker's Guide to Hollywood".
Set to premiere in March at the Image Forum in Shibuya, Tokyo the doc explores the often cutthroat world of a major American film production and Nakata's "...life and struggles in Hollywood." It won't just be Nakata's viewpoint though. He speaks to other foreign directors who came to Hollywood like Takashi Shimizu who remade his film "Ju-On: The Grudge", South African director Jonathan Liebesman (The Killing Room) and producer Takashige Ichise, the Japanese producer brought in on both Nakata's "The Ring 2" and Shimizu's "The Grudge" Hollywood remakes.
Sounds like fascinating stuff, but as of yet there's no word as to a North American screening or release of "A Foreign Filmmaker's Guide to Hollywood". I guess we'll just have to keep our fingers crossed. Thanks to Nippon Cinema for the heads up on this.