by Chris MaGee
When you report on the latest Japanese film news on a regular basis you hear of certain in-development projects again and again. Many of them you have to take with a healthy dose of salt and many never go beyond the rumour stage. This past week two long circulating project rumours suddenly became hard facts. One of them I have to admit I am happy to see and the other... well....
The good news first. Back in late 2008 and early 2009 we reported on how Martin Scorsese was developing a remake of Masahiro Shinoda's 1971 film "Silence". That actually may be over-stepping things a bit. Scorsese actually wanted to make a film of the same novel that Shinoda based his film on, Shusaku Endo's 1966 novel "Chinmoku". The novel is set in 17th-century Nagasaki and tells the story of of two Jesuit priests who travel to Japan to investigate the apparent apostasy (renunciation of faith) of their mentor. What they discover when they arrive is that the Tokugawa Shogunate has just defeated a Christian uprising and that the faith has been driven underground.
I was one of the many people who was concerned when it was announced that Scorsese was going to remake Andrew Lau and Alan Mak's 2002 Hong Kong cop film "Infernal Affairs", but once I saw "The Departed" I was pleasantly surprised how much I liked it, so the thought of a master film-maker like Scorsese re-imagining "Silence" didn't sting too much. Now, according to a post over at Variety.com it appears that Scorsese's "Silence" is a go. The post discusses Scorsese's plans to work with his recent screen muse Leonardo Dicaprio once again in the film "The Wolf of Wall Street". It then outlines the projects that Scorsese has to wrap up before he can move onto that film. Scorsese is now in the midst of post- production on the kids movie "Hugo Cabret" and then he is slotted to shoot "Silence" with Benicio Del Toro in the lead role. Very interesting.... Thanks to Wildgrounds for the heads up on this.
Now from the sublime to the ridiculous. Last April we told you about hoe Paramount wanted to make another remake based on Hideo Nakata's seminal J-horror film "Ring", and what's worse they wanted to make it in 3D. Now it looks as if Sadako will really be crawling off the screen in a 3D remake/ reboot of "Ring", but it won't be Paramount behind the project. According to Nippon Cinema Kadokawa has announced that it will be bringing ghost girl Sadako back to the screen in the tentatively titled "Sadako 3D". The film will be scripted by none other that Koji Suzuki, the man who penned the novel that the original novel "Ring". I suppose that is a bit of good news, but we'll have to wait and see until 2012 when "Sadako 3d" hits Japanese theatres.