The latest movie from Kitano Takeshi (63, photo left) has been selected to compete at this year’s 63rd Cannes International Film Festival. Kitano is one of Japan’s most successful filmmakers on the international circuit and enjoys huge popularity in Europe. He was recently presented with France’s top honor for the arts and currently has an art exhibition at the Fondation Cartier in Paris. But this is only the second time he’s had a competitive entry at Cannes. The first was “Kikujiro no Natsu” back in 1999.
The Cannes appearance will certainly add to the hype for “Outrage,” which marks Kitano’s return to the action and violence genre that established him as a top moviemaker. 2003’s “Zatoichi” was his last R-15 rating, and that mixed music and dance numbers with a classic samurai tale. “Outrage” is a full-on yakuza flick, with lots of betrayal, mind games, and bloody violence. Kitano said, “It’s my first violent movie in a while, so I think there’s a lot of expectation. I’m looking forward to the audience reaction.” As well as Kitano himself, the strong cast includes Shiina Kippei (photo right), Kase Ryo, and Miura Tomokazu.
The movie is scheduled to open in Japanese theaters on June 12 but the Cannes audience will get to see it a month sooner as the festival runs May 12-23. It will be up against such entries as “Another Year” (Mike Leigh), Poetry (Lee Chang-dong), and “Burnt by the Sun 2” (Nikita Mikhalkov). President of the jury this year is director Tim Burton.
Kitano Takeshi Receives Top French Honor (Mar. 11, 2010)