×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Kitano resurrects cult fave ‘Zatoichi’

Pic tells tale of master swordsman in disguise

Cannes fest favorite Takeshi Kitano is behind the camera again, directing and starring in “Zatoichi,” which resurrects the long-running Japanese anti-hero, absent from the screen since the late 1980s.

A blind traveling masseur whose humble facade hides his secret identity as a lightning-fast master swordsman, Zatoichi gained a huge cult following in Japan over 20 years in a television series and numerous features.

In the script by Kitano, the character lands in a town run by sinister gangs and a ruthless samurai, where he crosses paths with two beautiful geishas avenging their parents’ murder.

The cast also features Tadanobu Asano, who stars in Cannes competition entry “Bright Future,” by Kiyoshi Kurosawa. Shooting wraps in Japan in early June with domestic release tentatively scheduled for fall.

“Zatoichi” is a Bandai Visual, Tokyo FM, Dentsu, TV Asashi, Saito Entertainment co-production. International sales will be handled by Paris-based Celluloid Dreams, which has Kitano’s entire back catalogue.

Kitano’s films “Kikujiro,” “Kids Return” and “Sonatine” all were official Cannes selections. He won the Golden Lion at the 1997 Venice fest for “Hana-bi.”

More Film

  • 'Five Night at Freddy's' Movie Script

    'Five Night at Freddy's' Movie Script Scrapped, New Script in Works

    Cannes fest favorite Takeshi Kitano is behind the camera again, directing and starring in “Zatoichi,” which resurrects the long-running Japanese anti-hero, absent from the screen since the late 1980s. A blind traveling masseur whose humble facade hides his secret identity as a lightning-fast master swordsman, Zatoichi gained a huge cult following in Japan over 20 […]

  • Mark Dindal Garfield

    'Garfield' Movie Finds Director in 'Chicken Little's' Mark Dindal

    Cannes fest favorite Takeshi Kitano is behind the camera again, directing and starring in “Zatoichi,” which resurrects the long-running Japanese anti-hero, absent from the screen since the late 1980s. A blind traveling masseur whose humble facade hides his secret identity as a lightning-fast master swordsman, Zatoichi gained a huge cult following in Japan over 20 […]

  • Left to right: Juror Dan Mirvish,

    Dance and Reggae Wrap 13th Belize Int’l Film Fest

    Cannes fest favorite Takeshi Kitano is behind the camera again, directing and starring in “Zatoichi,” which resurrects the long-running Japanese anti-hero, absent from the screen since the late 1980s. A blind traveling masseur whose humble facade hides his secret identity as a lightning-fast master swordsman, Zatoichi gained a huge cult following in Japan over 20 […]

  • Letitia Wright, John David Washington, Marina

    Variety's 10 Actors to Watch Honored at Newport Beach Film Festival

    Cannes fest favorite Takeshi Kitano is behind the camera again, directing and starring in “Zatoichi,” which resurrects the long-running Japanese anti-hero, absent from the screen since the late 1980s. A blind traveling masseur whose humble facade hides his secret identity as a lightning-fast master swordsman, Zatoichi gained a huge cult following in Japan over 20 […]

  • Stan Lee Dies: Hollywood Pays Tribute

    Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Ryan Reynolds and More Pay Tribute to Comic Book Legend Stan Lee

    Cannes fest favorite Takeshi Kitano is behind the camera again, directing and starring in “Zatoichi,” which resurrects the long-running Japanese anti-hero, absent from the screen since the late 1980s. A blind traveling masseur whose humble facade hides his secret identity as a lightning-fast master swordsman, Zatoichi gained a huge cult following in Japan over 20 […]

  • Child's Play

    Aubrey Plaza's 'Child's Play' Reboot to Hit Theaters in June 2019

    Cannes fest favorite Takeshi Kitano is behind the camera again, directing and starring in “Zatoichi,” which resurrects the long-running Japanese anti-hero, absent from the screen since the late 1980s. A blind traveling masseur whose humble facade hides his secret identity as a lightning-fast master swordsman, Zatoichi gained a huge cult following in Japan over 20 […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content