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Docs offer rival visions of Nanking

Mizushima, Leonsis take on massacre

Helmer Satoru Mizushima will make a documentary correcting what he describes as the “myth” of the Nanking Massacre.

Mizushima is irked by the spate of docs about the 1937 event in which Japanese soldiers killed 200,000 Chinese in the city, also known as Nanjing, over eight weeks.

These documentaries include “Nanking,” produced by AOL vice chairman Ted Leonsis. Fortissimo acquired rights to that doc at Sundance on Wednesday.

Mizushima announced his plans Wednesday at a Tokyo hotel, surrounded by right-wing politicos and others backing the production. His supporters include Tokyo governor Shintaro Ishihara.

The massacre has long been a matter of dispute between China and Japan. Japanese revisionists set the numbers of dead far lower than Chinese figures, while exonerating Japanese troops of atrocities now accepted as fact by the vast majority of Chinese.

References to the massacre have been cut from Japanese school tests despite vigorous Chinese protests.

Mizushima claims Leonsis’ doc is “based on fabrications and gives a false impression” of the Japanese military’s actions.

He plans to release his pic, with a distrib yet to be announced, to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the event.

China plans its own anniversary release with a film jointly produced by Gerald Green’s Viridian Entertainment and the Jiangsu provincial government.

Hong Kong action director Stanley Tong and London’s Transworld Pictures also have announced projects on the subject.

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