×

Nana Komatsu Making Herself Seen in Martin Scorsese’s ‘Silence’

Starlet has ambitions to work outside Japan.

In March, actress and model Nana Komatsu saw the release of her first photo collection. Trabzon was shot with the landscape of the city of the same name, located on the coast of the Black Sea in Turkey, as a backdrop.

Such a release is not an unusual move for a woman in Japan’s entertainment industry. But Komatsu seeks more than domestic appeal — she has ambitions of working outside Japan.

Her role in Martin Scorsese’s Japan-set “Silence,” a film based on Shusaku Endo’s novel “Chinmoku” that is set for release in November, proved to be influential. “No one knew Japanese there, and I was rather excited,” the 20-year-old Tokyo native told the Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper earlier this year about the shoot. “I managed (to make myself understood) with body language.”

Since being scouted by a talent agency in the trendy Harajuku area of Tokyo as an elementary school student, Komatsu has appeared in numerous mainstream films in Japan, such as “Bakuman,” a live-action adaptation of a popular manga that finds her as the heroine. Her breakthrough came in 2014 with her role in Tetsuya Nakashima’s “The World of Kanako,” for which she took the Japan Academy Prize’s Newcomer of the Year award.

Japanese audiences are known for their love of cutie-pie idols. For Komatsu, who will appear in domestic films “Distraction Babies” and “Hero Mania: Seikatsu,” her body of work this far has exhibited a sexy side that could help in fulfilling her international ambitions. “This experience is something to be treasured,” she said of working on “Silence.” “I’ll learn English as I want to appear in other films overseas.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Gael Garcia Bernal on the Power,

    Gael Garcia Bernal on the Power, Responsibility of Cinema to ‘Provoke’

    Gael García Bernal said acting for the likes of Oscar winners Alejandro González Iñárritu and Alfonso Cuarón helped groom him for the director’s chair and praised cinema as “the only medium” that allows artists to “explore the gray areas” in unparalleled ways. “The world is so full of certainties now, and cinema is the one that [...]

  • Gareth Jones

    Samuel Goldwyn Films Takes North American Rights to Berlin Competition Title 'Mr Jones'

    Samuel Goldwyn Films has taken North American rights on Agnieska Holland’s “Mr. Jones,” it announced Thursday. The period thriller debuted in competition at the Berlin Film Festival in February. Set on the eve of the Second World War, “Mr. Jones” stars James Norton as the eponymous character, an ambitious young journalist who travels to Moscow [...]

  • Live Action Mulan

    China Uses Disney's 'Mulan' to Attack Hong Kong Protests

    Although Twitter and Facebook have taken steps to stop what they say is a Chinese state-backed misinformation campaign about the anti-government protests in Hong Kong, similar content from suspicious accounts continues to proliferate widely, some of it co-opting Disney‘s new “Mulan“ to try to discredit the demonstrators. At the same time, China‘s government-controlled media are [...]

  • PACIFIED

    San Sebastian Adds Alice Winocour, Malgorzata Szumowska, Sarah Gavron to Main Comp

    The Darren Aronofsky-produced Brazilian title “Pacified,” by American director Paxton Winters, Alice Winocour’s French-German astronaut drama “Proxima” and Polish film director Małgorzata Szumowska’s religious thriller “The Other Lamb” are among the six final competition selections for September’s 67th San Sebastian Film Festival. Also vying for San Sebastian’s Golden Shell will be U.K. drama “Rocks,” from [...]

  • Jamile Wenske

    Jamila Wenske Leaves One Two Films to Head Achtung Panda! in Berlin

    German producer Jamila Wenske has left One Two Films to head Achtung Panda!, a Berlin-based film production company. Wenske succeeds former managing director Helge Albers, who left Achtung Panda! to become the new CEO of regional funder Filmförderung Hamburg Schleswig-Holstein. Wenske partnered with Sol Bondy and Christoph Lange to launch One Two Films in 2010. [...]

  • Tuva-Novotny

    Tuva Novotny Questions Monogamy in 'Diorama' Pic (EXCLUSIVE)

    HAUGESUND, Norway  — Actress-turned-helmer Tuva Novotny thrives on big challenges. Her feature debut “Blindspot,” Norway’s entry for the 2019 Nordic Council Prize, was shot in real-time in one take and illuminates mental health issues. Her sophomore mainstream Swedish pic “Britt Marie Was Here” –slated for a Sept. 20 U.S. release via Cohen Media Group –  [...]

  • Seizure

    Writer Megan Gallagher On Her Viaplay Supernatural Nordic-Noir 'Seizure'

    With outposts in Copenhagen, Stockholm and Oslo, Miso Film has become one of the most influential film and TV outfits in Scandinavia. On August 19, the company’s Norwegian arm lifted the curtain on its series venture, the supernatural police drama “Seizure” by premiering the show’s first two episodes at the Haugesund Film Festival ahead of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content