Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Kurosawa Trivia Wednesday

Akira Kurosawa's name is often associated with William Shakespeare, he's even one of 12 members currently in the Shakespeare Hall of Fame, maintained by the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust. Still, throughout his career of nearly 30 films only 2 of Kurosawa's movies were direct adaptations of Shakespeare plays, both without the Shakespearean language, and many liberties taken with the narrative.

1st: Throne of Blood. A retelling of Macbeth.

2nd: Ran. A retelling of King Lear.

There is debate among Kurosawa fans as to whether or not The Bad Sleep Well, whose most abstract features parallel Hamlet, was intended to be a homage or retelling of the story. But nobody really knows how much there is to that.


Despite Rashomon being one of the many catalysts in the formal creation of a Best Foreign Film category, and paving the way for Japanese cinema. Only one of Kurosawa's other films ever won the award.

The movie was Dersu Uzala.... and it was won for the Soviet Union in 1975. It was also his only film not made in Japanese.

Kurosawa's only nomination for Best Director came in 1986 for Ran, losing to Sydney Pollack for Out of Africa.

In 1990 he did receive an Honorary Lifetime Achievement Oscar.

Being such a perfectionist Kurosawa personally edited all of his films. Often cutting early prints at night the same day they were shot.


By the time shooting on Ran began Kurosawa's eyesight had almost entirely deteriorated, but he had spent the prior 10 years painting and storyboarding the film shot by shot.

As well during the filming of Ran Kurosawa's wife of 39 years passed away..... he halted filming for only one day to mourn.


Ok, that's enough Kurosawa trivia for one day. Be sure to return here at 1:00Pm for my review of Kurosawa's Ran! (you may have noticed lots of the things here were directed that way :P).

0 better thoughts:

Related Posts with Thumbnails