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Yamato, Macross Director to Create Biopic on Engineer

posted on 2007-05-09 12:22 EDT
Noboru Ishiguro writes 2008 movie on architect of Taiwan's modernization

Sankei Shimbun reports that famed director Noboru Ishiguro (Yamato, Macross) is writing and directing a new Mushi Production movie on the life of Yoichi Hatta, the Japanese engineer that helped modernize Taiwan when it was a colony of Japan. Mushi head Satoshi Itō announced the project while attending the memorial service for the 65th anniversary of Hatta's death at the Wushanto Dam in central Taiwan on May 8.

According to Itō, the Pāten Rai (Hatta ga Yatte Kita)! movie will cost 150 million yen (about US$1.3 million) and will open in summer of 2008 in Japan as well as in Taiwan in Mandarin Chinese. Mushi Production is the studio that Osamu Tezuka founded to create Mighty Atom (Astro Boy), the second animated television series in Japanese history. The story will be told through the eyes of a boy from a poor Taiwanese farming family who becomes Hatta's assistant.

Kanazawa-born Hatta came to Taiwan in 1910 and helped design and build the Chianan Irrigation Waterworks (centering around the 1300-meter-wide Wushanto Dam) in 1920. After ten years of construction, the resulting resevoir became the largest in Asia and the third largest in the world. The waterworks expanded the farmable fields in that area by 3,000%.

Every year, the local Taiwanese citizens still hold a memorial service at the bronze statue of Hatta constructed at the dam. This year's service hosted about 40 people from Japan, including Hatta's grandchild.


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