Live-Action Rurouni Kenshin Sequels' Photos Preview Aoshi vs. Okina Battle
posted on by Egan Loo
The press visited the sets for this year's two live-action Rurouni Kenshin sequel films in late November, and previewed the scene when Aoshi Shinomori (played by Yusuke Iseya) fights Okina or Nenji Kashiwazaki (min Tanaka).
The production built Aoi-ya, Okina's two-story restaurant and inn from Nobuhiro Watsuki's original manga, in two weeks at Toei's Uzumasa lot in Kyoto. The crew recreated Aoi-ya in exacting detail down to the trees in the garden. In this set, Iseya and Tanaka realize the Aoshi vs. Okina battle, with a little help from wires.
Iseya, who played the rival Rikiishi Tōru in the boxing manga film Ashita no Joe and the title character in the live-action Casshern film, did not train his body much for this new role, which he described as "unrelenting." Tanaka has performed as a dancer, and he compared the two disciplines: "In dancing, unlike in fighting, the only enemy is yourself. To take in and react to an opponent's moves with your own moves, that was very novel for me." Despite their fierce in-character fighting, the two expressed respect and admiration for each other, and Iseya added that it was an honor to perform with Tanaka. Director Keishi Ōtomo said he looked forward to filming this battle between the "history's strongest 68-year-old, Min-san, and Iseya-san who is 40 years old — give or take a few years," early on.
The two new films will cover the Kyoto arc from Nobuhiro Watsuki's original historical action manga. Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Taika-hen (Rurouni Kenshin: The Great Kyoto Fire) will open in Japan on August 1, and Rurouni Kenshin: Densetsu no Saigo-hen (Rurouni Kenshin: The End of a Legend) will open on September 13. Principal photography on the two films ended on December 27 after six months of filming.
The sequels will feature the return of the following cast members:
- Takeru Satoh as Kenshin Himura
- Emi Takei as Kaoru Kamiya
- Munetaka Aoki as Sanosuke Sagara
- Yū Aoi as Megumi Takani
- Yosuke Eguchi as Hajime Saitō
Ryunosuke Kamiki as Sōjirō Seta
Yusuke Iseya as Aoshi Shinomori
68-year-old min Tanaka (Tekkonkinkreet, The Twilight Samurai, 47 Ronin remake) as Nenji Kashiwazaki/Okina
47-year-old Kazufumi Miyazawa (The Boom music band) as Toshimichi Ōkubo
39-year-old Yukiyoshi Ozawa (Umi no Hotaru) as Hirobumi Itō
25-year-old model Maryjun Takahashi as Yumi Komagata
The cast of the Juppongatana (Ten Swords), a group of elite swordsmen led by Shishio (played by Tatsuya Fujiwara), include:
- Ryōsuke Miura as Chō Sawagejō
- Kenichi Takitō as Hōji Sadojima
- Tomomi Maruyama as Anji Yūkyūzan
- Matsu Murata as Usui Uonuma
- Hiroko Yashiki as Kamatari Honjō
- Yuuya Hara as Henya Kariwa
- Takao Yamada as Iwanbō
- Kentarō Shimazu as Saizuchi
- Kōta Yamaguchi as Fuji
Watsuki's manga ran from 1994 to 1999 in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump magazine and sold over 57 million copies. The creator also drew the Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration retelling that launched in Jump Square magazine in May 2012 and ended last year. He is now planning a new Rurouni Kenshin spinoff manga about enemy characters.
An anime series aired in Japan from 1996 to 1998 and spawned several anime film and video projects. Viz Media publishes both manga in North America, while Media Blasters released the television anime. ADV Films released two later original video anime projects and a film on DVD, and Aniplex released these three titles on Blu-ray Disc. Sentai Filmworks released the two more recent video anime series on Blu-ray Disc and DVD, which also covered the Kyoto arc.
Source: Comic Natalie
Images © Nobuhiro Watsuki/Shueisha © 2014 Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Taika-hen/Densetsu no Saigo-hen Production Committee