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Live-Action Terraformars Film Casts Sukiyaki Western Django's Hideaki Ito

posted on by Egan Loo
Plays genetically altered Komachi, reunites with Lesson of the Evil director Takashi Miike

39-year-old actor Hideaki Ito (Princess Blade, Onmyoji, Umizaru, Sukiyaki Western Django, Lesson of the Evil) will star as Shōkichi Komachi in the live-action film of Kenichi Tachibana and Yū Sasuga's science-fiction manga Terraformars. In the manga, the popular character Komachi received the abilities of an Asian giant hornet through a special surgery, and he joins humanity's battle against genetically mutated insects on Mars.

According to Cinema Today, Ito considered refusing the offer to star in the film, but he eventually agreed due to his interest in the original manga and his trust for director Takashi Miike (live-action films of Ichi the Killer, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney, Yatterman, As the Gods Will, Crows Zero, Mogura no Uta). The two had previously collaborated on Sukiyaki Western Django and Lesson of the Evil.

Ito said that he has been preparing for the start of filming and to push himself to the limits of what he can do. He noted that Miike shoots from morning to night without sleep or compromises, so the actor joked that he dreads the upcoming filming. This will be the first time that a Japanese movie is filming on location in Iceland, and Ito vowed to eat well and build his strength at the gym to maintain his health.

Miike said that Ito "shines in adversity," so he intends to "send him to the 'worst Mars' ever created. Therefore, it's going to be the most glorious film in the world." He previously said, "I'm hoping to prove that an awesome manga can spawn an awesome movie. Underestimate the movie, and you'll get burned!"

Manga creator Sasuga added that he worried that recent Japanese movies lacked "muscles." However, he said that his fears were groundless as this project has "muscles" and a passionate spirit. With Miike at the helm and Ito as the star of the film, Sasuga said that his worries turned to eager anticipation.

Manga artist Tachibana rhetorically asked if there is any other actor who looks like he can save humanity. He added that he looks forward to seeing a native Japanese giant hornet rampaging on the screen.

The film will open in Japan in 2016. Pre-production for the film took two years, and filming will begin in mid-May.

Tachibana and Sasuga launched the original Terra Formars manga in 2011, and Shueisha published the 12th volume on February 19. The manga has 11 million copies in circulation. Viz Media is releasing the manga in North America, and it describes the story:

In the late 26th century, overpopulation on Earth is reaching the breaking point, and humanity must find new frontiers. The terraforming of Mars has taken centuries, but is now complete. The colonization of Mars by humanity is an epoch-making event, but an unintended side effect of the terraforming process unleashes a horror no one could ever have imagined. ..

After humanity's first manned mission to the Red Planet was lost, a second expedition arrives. The explorers prepare to exterminate the cockroaches that were used to transform the Martian environment. They are shocked to discover that the insects have mutated into giant, aggressive humanoids with one overriding goal: exterminate the humans! But this crew of explorers has each undergone the "Bugs Procedure, " terrifying experimental surgery designed to make them more than human...

The television anime adapting the Annex 1 arc of the manga premiered in September, and Crunchyroll streamed the series as it aired. The companion original video anime (OVA) project adapts the Bugs 2 arc on discs bundled with the 10th and 11th manga volumes. The Annex 1 arc takes place 20 years after the Bugs 2 arc.

The original manga also inspired several spinoff manga, including Manpuku Dō and Kaito Shibano's Terra For Police, Shōta Hattori's Terra Formars wa Oyasumi Desu., Serebixi-Ryōsangata's Oshiete! Michelle Kyōkan, and Satoshi Kimura's Terra Formars Gaiden Rain Hard.

The original manga ranked at #3 on the Da Vinci magazine's list of the best male-oriented comics in the first half of 2013. The manga also topped the male readers category of the 2013 edition of the Kono Manga ga Sugoi! guidebook. The manga was also nominated for Manga Taisho award in 2013.

Source: Cinema Today

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