Director Takashi Miike (Shield of Straw) is the king of genre filmmaking in Japan and produces a film (sometimes two) per year. He’s basically if Woody Allen made movies that included violent psychopaths and child ninjas. Some of his credits include the horror classic The Audition, Ichi The Killer and the remake 13 Assassins. His work helped influence Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill Vol. 1 and Eli Roth’s Hostel.
Miike’s next entry The Outsider will feature actor Tom Hardy. Best known as Bane in The Dark Knight Rises and our new Mad Max in Fury Road. It will be Miike’s first English film and could end up one to remember. The announcement of the project came back in June. TheWrap updates and confirms the action-thriller has financial backing from Worldview Entertainment and will go into production early next year in Japan.
The film has some very high-level cool factors going on. It’s concept centers around an ex-American G.I. who goes to work for the Yakuza which is Japanese mafia. The crime syndicates are notorious in modern Japan but their first real grab for power started during WWII. Which is the setting for the film.
Miike is known for quick turnaround so I’d expect this film to be ready for festivals and might end up with fall release date. At one point director Daniel Espinosa (Child 44, Safe House, Snabba Cash) and actor Michael Fassbender were attached when the film was setup at Warner Bros. It’s clearly gotten a bit of an upgrade since. It’ll be anticipated by fans of the sub-genre.
Since the last real American attempt to give us a straight-up Yakuza movie was Ridley Scott’s Black Rain in the 80′s. I would suggest anyone interested in what this film could end up looking like. Check out The Yakuza Papers which is a series of Japanese Pinky films which tell stories of Yakuza from this era.