Action star Sakaguchi Tak’s Re:Born still stands as important subject matter of late. His forthcoming appearance at the Iron Dragon TV Action Fest this August is still a headturner and with none other than helmer longtime film partner, stunt multi-hyphenate and film director Shimomura Yuji joining him for the impeding festivities in Austin.
Many topics are sure to come up for curious onlookers as the film marks a stellar return to cinema for the cult favorite who shook the fandom with talk of retirement back in 2013. As it stands, that sudden pivot arose as a result of a dissolving toxic fallout with previous management which apparently forced Sakaguchi’s career nearly into obscurity at the time, which makes Re:Born a more than welcome reception at home and overseas.
Moreover, fans can now possibly look toward the talk of Shimomura’s latest acquisition, Crazy Musashi, designated as a 77-minute one-take film previously hailed as a pairing with film favorite Sono Sion under the title, The Blood Of Wolves (not to be confused with Yakusho Koji’s Yakuza crime drama arriving this year). Indeed, it became clear over time that Sono’s involvement was less so in a co-directing capacity and more toward as an advisor of sorts while it is Sakaguchi who inherently shepherded the project as both star and director; The film was tentatively handed to stunt professional Karasawa Isao after Sakguchi parted ways with his agency.
The film was announced in 2009 catalogue for the American Film Market as a “super genre movie” combining authentic sword action with the latest in visual effects and make-up. In addition, edgy hard rock elements and a plethora of monster, zombie and kung fu fare was thrown in all to be headlined by Sakaguchi’s own stunt team Zero’s at the time following shared credits on Shimomura’s directorial debut, Death Trance, as well as Sakaguchi’s own starring/directing endeavors with Be A Man! Samurai School (2008), and Yoroi Samurai Zombie (2009).
Branded Twitchfilm at the time, ScreenAnarchy documented details about project previously reported at the now defunct 24 Frames Per Second website:
Samurai Seijyuro walks a lonely path with an eerie wolf he calls Jyubei. Elsewhere, the muscle-bound Genbu has fallen into evil ways and transformed into a terrifying incarnation of absolute malevolence, having betrayed his own family and transformed Seijyuro’s father into an animal. Meanwhile, female ninja Kurenai, one of the top members of the Geiga Clan, approaches Seijyuro with a cunning plan. The time has come, and a fateful battle begins. Will Genbu die in order to fulfil his destiny? How will Seijyuro’s destiny be determined by the blood of Wolves?
Make no mistake: Crazy Musashi might have taken on some changes from the details above apart from its title and it’s really beyond me to highlight them beyond what I’ve been able to find out. Nonetheless, the film in its current form stands plenty to gain with the momentum drawn from the success and support for Re:Born, marking Crazy Musashi as yet all the more reason to keep an eye on Sakaguchi after this.
Suzuki Kimmy and Marc Walkow contributed to this article. Here’s Shimomura’s tweet below which appears to be a first look at Crazy Musashi.
Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.
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