Akanishi Jin officially announced in “47 Ronin” cast
It was confirmed today that former KAT-TUN member Akanishi Jin (26) is making his Hollywood debut in Carl Erik Rinsch’s “47 Ronin.” Akanishi was earlier believed to be in the movie after his name appeared on unofficial cast listings, but the film’s official website has now dispelled all doubt.
Starring Keanu Reeves, the movie is a 3D retelling of the Chushingura, the famous story of the 47 samurai who avenge their master’s honor. Last month, it was revealed that the rest of the main cast features several famous Japanese faces: Sanada Hiroyuki, Shibasaki Kou, Asano Tadanobu, and Kikuchi Rinko.
Reeves plays the half-Japanese outcast Kai, who joins the ranks of the 47 Ronin. Sanada plays Oishi Kuranosuke, the group’s leader. Akanishi will be taking on the part of Oishi Chikara, the leader’s son and a good friend of Kai.
Akanishi auditioned for the part in Hollywood. His English ability, plus his motivation shown through his training in sword fighting and horseback riding, earned him the praise of Rinsch, who stated that Akanishi is the only one who can play Chikara.
Filming started on March 14 in Hungary. It is reported that filming will move on to London and Japan later on.
“47 Ronin” appears to be scheduled for a November 2012 release in the United States and a December 2012 release in Japan.