“Snakes and Earrings” lead revealed

Filming for Yukio Ninagawa’s “Hebi ni Piasu” (also known as “Snakes and Earrings”) began on Monday. As announced in September, the movie is based on Hitomi Kanehara’s award-winning, international best-seller of the same name.

The film will star 19-year-old Yuriko Yoshitaka (“Tenten,” “Kayokyoku dayo, Jinsei wa”), who barely made her acting debut in 2006. This role may be a breakthrough for her, given Ninagawa’s reputation, the likelihood of international release, and the mature themes involved. Ninagawa plans to keep the movie faithful to the book, which includes multiple depictions of violence and sex. In fact, one of the conditions for the lead actress is the inclusion of a fully nude scene.

Kengo Kora (“Sad Vacation,” “Tobo Kusotawake”) will play Ama, the protagonist’s boyfriend. ARATA (“Ping Pong,” “Yuheisha Terrorist”) will play the sadistic tattoo artist Shiba.

“Snakes and Earrings” opens in 2008.

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