Sunday, February 05, 2006

Another manga adaptation: "Kabe Otoko"

A film adaptation of prolific manga artist Morohoshi Daijiro's "Kabe Otoko" is currently being filmed in snowy Hokkaidō, with director Hayakawa Wataru at the helm and starring Sakai Masato and Ono Maya.

"Kabe Otoko" (literally "wall man") are strange wall-dwelling creatures that are neither human nor yokai (goblin). They observe the ways of humankind from their unique position, and television plays an important role in their existence. When Nishina (Sakai) tells his TV reporter girlfriend Kyoko (Ono) what he has heard about them, she introduces the story on her show, setting off a chain of bizarre events...

Horror mystery "Kabe Otoko" was first published in 1996. Other works by Morohoshi to get the big screen treatment include his "Yokai Hanta" series, which formed the basis for Tsukamoto Shinya's 1991 Shochiku film "Hiruko the Goblin" (Hiruko: Yokai Hanta), and "Seimei no Ki," which became last year's Ichise Taka-produced "Kidan."

This will be Hayakawa's second feature after his 16mm work "Nana-ni-go," which was selected for the Cannes Film Festival's International Critic's Week in 1999. Hayakawa freelances on films, commercials and other productions in Sapporo, and also teaches at Sapporo International University.

Filming began in Sapporo on January 27th. Hayakawa hopes to complete the film in time to submit it to the Cannes Film Festival in May, and a domestic release is scheduled for this autumn. (sources: Sports Hochi & Hokkaido-jin & Sapporo University)

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