Based on a popular comic and TV toon about a reformed samurai assassin, Keishi Otomo's live-action period swashbuckler "Rurouni Kenshin" has become a smash since its Aug. 25 bow, with Warner Entertainment Japan producing and releasing.
The pic recently surpassed 2 million admissions and $36 million at the box office, and played at the Busan and Sitges fests. Meanwhile, Warner has licensed the pic to screen in 64 countries and territories, where it hopes to continue to knock auds dead.
"Rurouni Kenshin" is latest among a string of successes for Otomo. Born in Morioka (the largest city in a prefecture devastated by last year's earthquake and tsunami), he joined pubcaster NHK straight out of college in 1990. In 1997, he went to Los Angeles to study directing and, after returning to Japan and NHK in 1999, and helmed a brace of hit drama series, including 2007 corporate thriller "Hagetaka: Road to Rebirth," which became the basis of his first feature, "The Vulture," two years later.
Fewer than 40 pct of residents and commuters in Tokyo take specific measures to prepare for a possible huge earthquake beneath the Japanese capital, despite high awareness on disaster prevention, a Metropolitan Police Department survey showed Friday. (Jiji Press )
The man under arrest for fatally stabbing one man and wounding three others during a 10-minute rampage in Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture, on Monday night, told police on Thursday that he wanted to hijack a plane at Haneda airport and fly it into Tokyo Skytree to take revenge on society. (Japan Today )
The 24-year-old suspect in the murder of a man on a street in Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture, on Monday is believed to have posted a profile online in which he identified himself as a "celeb NEET," meaning a celebrity without a job, according to local online news site J-Cast News. (Japan Times )
The proportion of single nonregular Japanese male workers in their 20s who have girlfriends stood at 18.7 pct in 2012, against 30.7 pct for regular employees, a government survey revealed Thursday. (Jiji Press )
Police in Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture, on Wednesday night arrested a 24-year-old unemployed man over four knife attacks within 10 minutes that left one man dead and three others injured on a street. (Japan Today )