It was brought to my attention earlier today that an American film based off of the anime Kite by Yasuomi Umetsu is set to come out next year. Though I’m usually wary about American remakes of Japanese films, I must admit that I am pretty excited for this one. I am a big fan of Kite, so the idea of seeing it portrayed as a live action makes me excited. Samuel L. Jackson is one of the stars of the film and the girl who was cast as Sawa really looks the part. So far that sounds excellent. The director….not sure about him, but I’m willing to give him a chance. The project was initially set to be directed by David Ellis, but after his sudden death, a new director was sought to pick up the project, Ralph Ziman. I don’t know much about him, so it’s hard to judge at this time.
From the articles I read online, it seems that the sexual aspects from the original (it was a dark hentai with action, essentially in the original) will not be as prevalent and the film will focus more on the action and corruption. The storyline for the American film still features the murder of Sawa’s parents, but focuses more on her father. In this version, her father is a cop murdered by another officer on the force. I am interested in how they do the ending of this film, though I have a pretty good idea about the outcome, if they stay true to the theme of the original. I am also interested in the action sequences. An interview with Ellis had indicated that he wanted the action scenes to be a bit more realistic, wishing to shy away from The Matrix style of action films. He mentioned parkour was going to be an influence, and I am excited for that. I hope the person that was selected to fill his position stuck to these ideas.
I wonder if the appearance of the character will change much in the American film. I expect the Japanese school girl uniform will be abandoned in favor of something more suitable for an American setting, but one of the things I really liked about Sawa was her signature hairstyle, and the earrings which held the blood of her parents. Since it seems that the film is focusing more on her father (I have seen no mention of the mother in the synopsis) it is likely that the earrings will be dropped, though they could still be worked into the storyline….perhaps as a sentimental gift from her father? Either way, I kind of hope Sawa still has her braided loops.
It also appears to me that the assassin part of the story has been dropped in favor of promoting a revenge drama theme, focusing primarily on finding who killed Sawa’s father. If done well, this could be interesting, but it’s hard to call as of now.
Hearing about this movie got me so pumped that I actually want to revisit my Sawa cosplay. My first real cosplay costume that I wore to a convention was Sawa….it wasn’t up to my standards now by a long shot. I debuted the costume at Otakon in 2003, and no one even knew who I was. A lot of people thought I was Miaka from Fushigi Yuugi….which still irks me because the characters look only about 30% similar…..
If I could re-vamp this costume from scratch, I’m sure I could do it much better than I did in 2003. This time I want to go all out… if I don’t procrastinate, I might have it ready in time for Katsucon…….if I don’t procrastinate, being the key words.
Have you ever seen Kite? If so, how do you feel about this news?