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Tuesday, April 16, 2019, 18:45 - 21:30

Two childhood friends reunite and together unify a great nation

Sneak Preview Screening: "Kingdom"
followed by a Q&A with director Shinsuke Sato

Tuesday, April 16 at 6:45 pm*Kingdom tentative 356p
*Please note early start time

In Japanese with English subtitles
Japan, 2019 134 minutes

Directed by: Shinsuke Sato
Written by: Tsutomu Kuroiwa, Shinsuke Sato, Yasuhisa Hara
Produced by: Shinzo Matsuhashi, Naoaki Kitajima, Ryosuke Mori, Koji Hirano
Starring: Kento Yamazaki, Ryo Yoshizawa, Masami Nagasawa, Kanna Hashimoto,
Kanata Hongo, Takao Osawa

Film courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment and Toho

Exactly a year before the hotly-anticipated release of period epic "Kingdom," shooting began on a massive set in Zhejiang, China, with a handful of Japan's leading young actors, 700 crew and some 10,000 extras. The live-action adaptation of the blockbuster historical manga series by the same name, it was moving to the big screen some 12 years after Yasuhisa Hara debuted his first episode in Weekly Young Jump. "Kingdom" has now been collected into 53 volumes and sold an eye-popping 38 million copies. There's no doubt the adaptation will encourage a spike in those sales.

Set during China's Spring-Autumn Warring States period (770 BC-221 BC) in the Kingdom of Qin, the film tells the tale of two young war orphans, Shin (Kento Yamazaki), who dreams of becoming the greatest general under the heavens, and Hyou (Ryo Yoshizawa), who just wants to win against Shin in their daily sparring matches. They're separated in their teens, when an emissary from the king takes Hyou away to work in the palace. Shin continues to train alone and dream big. Then one day, Hyou suddenly returns.

He bears an urgent message, leading Shin to a surprising encounter with Eisei (also Yoshizawa), a young King of Qin who dreams of uniting all the Warring States under a single banner. But Eisei's half-brother Seikyou (Kanata Hongo) has led a successful coup, and before unification, Eisei must first amass enough allies to help him reclaim the throne. Shin signs up, but the challenge is staggering: Seikyou has 80,000 soldiers on his side.

Propulsively and colorfully directed by Shinsuke Sato, who has a particular wizardry with live-action adaptations of popular manga series, "Kingdom" achieves a widescreen grandeur and heroic scale that are rare in Japan, ensuring that the film will find fans even when audiences aren't familiar with the original.

Please join us for this screening of "Kingdom" just before its Japan premiere on April 19.

For more (in Japanese):

Director SHINSUKE SATO won the Pia Film Festival Grand Prix while attending Musashino Art University, and began to craft blockbuster action hits, many of them international award-winners. Known for his mastery of CG effects in bringing fantastical worlds to life, Sato's major works include "The Princess Blade" (2001), the "Gantz" series (2011), the "Library Wars" series (2013 - 15), "Death Note: Light Up the New World" (2016), "Inuyashiki" (2018) and "Bleach" (2018).

Please make your reservations at the FCCJ Reception Desk (3211-3161) or register below. You may attend the Q&A session without attending the screening, but you will not have seating priority. All film screenings are private, noncommercial events primarily for FCCJ members and their guests.

- Karen Severns, Film Committee


Kingdom tentative 290p.jpg
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