Hello, folks. Ã‚Â This is probably old news (all too late) but
Henshin!Online has got a perfectly adequate translation of the japanese article. Ã‚Â I’ll post it here in case the site goes down or whatever:
[quote]KILL BILL! Director Quentin Tarantino’s “ultimate exploitation action” film is now on location in Beijing, where rumors are afoot that several famous Shaw Brothers martial arts stars will make appearances in the film, including Chia Hui (aka “Gordon Liu”) of 36 CHAMBER OF SHAOLIN-fame. Old Skool Kung Fu film fans might want to take note that some of KILL BILL! Chinese sequences are being shot on the old Shaw Brothers Studios lot.
Many of the film’s kung fu fight scenes are being choreographed by the legendary Yuen Woo Ping, who recently made a big splash in the west for his work on THE MATRIX and CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON, featuring numerous Chinese, Hong Kong and Japanese stuntmen. Among them is the quintessential skull-cracker – legendary action star Shinichi Chiba.
Chiba is now hard at work on director Tarantino’s KILL BILL! in a triple-fold capacity: Star, Martial Arts Direction and Japanese Dialogue Coach. Tarantino enlisted Chiba’s talent to properly train the principals, including Uma Thurman, for a period of one month in Los Angeles before production began in China in June. “I take my hat off in regards to her enthusiasm,” said Chiba.
Chiba is proud of his cult popularity in the United States as “Sonny Chiba,” well known for his television series THE SHADOW ARMY (Kage-no Gundan, 1979-1985). Tarantino, himself, has been in absolute awe having been able to secure Chiba to support several areas of his film, which will be in production throughout the summer in Beijing, Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico and Los Angeles.
But, expectations for KILL BILL! ever getting off the ground were not favorable over the last five years, since Tarantino wrote the original screenplay. Once the film was finally green-lighted, production was postponed when it was discovered that star Uma Thurman became pregnant. Several replacements were discussed (or rumored to be discussed), but Tarantino held fast to waiting for Thurman, who he specifically wrote the part for. “She’s my actress,” said the director in a recent interview.
Thurman thankfully experienced a healthy birth this past January 15th, which allowed production to move forward in earnest. Meanwhile, Chiba was on contract since last January, and had to wait while the production was postponed, rearranging his schedule to accommodate the pregnant actress. But, Chiba thinks that the wait has paid off. Joining the cast is Lucy Liu, Darryl Hannah, Michael Madsen, Jason Biggs, Vivica A. Fox, Michael Jai White and LaTanya Richardson – who have been hired by Tarantino to star in KILL BILL!
When discussing his experience in the film’s pre-production, Chiba’s usually stern mouth spreads wide, illustrating his enthusiasm for the project, which contains extreme action scenes mixed generously with an internationally-colored cast. “This film is the culmination of a myriad of ideas that have been let loose from the toy-box that is the mind of Tarantino – much like a compilation of short stories into one narrative book,” said Chiba confidently on the production.
This past March, the principal cast began training together under Chiba’s strict eight-hours-a-day curriculum. Even though Thurman had her newborn nearby for nursing and care, she didn’t complain about the intensity of training or exhaustion. “With her hakama on, holding her sword, she bloomed. I am impressed with her natural professionalism,” Chiba extolled.
In regards to Japanese language training for the dialogue scenes, “Even though you cannot elminate their American accents, I have done everything possible for [the actors] to employ proper pronunciation, under my guidance.” Assisting Chiba in training the actors was his daughter, actress/martial artist Juri Manase, which began on March 11th. It is not known at this time if Manase will appear in KILL BILL! with her famous father.
Tarantino’s adoration for Chiba began with the release of such 1970s films as CHAMPION OF DEATH and THE STREETFIGHTER in the States, which established a fan-base for “Sonny Chiba.” In 1992, Chiba continued to chase the dream of American Stardom with ACES: IRON EAGLE III. Then, to advance himself in the Hollywood realm, Chiba attained his Green Card in 1994. Tarantino’s years of adoration became known world-wide with the production of his screenplay for TRUE ROMANCE (1993), which featured heavy Chiba-influence and a Chiba-crazed character played by Christian Slater.
Enthusiastically, Chiba concluded “We are taking Japanese action and culture, and connecting them with the world in a way we want to.” KILL BILL! continues shooting throughout the summer and is scheduled to be released in the US by Miramax on October 10, 2003.[/quote]
SONNY CHIBA SUPERVISES TARANTINO’S NEW FILM
Japanese Action Star Returns In KILL BILL!
translation and additional info by August Ragone, who also did a wonderful Chiba bio (also in the site)
no name, why so glum of the uma news?