Thirteen Assassins

Original Title:
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Takashi Miike (CROWS ZERO) directs the remake of “Thirteen Assassins” (the 1963 film directed by Eiichi Kudo and starring Chiezo Kataoka). Koji Yakusho (MEMOIRS OF A GEISHA) plays the lead as the man who controls the assassins. The assassins include: Hiroki Matsukata, Takayuki Yamada, Yusuke Iseya, Sosuke Takaoka and Mitsuki Tanimura among others. Masaaki Uchino, Koshiro Matsumoto, Mikijiro Hira round out the front offensive line in the supporting roles. In addition, the evil feudal lord is played by Goro Inagaki from the male idol band SMAP which marks his return to the big screen since WARAI NO DAIGAKU (’04). Masachika Ichimura plays Kitou Hanbei, rival to the main star and Inagaki’s staff officer the Akashi clan chief retainer.The production of this classic Japanese samurai drama boasts a wide range audience appealing, all-star cast. The boarding town of Ochiai, the site of the final bloody battle, was reconstructed and shot on a massive open set in Yamagata prefecture ramping up the climax factor and showing off the intricate interior set design.


The setting is March of 1844. Zusho Mamiya, a senior chief of Akashi clan, commits hara-kiri in front of the residence belonging to Doi (Mikijiro Hira), a member of the Council of Elders in the Shogunate. Mamiya's act is a desperate plea against the deranged and brutal Naritsugu Matsudaira (Goro Inagaki), the feudal lord of the Akashi clan who also is the illegitimate brother to the Shogun. As the central government officials stir, Doi, being the second highest ranking official, concludes the necessity to assassinate Noritsugu and swiftly commands Shinzaemon Shimada (Koji Yakusho) to carry this out. To this order, Shinzaemon secretly organizes a hit squad of 12 assassins. Although this assassination plan is a sealed order, Hanbei Kitou, an adviser to Naritsugu uncovers the summary against his lord. Hanbei and Shinzaemon, taught under the same master and sharing the same swordsmanship, finally reunite with each other serving opposing sides. And thus, the feud between 13 assassins and a bloody tyrant begins.


Original Story
Shoichiro Ikemiya
Takashi Miike
Daisuke Tengan
Toshiaki Nakazawa
Jeremy Thomas
Takashi Hirajo
Koji Yakusho
Takayuki Yamada
Masachika Ichimura
Koji Endo
Nobuyasu Kita
Production Design
Yuji Hayashida
Release Date in Japan