Warner Japan is plotting a remake of Clint Eastwood’s 1992 western Unforgiven, and Ken Watanabe (Inception, Letters from Iwo Jima) has been tapped to star. Variety reports that Watanabe will lead the samurai period drama under the direction of Lee Sang-il (Villain). The story will again be set in 1880, but the location has been changed to the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido at a time when Japanese settlers were displacing the native Ainu people. Watanabe will play “a samurai with a fearsome reputation as a swordsman who is living in retirement with his Ainu wife when poverty and a large bounty tempt him into action again.”
Eastwood’s film was a brilliant take on the Western genre as it touched on the darker aspects of the Old West of legend. The film took home Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Editing, with Gene Hackman winning Best Supporting Actor. This new remake, titled Yurusarezaru mono, is slated for a fall 2013 release in Japan.