WOLVERINE Cast Adds Hiroyuki Sanada, Hal Yamanouchi, Tao Okamoto and Rila Fukushima [Update: Will Yun Lee to Play Villain]

by     Posted 2 years, 132 days ago

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Those of you who were worried that The Wolverine cast would be white-washed can put your fears to rest.  A slew of new casting additions include two veteran actors and two relative newcomers to the screen, all of Japanese descent.  Hiroyuki Sanada (The Last Samurai) and Hal Yamanouchi (The Way Back) will be joined by Tao Okamoto and Rila Fukushima. The latest additions to director James Mangold’s The Wolverine will join Hugh Jackman, who is starring in the title role.  We previously reported that Japanese talent would be featured in the film, which will shoot on soundstages in Australia starting this August along with on-location shots scheduled for Japan.  The Wolverine is currently set for a July 26th, 2013 release.  Hit the jump for more details.

[Update: Variety reports that Will Yun Lee (Die Another Day) has also joined the cast as the film's villain, Harada (aka The Silver Samurai).]

hugh-jackman-wolverine-imageNews on the recent casting additions to The Wolverine (via Comingsoon) don’t fill in many additional plot details, but the roles for each actors gives us a little something to go on.  The Wolverine will reportedly follow the comic book arc from Chris Claremont and Frank Miller in which Wolverine/Logan finds himself as an outsider in Japan.  Sanada will play Shingen, a character created by Claremont and Miller, who was a Yakuza crime boss and antagonist to Wolverine.  Yamanouchi is reportedly playing a character called Yashida, who may be the head of the Yashida clan to which Shingen belonged.   Okamoto will star as Mariko, daughter of Shingen and one-time fiancee to Wolverine.  Fukushima is set to play Yukio, one of the deadliest assassins in Shingen’s clan.  If the script plays out along the lines of the comic, audiences will be in for a lot of heartbreak, betrayal and dishonor to go along with adamantium claws and mutant healing factor.  Sounds like a winning combination.




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  • federale

    Sanada looks more like Logan in that picture than Jackman!

  • ozzie

    i hope they have a secret super villain … wolverine fighting the japanese mafia sounds ho-hum at best.

    • Chad

      Obviously, you haven’t read the mini-series on which the story is based. One of the great limited series ever.

  • Django9000

    Seems like we could’ve possibly used a re-casting for the title role in what “IS ESSENTIALLY” another reboot. Or ‘darker re-imagining’, to be politically correct about it.

    I was psyched to hear Jackman was willing to put on more non-muscle type mass to strike more resemblance to Logan.

    Personally, I think this film – for maximum integrity – should just be called “LOGAN”.

    The BIGGEST question will be : WHEN will we finally get to see THE MASK.

  • CanIHaveASlice?

    I don’t know enough about this film to form any early opinions, but I can say that Darren Aronofsky not directing the Wolverine is one of the most disappointing cinematic developements of my life.

  • Sean

    I wonder if they listed the casting wrong? Yamanouchi looks more appropriate for Shingen, who in the comics is older in appearance. Maybe they’re trying to keep it secret that Sanada is actually the Silver Samurai?

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  • Masshuu il Thulcandra

    Good cast but I wish it wasn’t about Wolverine/The Wolverine whatever! Just don’t get the character in any permutation. Sorry.

  • MisterEd

    People were concerned about white-washing in this movie? I would think most people would be more concerned with stereotyping non-white characters.

    The way things work in Hollywood, most male Japanese actors will play villains and the main Japanese female actress will play the love interest of Logan.

    But let’s read the article just to see if I’m right:

    “Sanada will play Shingen, a character created by Claremont and Miller, who was a Yakuza crime boss and antagonist to Wolverine. Yamanouchi is reportedly playing a character called Yashida, who may be the head of the Yashida clan to which Shingen belonged. Okamoto will star as Mariko, daughter of Shingen and one-time fiancee to Wolverine. Fukushima is set to play Yukio, one of the deadliest assassins in Shingen’s clan.”

    Yep. That’s typical Hollywood casting. XD

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  • jadk157

    A round of applause to the casting director for not fucking up and casting a ton of white actors for the inappropriate roles.

  • Tim W T

    This sounds good so far, hopefully they stick honest and true to the Claremont/Miller take and not transform the story into “the last samurai” or “avatar” where the “white man” learn the ways of the “oriental” crap Hollywood has been feeding us, which in my opinion is very offensive to Asians and other minorities.

    I hope we will see the Wolverine we all know and love who in his own right I quote the Claremont/Miller comic “the most Japanese Westerner I have ever known.”

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