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  • Book IN APPROPRIATE: A novel of culture, kidnapping, and revenge in modern Japan
  • Movie about Ichihashi Tatsuya, convicted killer of Lindsay Ann Hawker, already in the works — based upon his book. Ick.

    Posted by Dr. ARUDOU, Debito on November 30th, 2011

    IN APPROPRIATE, A novel of culture, kidnapping, and revenge in modern Japan, By ARUDOU Debito

    New novel IN APPROPRIATE, on child abductions in Japan, by ARUDOU Debito

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    Hi Blog. Here’s some ghoulish news. According to Yahoo News below in Japanese, there is a biopic in the works on Ichihashi Tatsuya, convicted killer of Lindsay Ann Hawker, coming out next year based upon his book (which we lambasted here on Debito.org last January as publisher profiteering) about his 2 1/2 years on the lam as a fugitive from justice.

    Now, movies about killers are nothing new (including ones with overtones of hero worship; consider NATURAL BORN KILLERS), and biopics about Japanese killers (the very good VENGEANCE IS MINE, starring a lean and mean Ogata Ken, I saw back in college) are also out there (even though VENGEANCE, although it tries to analyze the killer’s motivations and mother complex, did not spare the audience of the horrific detail of his murderous activity).

    Maybe this movie will do the same (even though many of the details of what Ichihashi did to Hawker’s corpse have not been made public).  But the article below says that the contents will focus on his life as a fugitive and offer insights into Japan’s low life (such as the day-laborer sector of Airin Chiku; cue sympathy for the killer’s hardships?).

    In any case, I for one see this as just more profiteering.  It looks as though this story will be depicted through Ichihashi’s eyes, and there is apparently already quite an online hero cult out there for this creep that the studios would love to cash in upon.

    Again, this sort of media event has happened before, but this is altogether too soon — still seems like moviemakers trying to make a fast yen (and an unknown actor trying to make a directorial debut; he talks briefly below about his “feeling of responsibility” towards the victims, but mostly about how the killer’s account fascinates him, so methinks that’s what the flick will focus upon) before Ichihashi fades from public memory. Ick. Arudou Debito

    /////////////////////////////////

    市橋被告逃亡記を映画化 初監督&主演にディーン・フジオカ大抜てき
    スポーツ報知 2011年11月23日(水)8時2分配信
    http://headlines.yahoo.co.jp/hl?a=20111123-00000020-sph-ent
    Courtesy of SL

    2007年、千葉県市川市で英会話講師の英国人リンゼイ・アン・ホーカーさん(当時22歳)が殺害された事件が初めて映画化されることが22日、分かった。殺人罪などで無期懲役の判決を受けた市橋達也被告(32)が逃亡生活の様子、心境をつづった手記「逮捕されるまで 空白の2年7カ月の記録」をもとに、香港、台湾で活躍する日本人俳優ディーン・フジオカ(31)が初監督、主演に抜てきされた。タイトルは「I am Ichihashi~逮捕されるまで~」で、来年公開。

    映画「I am Ichihashi―」は、市橋被告の手記「逮捕されるまで―」(幻冬舎刊)が原作。前例のない逃亡犯の手記として、公判前の1月に出版され話題になった。

    米アカデミー賞外国語映画賞の「おくりびと」を手掛け、今作も製作するセディックインターナショナルの中沢敏明プロデューサーは「映画の題材として際立っている。本来、映画は影があった方がおもしろい。そんな時にこの題材を見つけた」と説明。07年3月に千葉県警の職務質問から逃れ、09年11月に逮捕されるまでの2年7か月間、23都府県を転々とした市橋被告。映画では、4度の自給自足生活を送った沖縄・オーハ島、作業員として寮に住み込みで働いた大阪での生活を軸に人間の業を描く。

    監督、主演のディーンは香港、台湾で活躍する日本人俳優。日本での実績はゼロ、今作が初メガホンという異例の抜てきとなる。中沢氏が注目したのは、ディーンが高校卒業後、米、香港、台湾を10年以上渡り歩いてきた異色の人生経験だった。「長い間、外から日本を見ていたからか、日本人であって俯瞰(ふかん)的に日本を見られるまれな存在。独特の感性、考え方に強烈なインパクトを感じた」と起用を即決した。

    ディーンは原作を繰り返し読み、担当弁護士を取材。実際に、市橋被告の足跡をたどる旅をして役へのイメージを膨らませた。「オーハ島は平常心を保てない、地の果てのような場所。(大阪)あいりん地区は日本の社会の縮図を見た気がした。体に染み込んだ感覚を作品に反映させたい。今は取りつかれたくらいに四六時中、市橋被告のことを考えている」

    日本中を騒がせた殺人犯役だが「迷いはなかった」と言い切る。「自分の生まれた国で初めての仕事。努力次第だが、先に広がっていくチャンス」ととらえ、強い覚悟で挑む。「覚悟がなければやる意味がないし、やり切ることはできない。遺族の方、事件で悲しい思いをした人たちに責任感を感じる。命の尊さを伝えたい」と力を込めた。

    クランクインは来年1月を予定。市橋被告との接見を望むディーンに、関係者は「被告次第だが、どこかでチャンスを作りたい」と話している。

    ◆リンゼイさん殺害事件 07年3月26日、千葉・市川市の市橋被告のマンションのベランダに置かれた浴槽から英会話講師リンゼイさんの遺体が見つかった。市橋被告は直前に、捜査員の職務質問を振り切り逃走。翌27日、県警に死体遺棄容疑で指名手配される。沖縄・オーハ島での自給自足の生活、顔の整形手術を受けるなどして2年7か月逃亡。09年11月10日、大阪市のフェリー乗り場で逮捕された。死体遺棄のほか、殺人と強姦致死の罪で起訴され、今年7月21日に無期懲役の判決。市橋被告は控訴している。

    ◆ディーン・フジオカ 1980年8月19日、福島県生まれ、千葉県育ち。31歳。高校卒業後、米シアトル留学。現地の大学を卒業後、香港でモデルとして活動。05年に映画「八月的故事」で俳優デビュー。06年から台湾を拠点にドラマ、映画に出演。12月2日に映画「The Road Less Traveled」、来年1月に「BLACK&WHITE」が台湾で封切られる。日本語、英語、中国語を話す。身長180センチ。体重60キロ。血液型A。

    ENDS

    24 Responses to “Movie about Ichihashi Tatsuya, convicted killer of Lindsay Ann Hawker, already in the works — based upon his book. Ick.”

    1. Jim Di Griz Says:

      This is a sickening development, but maybe we can learn something from it (please bear with me).
      For example; why not make a film from police point of view about the manhunt for Ishihashi? Answer; because the J-police were clueless and incompetent, a film like that would embarress them
      Also please note, that like the book the story has changes from being a story of a murderer and a rapist on the run, to just being a story of being ‘on the run’. The actual murder and rape of a foreign national no longer figures in the narrative. It’s become un-important. This is a disgusting kind of revisionism that purposefully takes Ishihashi’s actions out of context. I hope Mr. and Mrs. Hawker raise hell about this development in the international media, and shame this story into going away.

    2. fly Says:

      The sickest part of this is the NJ actress they will get to play Lindsay Ann- whoever takes the part should be ashamed; its a akin to blood money. Cant the family prevent her name being used? (Or even the film being made by extension).

    3. AJ Says:

      As with any film that’s based on a true story, creative license can and will be taken. The directors, writers and producers can turn him into whatever they want, and sideline Hawker completely if they wish. Being Japanese made for a Japanese audience more thank likely sympathetic to the Japanese being targeted by the law, and a dodgy construction company or four for cheap labour, and desperately trying to conceal his identity to evade capture, Lindsay Hawker will fade out of consciousness even further than she already has.

      But we live in a country that’s a little more nationalistic and racially superior innattitude to others. Are we really surprised? Hasn’t this happened before with the Japanese guy who cannibalized a French girl in the 80s?

    4. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @AJ,

      The cannibal was Issei Sagawa. He appeared as a sexual sadist in the film Uwakizuma: Chijokuzeme (Unfaithful Wife: Shameful Torture), and made a hardcore porn movie (his identity was not revealed to the female lead until the end of the film, poor girl). He is a prolific writer and painter, and has made several books (including a picture book) of his crime. He has never served a day in a Japanese prison.

    5. Chris Says:

      Like I said elsewhere, if memebers of AKB48, Arashi or SMAP speak out against the film, that WILL get attention. It would give Japanese a celebrity example to follow. Failing that, you might as well talk to a brick wall. It does hinge though, on getting a NJ actress to play the part. And if they bother to go into detail, one with an English accent. Though of course, for many Japanese, accents are indistinguishable. So, it could be any white girl who wants to make a few extra yen. Let`s hope common sense and decency prevails

    6. jim Says:

      I that all of us in the NJ community should all take a stand and just boycott this film just like the J-Loonies attempted to boycott the cove remember?. Then maybe they would get the irony of it all, but I doubt it.

    7. Loverilakkuma Says:

      I think it’s right time to make Japanese version of “HOT COFFEE” (2011, directed by Susan Saladoff) — a film documentary featuring the victims who got seriously injured due to social and corporate negligence. Maybe we should title “Sour Grape II” or something like that. In this case, the victims are the Hawkers who not only get traumatized by a scumbag and his oily publisher. The shameless promotion of scumbag’s story will eventually sustain a serious injury on them, because it will prod the bullies—scavenging J-media and an inflexible, foreign-unfriendly judicial system.

    8. Claude Says:

      Yikes! I did not know of this lunatic who killed a Dutch girl in France. It turns out he a minor celeb and is walking around Tokyo.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Issei_Sagawa

    9. Charuzu Says:

      To create some visibility on this, would someone like this:

      http://www.bianchi-inuyama.com/bianchi-inuyama/Top.html

      support a protest?

    10. sven Says:

      @Jim Di Griz

      As I recall, the French authorities were the ones who really dropped the ball on Issei Sagawa. I don’t remember the exact details, but I’m fairly sure the French judge didn’t provide the necessary documents to have him tried in Japan, so I don’t think you can only blame the Japanese courts in this case.

      That being said, the fact that he recieved any kind of celebrity in Japan, no matter how small, disgusts me.

    11. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @Sven

      Sagawa was determined to be insane and unfit to stand trial by French authorities and was placed in an asylum until deported to Japan, where he was placed in an asylum on arrival, and checked himself straight out.

    12. Factchecker Says:

      Not so fast, James Grey. Yes, Sagawa was found insane by French authorities and institutionalized. That fact caused a scandal in France, and eager to be rid of it the French extradited him back to Japan. He was forcibly institutionalized in Japan and examined. Japanese authorities found him to be sane and wanted to try him, but French courts refused to hand over anything they had, as once the French legal system found him insane all charges were dropped.

      With no actual evidence or documentation, Japanese authorities could not hold him further as a criminal or try him in court. And since he was found sane, he could not be institutionalized against his will. So yes, he did check himself out, but hardly “straight” out.

      So unless you are arguing that Japanese prosecutors should have tried and convicted Sagawa without evidence ot testimony (which I hope you are not), the Japanese system is hardly to blame for this mess. Blame the French, they made the initial determination of “criminally insane” and then shipped him off to his ultimate freedom when that decision became “problematic” for them. And by refusing to provide the evidence which probably would have landed him in prison, the French let him walk free. Not the Japanese system.

    13. sven Says:

      @Jim Di Griz

      Yes he did check himself out, but only after the French Judge Bruguieres failed to provide a single document to help the criminal case against him, despite requests from Japanese authorities. Admittedly I only know this from a quick browsing of google and a few different articles so there might be something I’m missing, but in Sagawa’s case, I don’t think the Japanese justice system was entirely at fault.
      http://www.newcriminologist.com/article.asp?nid=17

      But back to Ichihashi, the fact that this movie is coming so soon after the trial date is the part that really disgusts me. It hasn’t even been 6 months since the verdict was handed out, and already some no-name is trying to make a quick buck. I can only hope this movies kills the career of everyone promoting it.

    14. masada Says:

      @Sven

      What’s really disturbing is that although the actor is a veritable no-name, the producer, Toshiaki Nakazawa, is attached to the Academy award winning film “Departures (Okuribito),” which may lend this project some undeserved credibility and publicity. Absolutely sickening the way they rationalize their reasons for taking on this sick project as they obviously only view the victim as a “plot point” and not a human being. Both him and this actor/director can burn in hell.

    15. Chris Says:

      Killers receiving celebrity status in Japan has a long history. Abe Sada, back in the 1930s had an affair with a married man. Rather than leave him, she severed his manhood and had it with her when she was arrested. I don`t know what her punishment – if any – was. Lo and behold, there have been several films about her.
      However, in the case of Lyndsay Hawker, the killing of a foreign national adds another dimension. Making a film about her murderer and rapist, and his time on the run…is extremely distasteful. If the Japanese police, who I hold in very low esteem had any competence, there wouldn`t be a story to make a film with.

    16. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @Sven,

      Fair points all. I don’t think I laid the blame for him not being in prison on the Japanese justice system, as I think you are claiming.
      I am merely pointing out that he is the only living cannibal in the world not behind bars, but free on the streets of a first world country. I would ask readers to consider if Jeffrey Dahmer or John Wayne Gacey, or any other cannibal would have been able to sell picture books of their crimes, and star in a porn movie, and what it says about Japanese society and culture that Sagawa has been able to. Maybe I am being… intolerant… and not respecting ‘cultural differences’ because Japan is ‘special’?

      @Factchecker
      Same as the above. I take it from your post that you are replying to my comment. I don’t really much care for what you do (or do not) claim that I am (or am not) implying (NB; you can take that to Tepido.org and quote me on it, if you like)…

    17. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @Chris

      Abe Sada served 5 years in prison of the six she was sentenced to. Her sentence was commuted on the commemoration day of the enthronement of the (mythical) Emperor Jimmu. She had asked the judge for the death penalty.

    18. DK Says:

      And Sada Abe was, of course, immortalised in Nagisa Oshima’s no less mythical 愛のコリーだ / In the Realm of the Senses…

      – One of my favorite Japanese movies, actually. Phwarr…

    19. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @DK

      Yes, she became quite the little celebrity, giving interviews, giving her story to writers and film makers, participating in documentaries, and generally promoting herself as a modern, liberated woman after she got out of prison.
      Let’s hope that Ichihashi doesn’t do the same.

    20. sven Says:

      @Jim Di Griz

      Sorry I misunderstood what you said. I agree that the celebrity he attained is disgusting, but just wanted to make clear that in this case, the Japanese authorities did everything they could to try and put him away.

      But yes, his celebrity, no matter how insignifigant, is deplorable. Sagawa has shown even less remorse for his crime than Ichihashi, and though I think that many serial killers and murderers in the U.S. and other countries also gain some kind of cult of celebrity (morbid fascination and all that), I certainly can’t think of one who walks free.

    21. Jim Di Griz Says:

      @Sven

      Thanks for your comment. Sorry if I misunderstood you.

    22. Rachel Says:

      Whatever protests could be staged would just be shot down as foreigners trying to censor Japanese art, or foreigners trying to violate Japanese people’s freedom of speech, or whatever way the media can spin the story into making the foreigners look like the bad guys. When that happens, remember: you read it here, folks.
      (Shouldn’t mean people shouldn’t protest, though, and I’d gladly send letters / mails to those affiliated with the movie if I knew where to write to them.)

    23. Adam Says:

      As a friend of Lindsay I am disgusted by this development. I wonder if he could actually profit from this film being sold. As it is possible (but not likely) that he will be out in as few as 10 years, the money needs to be traced. As of today Sedic international has not revealed if/what they are paying him. Dean Fujioka is trying to launch his career from bad Taiwanese movies to A-lister by profiting on this crime, which has only recently been solved. The fact that the family was never contacted directly is cowardly and disgusting. I will be organizing a protest of the premiere. Adam James Anderson, message me on facebook if you can help or have advice. Thanks for your comments, it means a lot more than you can imagine.

    24. Bill Says:

      Japan Today posted an article today about Ichihashi with extensive quotes from his “mentor” (Chiba University professor Naoki Motoyama) seemingly sympathetic to Ichihashi (link below). The article paints Ichihashi as a now contrite and sincere young man (“huge tears ran down his face”) who was “provoked” to commit the crime after a quarrel with his ex-girlfriend who apparently has fond memories of her time with him and no longer harbors “bad feelings” toward him (“She’d had many fond memories of their times together, she told him; the encounter made it possible for the two of them to dispel any bad feelings”). I assume the article was translated, or summarized, from a Japanese-language media source.

      I very much doubt that this sort of perpetrator as victim portrayal would have been published if a non-Japanese man had been the rapist/murderer in an identical case involving a Japanese woman. This is certainly not the first case where a Japanese media source deflects responsibility from, and rationalizes the acts of, a Japanese perpetrator who has committed a crime against a non-Japanese person.

      http://www.japantoday.com/category/kuchikomi/view/ichihashis-former-mentor-sheds-new-light-on-2007-hawker-murder

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