In the 3D fantasy action film 47 Ronin, Keanu Reeves portrays Kai, a half-British, half-Japanese samurai warrior, who joins a team of warriors seeking revenge for the murder of their master and for banishing their group. An action-packed martial arts film, it also contains elements of the supernatural, including witches and other dangerous forces, making for a mystical and imaginative retelling of Japanese history.
Having bankrolled the movie with a staggeringly big budget, Universal obviously has high expectations. The film is said to be the biggest for Reeves since The Matrix. Carl Rinsch, best known for video shorts like The Gift, is directing the picture. The screenplay comes from Fast & Furious writer Chris Morgan along with Hossein Amini of Drive and Walter Hamada, who is also one of the producers.
The sexy Rinko Kikuchi, of Pacific Rim fame, adds excitement as Mizuki, an evil sorceress who serves Lord Kira, the shogun who kills the Ronin's master. The part of Lord Kira is played by Tadanobu Asano (Thor).
According to numerous reports, the film's behind the scenes drama rivals what is seen on screen. At one point, editing duties were pulled from Rinsch and taken over by Universal co-chairwoman Donna Langley. Although denied by a studio executive, the budget for the movie reportedly swelled to more than $225 million. If this is correct, the movie will have to gross over half a billion dollars globally to break even after the millions to be spent on marketing.
47 Ronin hits theaters Dec. 25, 2013.
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