Tag Archives: Helter Skelter

Japanese Film Festival at San Francisco: From ‘Helter Skelter’ to ‘Lesson of the Evil’

Japanese films don’t only air in Japan alone. In fact, Japanese and fans of J- films are in for a treat at the first ever upcoming Japanese Film Festival held in San Francisco. So what should fans look forward to at the nine day J-Fest in Bay Area?

The J-Film fest is the first of its kind to happen in Bay Area of the greater north of California. This is slated to be part of the J-POP Summit Festival that showcases J-music and culture.  Fans of J-cinema are sure to enjoy nine days of full-length features at the inaugural JFFSF or Japan Film Festival of San Francisco.

Curtains will go up at the San Francisco New People Cinema for the screening on July 27. Both live action and anime flicks will be shown every day until August 4. The hit sword swinging, “Rurouni Kenshin” is included in the J-cinema spectrum.

Other notable titles set for screening at the event include Mika Ninagawa’s thriller, “Helter Skelter” featuring the sexy and talented, Erika Sawajiri. Psycho-thriller, “Lesson of the Evil” starring Hideaki Ito is also included in the J-fest films.

Lesson of the Evil

As for anime otakus, better get those tickets early for the US premiere of “Naruto Shippuden: The Lost Tower”, “Hunter X Hunter: Phantom Rouge”, “Summer Wars”, “The Girl Who Leapt Through Time” and “Wolf Children.”

Naruto Shippuden: The Lost Tower

If you are a J-film lover or Japanese in San Francisco, better be in the Bay Area in celebration of Japanese cinema.

Erika Sawajiri to star in adaptation of “Helter Skelter” manga

Actress Sawajiri Erika is confirmed to be making her return to the big screen with a live-action adaptation of Okazaki Kyoko’s manga “Helter Skelter.” The movie will be just the second feature film directed by photographer Ninagawa Mika, who directed “Sakuran” in 2007.

Sawajiri has not starred in a movie since “Closed Note” in 2007, due to her unprofessional conduct at a PR event for the film. She recently has begun regularly appearing in television commercials again, and she also is starring in a mobile drama that begins next month.

“Helter Skelter” began publication in 2003, and the following year it won the Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize. The story revolves around a woman named Ririko (Sawajiri), a top model in the entertainment industry. However, her perfect beauty has been attained entirely through plastic surgery, a secret that she cannot reveal to anyone.

Ninagawa said that she has been wanting to adapt “Helter Skelter” since even before she worked on “Sakuran.” Producer Uda Mitsuru also revealed that he first talked with Sawajiri about starring in the movie about three years ago, before the adaptation rights had been obtained and the screenplay had been written.

Because the original manga includes mature topics such as sex and drugs, there is some speculation that Sawajiri may have a nude scene in the film. A source familiar with the matter neither confirmed nor denied the possibility.

The supporting cast includes Omori Nao as a prosecutor investigating an incident at the clinic where Ririko underwent surgery, Terajima Shinobu as Ririko’s manager, Mizuhara Kiko as a younger model, Kubozuka Yosuke as Ririko’s boyfriend, Momoi Kaori as the president of Ririko’s agency, and Harada Mieko as the head of the clinic. Ayano Go, Arai Hirofumi, Suzuki Anne, Terajima Susumu, and Aikawa Sho have also been cast.

“Helter Skelter” opens in theaters on July 14, 2012.