Japan-Set 'Wolverine' Opts for Cast of Actual Asian Actors

July 10, 2012


And we were cynically assuming they'd just use a heavily-eyelinered Ben Kingsley and some old Mickey Rooney outtakes.

Director James Mangold yesterday added six actors to his The Wolverine, the X-Men Origins: Wolverine sequel that runs off to Japan for a few months to try and forget about how sad and directionless it once was. In casting news that will maybe mean something to you if you've read the Chris Claremont/Frank Miller comics arc the upcoming film is largely based on, The Last Samurai and Rush Hour 3 actor Hiroyuki Sanada has been castas Shingen, while The Life Aquatic's head pirate Hal Yamanouchi is signed on for the role of Yashida. Earning the approval of Michael Bay, models Tao Okamoto (above right) and Rila Fukushima are reportedly playing Mariko and Yukio, respectively. Grimm's Brian Tee, meanwhile, will play crime family scion Mariko's fiancé, a corrupt minister of justice who gets pretty upset when his bride-to-be starts hanging out with Hugh Jackman so much. Marking perhaps the biggest casting move, Elektra's Will Yun Lee (above left) has also joined the cast, and will bring his superhero spin-off expertise to Kenuichio Harada--the character who, in comics, puts on some silver samurai armor and goes by the sort of obvious name of Silver Samurai.

In an oversight that will undoubtedly soon be corrected, Batman Begins and Inception star Ken Watanabe has not yet been cast, and he's getting pretty annoyed waiting for this inevitable call.

(Thanks, Wonderboy!)

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