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David Poland

By David Poland

The Japanese Trailer For Eastwood's Japanese View Of Iwo Jima

The Trailer

58 Responses to “The Japanese Trailer For Eastwood's Japanese View Of Iwo Jima”

  1. T.H.Ung says:

    I could go on and on about how much I like this trailer. The resolution of the stills you grabbed don’t do it justice. The second shot in the trailer is much better of the boats than the one you picked at the top. The composition and quality of the photography is surpassed only by the intraframe editing and timing of the digital intermediary. Can’t wait to read more about this film(s) and see them.

  2. Dave says:

    Agreed the look of the trailer is remarkable. Is this what the finished movie is going to look like? I mean it’s practically black and white in colour and what colour there is seems to reflect the one-sheet we saw last week. Lovely score as well. After watching the trailer there’s nothing I’d like more than to see these movies back to back in a theatre. Eastwood at 76, what an awesome guy.

  3. Wrecktum says:

    Saving Private Ryan: Special Edition. A brand new version of the award winning 1998 war epic now featuring little seen footage from 1970’s Tora Tora Tora cut into the film. Only in theaters.

  4. Eddie says:

    He should have thrown actors who look like Tommy Lee Jones and Donald Sutherland in there, and made this a prequel to Space Cowboys.

  5. T.H.Ung says:

    Don’t know, but I think this is going to set new standards and raise the bar for artistic expression within the realm of capturing on film, the ultimate high def medium, and late post lab manipulation, compositing and planned re-imagining on a scene-by-scene, theme-by-theme basis. That’s it’s done with an epic war story by a iconic director only makes it more exciting. I think there will be a lot of filmmaking pieces to come talking about this. The people who haven’t seen sun all summer, who’s eyes are bleeding from staring at every detail of each frame are going to get cover stories. If this is digital tape, I’m gonna be eating crow.

  6. Krazy Eyes says:

    The trailer is very nice. The new title that’s been given to the film is stinky.

  7. Aladdin Sane says:

    Fucking A!
    Eastwood’s the man. Love the look of the trailers.
    I’m gonna guess Watanabe is going to cop another Oscar nomination out of one of the films already.

  8. THX5334 says:

    Sooooo bummed about the title change.
    Who is the fucktard that made that decision?

  9. Aladdin Sane says:

    Bah on the title change for sure. It sounds kinda wimpy if you ask me.

  10. Wrecktum says:

    You can tell all that by watching a MOV trailer on the computer, T.H.Ung? “set new standards and raise the bar for artistic expression within the realm of capturing on film”? What films in Eastwood and Tom Stern’s body of work would suggest that?
    I think you’ve read one too many issue of American Cinematographer.

  11. T.H.Ung says:

    Wrecktum, I don’t really want to get into it, but “set new standards and raise the bar for artistic expression within the realm of capturing on film, the ultimate high def medium, and late post lab manipulation, compositing and planned re-imagining on a scene-by-scene, theme-by-theme basis” is what I said. Just so you know, the cinematographer goes away for a long, long time once principal production photography ends and comes back to time with the colorist, intermediary artists and director. Without these additional artists and the technology to do it you can’t create a colorful flash or put color in someone’s face and drain color from everything else. You’ll get the links to the stories later, be patient. You’re right that I’m getting a lot from a trailer on a computer, do me a favor and ask a cinematographer if you can put these lenses on a digital camera yet.

  12. jeffmcm says:

    I’m confused. What is the title change? I didn’t see it in that trailer and I don’t see it on MCN or anywhere.

  13. Tofu says:

    Title change? has them listed the same as they were before.
    Anyone notice the dates listed in the trailer? Looks like 2006 is a GO.
    Still trying too hard to be Saving Private Ryan at any rate.

  14. jeffmcm says:

    Of course those are the Japanese release dates, not the American ones.
    Saving Private Ryan redefined the WWII movie for the current generation of moviegoers, but I have faith that Eastwood will have his own spin.

  15. prideray says:

    The LETTERS FROM IWO JIMA title is likely for Japan only.
    “Variety has confirmed that Ken Watanabe will star in Clint Eastwood’s Red Sun, Black Sand, the Japanese companion piece to his Iwo Jima drama Flags of Our Fathers. The film is set to begin production next week in Los Angeles.
    Steven Spielberg is a producer on both films, which tell the story of the famous WWII battle from each side. DreamWorks and Warner Bros. are partnering on the films, which will have a staggered release later this year. “Flags” is expected to be released first.
    Eastwood, who is in post with “Flags,” will shoot the companion entirely in Japanese.
    Japanese-American screenwriter Iris Yamashita wrote the script, from a story by her and Oscar-winner Paul Haggis, who adapted “Flags.”
    Paramount will release the films domestically, while Warner Bros. International will distribute overseas. In Japan, “Red Sun” will be titled Letters from Iwo Jima.
    “Red Sun” revolves around the real-life Japanese General Tadamichi Kuribayashi, played by Watanabe, who battled American troops for 40 days on the small island of Iwo Jima.”

  16. Hopscotch says:

    Eastwood does small movies, character movies really well. Mystic River, Million Dollar Baby, A Perfect World. These are character movies, not big in scope. Even Unforgiven is, for a Western, pretty short on action and heavy on dialogue.
    Space Cowboys, while a light entertainment, was almost embarassing visually with its effects. I hope they look better here.

  17. jeffmcm says:

    What did you think was wrong with Space Cowboy’s effects?

  18. Dave says:

    >>>Space Cowboys, while a light entertainment, was almost embarassing visually with its effects. I hope they look better here.
    Don’t talk such utter drivel. The special effects on Space Cowboys were done by ILM and they were absolutely stunning. Have you even seen the film?

  19. martin says:

    it looks ok. Well actually it “looks” great, visually. But the trailer didn’t really get my interest up any more than if I hadn’t seen it. And to the guy above, yes this was shot on 35mm, but digital cameras like the Genesis (which Superman was shot on) and the new Arri use the same lenses as 35mm cameras. The digital chip for these new cameras is exactly the same size sensor as 35mm film. The latitude is still slightly less though, depending on the material, so for super-blown out sky shots and constrasty stuff, 35mm is still a little better. Digital cannot at all compete with 70mm yet.

  20. martin says:

    Dave, the effects on Space Cowboys looked cheap, did YOU see the movie?

  21. Dave says:

    Martin, if you thought the effects in Space Cowboys looked cheap, you need glasses. ILM’s fx were extremely impressive and all the more so since audiences knew what a space shuttle lift off looked like, had seen the craft orbiting the Earth and so.

  22. waterbucket says:

    Wow, that trailer is beautiful. Makes me want to see this movie even though I’m not usually big on war movies.

  23. mutinyco says:

    70mm is simply for theatrical exhibition. Nothing’s actually shot at that size. Some movies have been shot at 65mm, then blown up. And sometimes for special engagements 35mm films are blown up to 70mm. But 70mm as a legitimate process is more myth than anything else.

  24. Wrecktum says:

    ?? 70mm is the release film size for 65mm negatives. When people say 70mm they mean 65mm camera neg an 70mm composite print (5mm for the soundtrack).
    T.H.Ung, I still don’t know what you’re talking about, but it’s “digital intermediate” not “digital intermediary.” Is your cousin a color timer or something?

  25. martin says:

    mutiny, virtually nothing is shot in 70 (or 65mm as we’ve determined) anymore. About 10-15 yrs ago the studios/theaters have a shot to showing epics like Far and Away, Apollo 13, etc. in some 70mm theaters. But it didn’t last. I was simply saying that digital cannot compare to larger formats, like 65mm, or certainly Imax which is even bigger than 65. But the highest-end digital cameras do have the same sensor size and approximate resolution of 35mm film once you factor in the jitter, etc. on film prints. Digital cameras are close to replacing film cameras, but the hangup seems to be digital projection which is taking longer than expected. So for a few years there will be many “digitally shot” but filmically projected movies. Almost every hollywood movie now, shot on 35mm or digital, goes through a digital intermediate for color correction, etc. so we’ve been seeing “digital” movies longer than we’ve realized. And now with movies like Superman Returns looking so good, the fact that it was shot entirely digitally was not even mentioned in the press, no one even noticed a quality difference. In fact, one of the few consistently good marks SR got was for it’s photography.

  26. jeffmcm says:

    So the question “what was wrong with the effects in Space Cowboys” goes unanswered.

  27. Wrecktum says:

    IMAX is not bigger than 65mm. It is 65mm. The difference is that each frame is 15 perfs instead of the standard 70mm 5 perf. IMAX film runs horizontally through projectors like old VistaVision film allowing more perfs per frame.
    There are also 8 perf commercial projectors but not many people use them in the U.S.

  28. mutinyco says:

    Superman looked like shit. Had nothing to do with the HD. It was just boring and plastic. Miami Vice was a much more interesting use of digital.

  29. jeffmcm says:

    More interesting is not the same as better, though.

  30. mutinyco says:

    Yes, it is.

  31. T.H.Ung says:

    Wreck, I personified it as an intermediary — must be because I like the process so much. I had a very strong positive reaction to the trailer, it looks so artistic and natural (unstatic) to me, I have a feeling it’s gonna be a hellofa story with a really light AND ambitious directing touch. I love the choice of the last shot of the guy walking into frame, his pace, the note in this hand, that he struggles a tad, the little bit movement in the camera tracking him until he’s right up on the camera, approaches quickly without breaking step and passes through to the other side. I’m thinking, “Where’s he going, I want him to come back,” (you’re howling with laughter). But by the time those gorgeous Japanese letters faded, I was totally bowled over.

  32. jeffmcm says:

    Mutinyco, Pasolini’s Salo is a more interesting movie than Casablanca, but I know which one you have an easier time getting people to see.

  33. mutinyco says:

    That’s a pretty silly argument. We’re talking about cinematography. The specifics here being the dawn of HD as a feature medium. Miami Vice was a better use of HD, and will have a greater and longer influence on the medium than Superman, because it actually sought to explore digital as an aesthetic, as opposed to simply replicating a film look. There was nothing about Superman that required it to have been shot on HD aside from the immense amount of digital compositing.

  34. jeffmcm says:

    I agree that Miami Vice was going for a ‘more interesting’ look. But I think the effect was that it basically just looked grainy and Superman’s clear, clean cinematography look was better. Therefore, one was more interesting but less good.

  35. mutinyco says:

    The grainy look was better. The clean image was flat and boring. People have gotten too used to watching TV.
    Movies always had a bit of grain. Some of the best photographed movies I’ve ever seen pushed the grain a great deal and intentionally degraded the image. Film grain just didn’t translate to the electronic medium.
    Miami Vice was seeking to find a digital equivalent for film grain. It was a work in progress. But in terms of what it represented, it was far more significant than Superman. Miami Vice will be looked back on as one of the first important uses of HD that defined the medium.

  36. jeffmcm says:

    The clean image is kind of flat and boring. But there were moments when I was watching Miami Vice where I thought “was this recorded on Hi-8?” it was so murky and grainy for no good reason. The grain of Collateral was well-done. Here, not so much, in my opinion. I don’t have a problem with grainy images per se but I don’t think it was done effectively in MV.

  37. T.H.Ung says:

    Everything I’m reading here still points to film being the ultimate high def medium. And besides, it transcends all technological advances, i.e. you can transfer it to anything that comes down the pike for as long as you can pass light through it. The beauty of the intermediate is that you shoot on film and get all the advantage of film and then essentially throw it away in a vault and your work flow becomes pure digital. A then the tool box really opens up.

  38. mutinyco says:

    Film doesn’t transcend all tech advances. In fact, as big FX-driven films are concerned, it’s becoming increasingly archaic. Film and digital look very different. And as more elements are digitally generated — from characters to backgrounds — the disparity is becoming more obvious. Especially looking at Peter Jackson’s films, where you’ll have entire environments and sequences existing as digital animation, but with one or two filmed characters composited within the frame. And you can always tell the difference. It doesn’t look like they’re occupying the same physical space.

  39. jeffmcm says:

    So? I can see the seams on a travelling matte from the 1930s too but it doesn’t take me out of the movie.

  40. T.H.Ung says:

    Martin, has the price come down enough for “Almost every hollywood movie now, shot on 35mm or digital, goes through a digital intermediate for color correction, etc.?” And even if it’s true and they are, you can count on one or two hands how many are using it for re-imaging the way this trailer did. This trailer used intermediate process as an artform, didn’t it?

  41. jeffmcm says:

    Actually, the price is pretty low now for digital intermediates on many films. It’s too expensive for short films except those with lavish budgets, but in the lower echelons of feature filmmaking, a digital intermediate is a feasible way to shoot on 16mm or super 16 and get a good quality output to video or 35mm.
    As far as really working the image quality, what we see in this trailer takes a lot more were than mere coloring tweaks to bring out the red in an actor’s cheeks.

  42. T.H.Ung says:

    That’s what I’m saying, the digital intermediate isn’t just a color correcting tool, it’s a work flow. I’m going look it up and link an article tonight or tomorrow.
    Mutinyco, you make an excellent point about FX movies, I stand corrected. For this film, this budget, and this director and cinematographer though, I’m convinced, by what I saw in the trailer, that they made the right choice shooting on film, and that they tested how they were going to shoot for what they were going to do in post.
    I think Collateral broke more ground than Miami Vice. And my favorite, and most defining use of digital as a medium, is a Dogme film called The King is Alive. I can’t remember the directors name — big in commercials in Europe, I think. There are several filmmaker articles describing how it was shot in the desert with PD 100 cameras and camera tested. The film is really a work of art and very enjoyable with a great cast and high jink, everyone dies.

  43. jeffmcm says:

    I really like your last sentence there.

  44. palmtree says:

    I wonder how closely allied the two films will end up being. Will the Japanese version end up being like the Rosencrantz and Guildenstern to the Flags’ Hamlet?

  45. ployp says:

    While interesting and fascinating, making these two ‘companion’ pieces has politics written all over it especially since it’s being made now. Perhaps one day we’ll get a double feature like these on the current war.

  46. Spacesheik says:

    Great looking trailer. I am looking forward to both films (let’s hope they ditch the “Letters” title)
    Quick question guys, I remember in the 1980s I’d check newspapers and always see “70mm” presentations for films such as INDY JONES, STAR TREK, etc and make sure I got those theatre screenings. What happened exactly? Was it the emergence of multiplexes? A lot of multiplexes have large screens – what would eb the problem of running one 70mm print of a new flick?
    Why did studios stop shipping 70mm versions of newer movies out? What happened?

  47. martin says:

    there was a point in time, from the 80’s to the mid-90s where “high quality” multiplex experiences were promoted in the newspaper movie ads. The two main ones were 70mm and any of the new digital sound formats. But by the late 90s no one cared anymore, and now no one looks at the newspaper ads anyway, they look at moviefone or fandango, where these nice techie things aren’t promoted at all.

  48. anghus says:

    i liked the fx in space cowboys. i remember thinking how it was one of the few movies set in space that made it feel very cold and very dark. there was an isolated feeling that is forgotten in many movies in space, where the visual fx teams treat it like the wide open and glorious expanses, instead of a cold, lifeless infinity.

  49. Eric says:

    I’m wondering the same thing as Palmtree. I doubt Eastwood would do anything as gimmicky as this, and it probably isn’t possible with the multiple writers, but I’d be interested in seeing the same scenes from each perspective. Sort of like Back to the Future II, but, you know, serious.

  50. David Poland says:

    As per the cinematography issue – it was fascinating wandering through a half dozen or so of the season openers for the new TV seasons. All of them, sitcom and hour-long alike, were going for the film look. And all but one – I think – was shot with digital cameras.
    One, Heroes, which is goig for a fairly traditioanl look, was remarked on by a compatriot as a bit breakthrough in the use of digital depth of field and other details. Interesting.

  51. T.H.Ung says:

    I’ll find something better, this will do in the meantime.
    “It is important for Hollywood Intermediate while helping to expand the use of this new technology, to also introduce the DI process to the next generation of filmmakers,” said David Waters, Hollywood Intermediate President. Digital Intermediate (DI) is the process of digitizing a motion picture and manipulating color and other image characteristics to change the look, and is usually the final creative adjustment to a movie before distribution in theaters. The digital intermediate process is also customarily done at higher resolutions and with greater color fidelity than high resolution video (HD), and television distribution.

  52. martin says:

    David, did they look “digital” in any way? I by that I mean, did they look cheap or inferior at all? Digital production is happening for many reasons besides quality, just curious if this newest batch of HD shows are an improvement.
    In the high-end camera range, they really shouldn’t look much different from shows shot on film. The lenses are exactly the same, and the chip size is the same. Getting the same depth of field is easy with a digital camera, it just needs some more NDs because digital tends to be faster than film stock. So I’m not sure what the breakthrough would be on depth of field. The only noticeable differences will be in the latitude of black to white since film is still slightly more sensitive in those areas. And lack of grain.

  53. T.H.Ung says:

    Give it a break Martin. This has been going on in TV for a long time. A decade ago, every drama was shot on film, them switched to video and got cheap looking, now it’s trying to re-achieve a film look and meet it’s HD requirements at the same time. Iregardless that “they really shouldn’t look much different from shows shot on film. The lenses are exactly the same, and the chip size is the same,” they do. “Getting the same depth of field” isn’t easy, but it’s getting better. Hopefully not so good, that nobody wants to see a movie anymore.

  54. martin says:

    That’s a weird comment. So because a few dramatic tv shows a decade ago looked like crap and failed, that’s somehow valid today? There’s no time in the past in which video capturing devices have looked indistinguishable from film. Now it can easily pass for S16 as many shows are now shot on, and theatrically it can even compete with 35. Depth of field is a function of sensor size and lenses. The sensor of Genesis, etc is same as 35, and they use 35mm lenses. So DOF is equivalent, you simply need to open up more by using NDs.

  55. Cadavra says:

    The main reason they were doing 70mm blow-ups in the ’80s was because of the 6-track magnetic soundtracks. Once digital sound on 35mm became a reality, there was less incentive to do the blow-ups. You’re right in that it wouldn’t cost a hell of a lot to do one or two 70s for, say, NY & LA, but IMAX (especially in 3-D) has pretty much usurped that throne; throw in the fact that kids today are watching movies on their freakin’ Ipods, and there just doesn’t seem to be the need anymore (though older titles like LAWRENCE and 2001 continue to do well in 70mm rep houses).

  56. jeffmcm says:

    I found the confirmation that ‘Letters from Iwo Jima’ is not a title change but just the Japanese version:

  57. jeffmcm says:

    I did some more research. Maybe not.

  58. KamikazeCamelV2.0 says:

    The trailer still doesn’t have me entirely convinced. The war scenes, while looking good and well made, look familiar.
    I actually think Letters from Iwo Jima has me more intrigued. We rarely see WWII films from the Japanese perspective (and done seriously and not in a ‘they’re evil’ sort of way). Although I can’t really tell what footage is from what film. Ken Watanabe looks like he gives a good performance.
    I still… ugh. I just wish they’d stop making WWII films for a while. Seriously. This year with these two films will make the total of WWII films released 5.

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