If you were to ask any living filmmaker today about the best directors of all time, Akira Kurosawa would crack each of their top 5. Hands down. Although the Japanese filmmaker’s most notable work is Rashomon, the master director has a visual library that is pretty tough to match. Now, the much celebrated auteur is getting a bit of a resurrection. Per Screen Daily:
China’s Huayi Brothers Media has unveiled an ambitious slate of new projects, including The Masque Of The Black Death, based on an unfilmed script written by Japan’s most influential filmmaker, Akira Kurosawa.
Kurosawa started writing the script in 1975 after directing Dersu Uzala as an adaptation of the Edgar Allan Poe short story, The Masque Of The Red Death. He completed the script before his death in 1998, but it never went into production.
The Poe short story follows a prince and his noblemen attempting to hide from a deadly epidemic behind the walls of a castle. The courtiers hold an elaborate masquerade, as a distraction from the devastation outside, but the Red Death itself turns up as a guest.
Anyone familiar with Kurosawa’s work would understand why the Poe story would be fascinating subject matter. His films showcase a journeyman director with an eye for epic aesthetics. This would of been amazing to watch with him at the helm.