Midnight Eagle is a visually stunning action movie from Japan. Filmed on location in Japans Northern Alps, it concerns a top secret American forces strategic bomber known as “Midnight Eagle” that suddenly vanishes in the Northern Alps. Its payload is a specialized nuclear warhead. If it were to explode, the entire nation of Japan would be hurled into an unprecedented calamity. An elite squad from the Self-Defense Force able to operate in severe mountains conditions is formed, and heads off to try and recover the fuselage. Of course there are more than one group of people that have an interest in finding the plane and its lethal cargo.

Midnight Eagle is currently playing in select cities, and I recommend that if it is in your city that you check it out. The Internet is a wonderful thing, and with the assistance of a translator I had the opportunity to talk with Izuru Narushima.

Firstly let me say thank you for taking some time to talk to us. And let me congratulate you on producing a very fine movie.

I know my readers want to learn a little bit about you. Can you tell us about yourself?

I was born on April 16, 1961, in Yamanashi, Japan. I started my film career as a screenwriter. My Screen writing credits include “Osaka Gokudo Senso-Shinoidare” (1994,) “T.R.Y.” (2002) and “The Laughing Frog” (2002). My directing debut was in 2004 with “The Hunter and the Hunted”, which earned the Best New Director Award at the Yokohama Film Festival, followed by “Fly, Daddy, Fly” (2005). “MIDNIGHT EAGLE” is the third film.

It is not always easy converting a novel into a movie, was this a difficult process for you?

The original story is a large-scale novel, but I felt the human drama inside. I had difficulties in depicting these as a movie.

The scenery is stunning, it is very stark, and yet very beautiful, was it a challenge to film?

We had the cooperation of some of the top mountain climbers in Japan, and it resulted in a safe shooting without any accidents. It was our theme not to depend on CG (Computer Graphics), but to have actors stand in the real place, which put them in a freezing temperatures. They were working in temperatures as low as -22F, and their faces were really frozen.

I read that in making this movie you had the full co-operation of the SDF (Self Defense Force), something that has never happened before. How did you manage to get them to help?

It is first time to fully cooperate on a film since the Defense Agency has become the Ministry of Defense. The fact that it is not an army, but it is a self defense force, maybe hard to be understood, but Japan has abandoned the rights to go into war in its Constitution. If the war has erupted, they are the ones who will how to fight risking their lives, so they are the ones who wishes the peace most. They have sympathized with the message of the film, which is “to long for peace and to protect important things”, and so they have cooperated with this film.

How does it feel to have Midnight Eagle released in the US?

I am very happy and I hope the feelings for creating this movie will be carried on to the audiences.

What is your next project going to be?

I am still searching for the possibilities.

Izuru, thank you so much for talking with us, and I know I speak for my readers in wishing you every success with Midnight Eagle, and I look forward to your next project.

Simon Barrett


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