Veteran Hollywood actor Tommy Lee Jones, together with co-star Matthew Fox and director Peter Webber, will be paying a visit to Japan next week to promote their movie Emperor. The film, set in post-World War II Japan, is a dramatization and examination of whether or not Emperor Hirohito should have been tried and hanged as a war criminal. The movie is set for release in Japan on July 27.
The three will be gracing an event at the American Embassy in Japan, which was where General Douglas MacArthur, played by Jones in the movie, first met Japan’s wartime Emperor, played by Takatarô Kataoka. Jones, who is also a big fan of the kabuki theater tradition will be visiting the new Kabukiza in Ginza.
The film may court a bit of controversy in Japan, as it deals with the country’s wartime actions that have been in the spotlight again. Various politicians have been chastised by the international community lately for implying that the Imperial Army’s actions during the war were justified or that it is just the historians who can say whether or not Japan actually invaded their neighbouring countries during World War II.
But regardless of the subject matter, and sometimes the accuracy of real-life events, period pieces set in Japan (Flags of our Fathers, Letters from Iwo Jima, Last Samurai) have generally done well in the box office. The fact that Jones is enormously popular in Japan due to his sometimes hilarious Boss coffee and SoftBank White Family commercials will also add to the possibility of success for the film.