why isn’t anyone
talking about Clue: The Movie
life is brief
fall in love, maidens
before the raven tresses
begin to fade
before the flame in your hearts
flicker and die
for those to whom today
will never return
Isuzu Yamada and Toshiro Mifune in Throne of Blood (1957)
Akira Kurosawa: We had a tube running from underground up Nakadai’s leg to over his heart with fake blood flowing in it. When the compressor’s stopper was released, the fake blood shot out of Nakadai’s chest. [Script supervisor Teruyo] Nogami got covered with it. The residents of Gotenba who were watching thought that Nakadai had actually been stabbed. I’d explained earlier about the shoot, but when I said, “Cut!” one guy was waving his arms in shock. His face was white from shock and that scared me. I thought everyone knew what to expect.
Tatsuya Nakadai: I remember it clearly. [Teruyo Nogami was] counting down for us, and when [she] reached 25, we were supposed to draw our swords. As soon as I drew my sword and Mifune cut me down, I felt this impact in my chest. I wasn’t expecting it to be that strong. I was told it’d feel like a pat from a girl. I felt a thud, and everything turned red… The force nearly knocked me over, but that would have ruined the take, so I hung in there, grasping my sword… Then I fell like I was supposed to, and Mifune finished his part, and then Kurosawa called out, “Cut!” He said, “We got it in one take!” And I thought, “What do you mean, ‘we’?” [Laughter]
Favourite Director/Actor Collaborations: Kurosawa/Mifune
Between 1948 and 1965, Akira Kurosawa directed 17 films. Of those 17, Toshiro Mifune starred in all but one. While the two had a falling out after the filming of their last collaboration, Red Beard, their mutual respect for one another remained intact until the end.
Kurosawa has this quality, this ability to bring things out of you that you never knew were there. It is enormously difficult work, but each picture with him is a revelation. When you see his films, you find them full realizations of ideas, of emotions, of a philosophy which surprises with its strength, even shocks with its power. You had not expected to be so moved, to find within your own self this depth of understanding.
— Toshiro Mifune
I am a person who is rarely impressed by actors, but in the case of Mifune, I was completely overwhelmed.
— Akira Kurosawa