Angelina Jolie’s wartime-based movie Unbroken will finally be shown in Japan over a year after its release despite attempts from nationalists who blasted it as racist to prevent it being screened, a distributor said on Thursday.
The film, directed by Jolie, which depicts an American prisoner of war being tortured by a sadistic Japanese guard, is set to hit screens in February, beginning in Tokyo before being shown in other locations nationwide.
Unbroken is based on Laura Hillenbrand’s 2010 best-seller and tells the story of American Olympic athlete and air force pilot Louis Zamperini, who was captured by Japanese soldiers after his bomber crashed into the Pacific in 1943.
The movie was released in the United States and other countries last December.
Scenes of Zamperini being tortured and starved provoked anger among Japanese right-wingers, who described it as racist and anti-Japanese.
Yuji Sadai, head of distributors Bitters End, told the Kyodo News agency that he wants Japanese moviegoers to watch the film which he said “depicts human beings under the conditions of war”.
Japanese posters promoting the movie describe it as a true story of a “man who survived two years of hell in a prison camp”.
Previously, cinemas in Japan initially ditched plans to screen The Cove — an award-winning 2009 documentary film about the annual dolphin hunt in the town of Taiji — after threats by fishing industry supporters, before it was eventually shown.