It has been revealed that Japanese-American actor Mackenyu will play the part of Enishi in the upcoming ‘Final Chapter’ film adaptations of Nobuhiro Watsuki’s popular manga series Rurouni Kenshin. Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Final and Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Beginning will premiere in Japan on July 3, 2020 and August 7, 2020 respectively.
The original Rurouni Kenshin manga, along with its anime adaptation, is an internationally beloved series the world over that has made it to over 100 countries worldwide, including North America, UK, Europe Hong Kong, South Korea, and so on. It is one of the best-selling manga series, with over 72 million copies in circulation.
Mackenyu’s character Enishi is an arms dealer on the black market in Mainland China. He’s the main antagonist of the Jinchū Arc, who desires nothing more than to destroy Kenshin and everything associated with him.
Speaking about his thoughts receiving the offer to be involved with his first Ruroni Kenshin role, Mackenyu revealed: “I actually received the offer some years ago, and was incredibly happy about it. But I never imagined what performing in such a famous franchise would be like, nor how the film shoots would go for the action scenes.”
The film’s producer, Koiwai, touched on how they decided on the offer to Mackenyu so quickly. “It’s not possible to adapt a live-action version of the Jinshu Arc without having an actor that can play the role of Enishi, who is such a unique character. An actor who’s still young, has an international presence, and can corner Kenshin with intense action scenes and skilful acting. I don’t think there’s anyone else but Mackenyu, so I had him meet the director, Ohtomo, during the planning stages.”
Ohtomo, the film director, commented on Mackenyu: “When we met, I was captivated by the strength of his straightforward gaze. I remember clear as day when I went immediately to the producer and said there’s no one else but him. To play Enichi’s role, you need to look very youthful as well as sinister. And beneath of all that, you need a pureness and delicateness that’s like descending into madness. His body and sensibility looks far from being Japanese when wearing Enichi’s trademark white hair and orange clothes. He exhibits more than enough potential to be a threat to Kenshin. Without a doubt, his fresh charms have the force to pull this new series.”
Ruroni Kenshin never fails to meet fans’ expectations when it comes to the incredible quality of its action scenes. The action can be credited to Kenji Tanigaki, the action director and stunt coordinator. Looking back at the action scene shoots, Mackenyu said: “They were hard, but I was somehow able to get through it while being supported by the director Ohotomo, the action director Tanigaki, and the action team. My body cried out as the number of shoots piled up each day, but it was a really great experience in the end.”
Mackenyu continues: “There’s a lot of action right from the get-go. I went through a hard time with scenes like when Kenshin and Enichi meet, and the battle that ensues with Kenshin, so I really want people to see it [the film]. I’m a fan too, I watched the last three films. These films are a lot of fun too, so please look forward to seeing themーand to seeing Enichi.”
The first trailer for Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Final/The Beginning will be released next week, on February 21, 2020.
©Nobuhiro Watsuki / Shueisha ©2020 “Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Final/The Beginning” Production Committee
Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Final
Release Date: July 3, 2020
Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Beginning
Release Date: August 7, 2020
Official Website: http://rurouni-kenshin.jp