Everyone knows George Lucas’ unconditional love for oriental cinema in general and for Akira Kurosawa in particular. In 1980, together with his friend Francis Ford Coppola, he participated in the production of ‘Kagemusha, the shadow of the warrior’, leading to the premiere of the Japanese play in the United States.
We celebrate the anniversary of the actor’s birth by remembering the mythical story in which he planted an excited George Lucas and his galactic war.
Star Wars fans are aware of the Asian influence on the saga, especially when it comes to the honor and clothing of certain characters. The “path of the hero” that Luke travels starts, in a way, from ‘The Hidden Fortress’ (Akira Kurosawa, 1958).
Mika Mifune, daughter of Toshirô Mifune, protagonist of much of Kurosawa’s filmography, has acknowledged that Lucas thought of her father for two succulent roles in his galactic saga. These statements made during the presentation of Tokyo Comic Con in which Steve Wozniak participated as master of ceremonies, confirmed the rumors that had been circulating for years by galactic lies.
“I heard that my father had been offered the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi, but he was worried about the finish of the film and thought it would be negative for the samurai figure, on which George Lucas had based much of the characters and fighting style, “commented Mika, who also assured that the American’s desire to have one of his legends did not stop there:” Then they talked about giving him the role of Darth Vader to have his face covered, but in the end he said no to that too”.
Alec Guinness ended up giving Kenobi a less martial and more elegant tone than one might expect from Mifune. For his part, David Prowse gave Vader more scope and a multitude of anecdotes and internal soap operas for fans that we can enjoy in documentaries such as ‘I Am Your Father’ (Toni Bestard, Marcos Cabotá, 2015).