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The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Stars of hit action movie 'Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno' in Manila for film's Asia premiere

MANILA, Philippines - Japanese lead actor Takeru Satoh of the hit movie "Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno" thanked Filipino fans Thursday for a warm welcome, saying he hopes the film will pave the way for more Japanese movies to be shown in the Philippines.

The stars and director of the movie travelled to the Philippines for the film's Asian premiere on Wednesday.

Satoh said it was difficult to think of what film to make next. But he said he hopes to "create some great movies" again with Keishi Otomo, director of the Kenshin trilogy.

On Wednesday night, Filipino fans loudly cheered Satoh, actress Emi Takei, actor Munetaka Aoki and Otomo as they arrived on the red carpet before the screening at SM Megamall.

Satoh told a news conference Thursday that the movie about Kenshin Himura, a legendary assassin turned conflicted hero during Japan's Meiji era, may have appealed to Filipino and other Asian fans because action movies have "one language, everyone can appreciate it." But he said the movie also shows the intricacies of Japanese culture in hopes that people will appreciate and understand them.

Satoh, who practiced three months prior to shooting his intense sword-fighting scenes, said he was injured many times during the filming. Aoki said he lost a tooth but did not mind it.

The fast-action film by Warner Bros. Japan begins its regular run in the country on Aug. 20. It is the first of a two-part finale of the franchise based on the hit Japanese comic, or manga, called Rurouni Kenshin.

The action and drama film is about a once-feared swordsman during the turbulent fall of Japan's shogunate in the 19th century who adopts a peaceful life after the arrival of Japan's "new age." It has captivated fans in the Philippines and other parts of Asia.

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