|Bold thinker: Vietnamese actor Huynh Dong (first left) plays the role of Phan Boi Chau in the film The Partner. — Photo courtesy of VTV
HA NOI (VNS) — A collaborative film between Viet Nam and Japan about famous 20th-century Vietnamese nationalist Phan Boi Chau, will be broadcast in both countries on September 29.
In Viet Nam, the film will be screened on VTV1 channel at 8pm.
The film was shot from June to July this year, with filming across major cities in both countries.
The film was a joint effort between Viet Nam Television (VTV) and Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS) to mark 40 years of diplomatic relations between Viet Nam and Japan this year.
The 120-minute film, titled Nguoi Cong Su (The Partner), examines Chau's efforts in achieving national independence for the country.
A pioneer of the Vietnamese nationalist movement in the 20th century, Chau lived in Japan from 1905-08, writing political tracts calling for Viet Nam's liberation from the French colonial regime. He was also an integral figure in establishing close ties between Viet Nam and Japan.
The cinematic project highlights the profound friendship between Chau and Japanese doctor, Asaba Sakitaro, which began 100 years ago when Chau visited Japan to seek support for Viet Nam's national independence movement.
"Audiences will get a close-up at this period of history and gain insight into the broader friendship between the two countries," said Do Thanh Hai, director of Viet Nam Television Film Production Centre, at a press conference yesterday.
Well-known Vietnamese and Japanese actors played in the film, including Huynh Dong, starring as Chau, Lan Phuong, Higashiyama Noriyuki and Takei Saki.
Vietnamese actors Dong and Phuong, had to learn Japanese for the film.
"The biggest difficulty that we faced in making the film was the language barrier," said Ayato Matsuda, the Japanese director of the film.
"However, the talents of the actors and collaboration between filmmaking troupes made the film a success," he said.
"When we were about to finish shooting, we felt that we understood each other very well and were very close to each other despite the language difference," he said.
Actors starring in the film said that they had not been aware of the friendship between Chau and Sakitaro before, but said the script had immediately resonated with them.
"It is an honour for young actors like us to portray this special friendship in the film," said Noriyuki, who plays the roles of doctor Sakitaro and businessman Tetsuya in the film.
"I hope that the film can help strengthen the bonds between the two countries," he said. — VNS