Chinese director Zhao Linshan (趙林山) announced that he will be making a remake of the 1998 Hong Kong war film Man Behind the Sun <黑太陽731>, the first Hong Kong film to receive a Category III (NC-17) review. Nick Cheung (張家輝) will star in the film as a victim of human experimentation.
Man Behind the Sun, known in Chinese as Black Sun 731, was a film that centered on the Japanese chemical and research unit 731, which participated in lethal human experimentation during the second Sino-Japanese War. The experiments took place in a large gas chamber located in present-day Harbin of Northeast China. There were over 3000 victims, mainly Chinese and Siberian war prisoners, who underwent cruel medical experiments.
Directed by the late T. F. Mou (牟敦芾), Man Behind the Sun was a highly controversial release due to its graphic violence. It was censored or banned in several countries for a period of time.
According to official reports, the remake will include historical archive footage. The director said he hand-picked Nick from a pool of candidates, expressing that he believes Nick to be the most suitable versatile actor for the main character. Nick has already received the order to shed as much weight as he could to realistically play the victim of medical torture.
Filming is slated to begin in October 2020 at the location of the now-destroyed 731 Detachment in Harbin. In 2001, the government erected a tombstone at the location to commemorate the lost lives.
While the film does focus on Japanese war atrocities, the director stressed that the film is not anti-Japanese, but anti-war. Themes of the film include human compassion and self-redemption.
This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.