Granada Hotel called The Granada Gazette. What's so special about it, you may ask? It features an article about one of its standout residents, Ed Keane!
For those of you not in the know, Ed Keane played the mayor of New Kirk City (not New York City!) in Mothra (1961), among other roles in such Toho films as Gorath (identified in the article as "Goliath"), The Last War, The Big Boss, and others. Mr. Keane was co-creator of the Kokusai Agency, which supplied movie productions in Japan with foreign (i.e., white) actors.
I contacted the hotel earlier today, and it seems Mr. Keane no longer resides at the hotel, and no forwarding address was given. The manager I spoke with told me that Mr. Keane was always looking for ways to keep active and enjoyed talking about his days in Japan.
Below you'll find a closer look at the article. Enjoy!
Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Sunday, September 16, 2012
September 13, 2012, saw Akira Takarada return to Nakatsugawa, Gifu, to introduce his 1957 film The Green Mountains (produced by Toho Studios) to a packed house at the Nakatsugawa Bunka Kaikan. Co-starring Akira Kubo, Takashi Shimura, Yoshifumi Tajima, Sachio Sakai, and other familiar faces from Toho, it was filmed in Nakatsugawa by director Shue Matsubayashi (The Last War, 1961).
First, a confession. I didn't think very many people would show up. In retrospect, I'm not sure why. I guess I must have figured that, since it was basically just a screening of an old movie in the middle of the week, not many people would show up. Suffice it to say, I was shocked when I saw the line waiting to get inside stretch on for what seemed like miles. Just how many people came? You can see for yourself.
Just before the film screened, Mr. Takarada took the stage to share his memories of the film. Although it was made 55 years ago, Mr. Takarada regaled the audience with his stories. At the end of his presentation, Mr. Takarada was joined by a chorus who participated in the singing of the film's theme song.
The highlight of the event happened at the after-party in a restaurant called Annie Hall. At one point, Mr. Takarada asked me to stand up. He then introduced me to the crowd, talked about G-FEST, etc. It was quite overwhelming to be talked up in such a way by one of my childhood idols. Mr. Takarada also asked me to address the audience (in Japanese, no less!), which I did my best to do.
All in all, it was quite an evening.
Video of Mr. Takarada singing with the chorus can be watched below: