Kabuki -- a Japanese form of drama that combines dance, choreography and stylistic makeup -- has been a celebrated art form for centuries. Now, one of Japan’s most famous artists intends to recreate the Star Wars universe with a spectacular one-night-only kabuki play in Tokyo in advance of The Rise of Skywalker's release.
For those who follow kabuki specifically or even Japanese culture in general, the creator will be instantly recognizable. The star of the show is none other than Ichikawa Ebizo, one of the medium’s most popular actors and an icon of the Japanese entertainment industry. Not only is he an ordained Buddhist monk, he is also an award-winning actor in films like Hara-Kiki: Death of Samurai, Ask This of Rikyu and Blade of the Immortal.
The Star Wars-inspired play, officially titled Star Wars Kabuki-Rennosuke Hikarigatana Sanbon -- that’s Star Wars Kabuki-Ren and Three Light Sabers in English -- doesn’t hearken back to the original stories but focuses on the deeply troubled Kylo Ren, the son of Han Solo and General Leia Organa, who famously murdered his own father in The Force Awakens. Ebizo will play Kylo.
“Star Wars Kabuki will depict the love and loss felt by the Skywalker family over the past 40-plus years,” the star told Eiga.com about the show. It will be held at an as-yet unannounced theater in Tokyo on November 28, just about three weeks to the day before The Rise of Skywalker opens worldwide. The venue announcement and ticket sales are due to be released imminently.
Ebizo has spent more and more time in recent years focusing on bringing the art of kabuki to wider audiences. The show is rumored to combine traditional kabuki techniques such as dance and makeup with modern video technology.