’47 Ronin’ Character Posters: Lots of Makeup, Very Little Japanese History

By  · Published on July 23rd, 2013

We haven’t heard a whole lot about Keanu Reeves’ upcoming 47 Ronin (other than a series of delays knocking it back from last November to this Christmas). Now, thanks to IGN, we’ve finally got our first real look at the film, via four character posters.

The 47 Ronin were real people – a group of samurai who set off down a path of vengeance after their leader was forced into committing suicide. Reeves’ take (or, more accurately, director Carl Rinsch’s take) seems to have taken a detour towards the sensationalism of the RZA’s The Man with the Iron Fists. This 47 Ronin is clear fantasy, “set in a world of witches and giants” and featuring Reeves as a new character created for the film – one who leads the Ronin on their quest for justice.

These posters do go a little overboard on the fantastic elements, and in the end they look a little more like banners for superhero characters than for the cast of a martial-arts epic. But at least they assure that 47 Ronin is about as far as you can get from a whitewashed historical epic. Hopefully the final product will have some of the same flair of the RZA’s kung fu epic. Check out the other three posters after the break.


47 Ronin releases on December 25th, and stars Reeves as well as Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa, Hiroyuki Sanada, and Kou Shibasaki.