• Akira Kurosawa’s The Hidden Fortress has long been cited as an influence on George Lucas’s Star Wars. An avid fan of Kurosawa’s, Lucas would eventually work with the Japanese auteur, executive producing the international version of his 1980 Kagemusha. In this excerpt from a 2001 interview, conducted for the Criterion Collection and available on our special edition of The Hidden Fortress, Lucas talks about the inspiration he took from the work of Kurosawa, which he first encountered in film school in the sixties.


  • By Greg Pavell
    March 26, 2014
    04:05 PM

    Lucas is right in that Foreign Film is often only appreciated through those in the business or those willing to see beyond their own borders. Certainly, Kurosawa is a huge influence to many artists the world over and to those who indulge in Asian culture will come to respect the acting style of Toshiro Mifune...the Brando of Japan. It is very unfortunate that American society is influenced by their government's enemies kist to the point of missing the wonderful film from Iran and Abbas Kiarostami. What would we do if we lost "Criterion Collections" ?
  • By Kat
    March 26, 2014
    05:53 PM

    American Society influenced by government's enemies list? What nonsense! The reason too many Americans miss out on the excellence of foreign films is that their sensibilities have been so coarsened by Hollywood's trash for so many years. I and many other Americans love our foreign films and what we choose has nothing to do with what country produces them. If you love great film you are willing to spend the time and energy to find them and I've never found any better than Kurosawa's gems. These days Korean dramas are almost all my family and I watch. They are influencing all of Asia's viewing these days and hopefully they'll be more popular in the west soon.

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