Rashomon (play)

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Though Akira Kurosawa's film Rashomon is the most famous instance, Akutagawa's stories have also been adapted for the stage.

Source material

Ryƫnosuke Akutagawa's two short stories "Rashomon" (1915 - AKA "The Rashomon Gate") and "In a Grove" (1921 - AKA "The Cedar Grove") were famously fused and adapted as the basis for Akira Kurosawa's award-winning film Rashomon (1950), screenplay by Akutagawa and frequent collaborator Shinobu Hashimoto. In 1951 the film won an honorary International Academy Award, following the success of the film in winning a Golden Lion award at the Venice Film Festival in the same year. The Kurosawa and Hashimoto screenplay deviates from Akutagawa's original stories in a number of ways, most notably by allowing a note of hope to triumph over Akutagawa's dark pessimism.

Stage versions

Fay and Michael Kanin

This 1959 Broadway adaptation by Fay and Michael Kanin ran for six months (January-June) at the Music Box Theatre, New York, starring husband and wife Rod Steiger and Claire Bloom. The Kanins' production was nominated for three Tony awards; for more details see the .

The Kanins' somewhat sentimental script sticks closely to the film, including elements added by Kurosawa that do not appear in Akutagawa's original short stories. The Kanins later went on to write the film screenplay for the Western The Outrage, which also credits Akutagawa (but not Hashimoto). The Outrage was one of several Westerns based...
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