The publication of Hiroshi Tasogawa‘s new book All the Emperor’s Men: Kurosawa’s Pearl Harbor has been cancelled. The book, which explores what went wrong for Kurosawa during the production of Tora! Tora! Tora!, was scheduled to be published this July by Kodansha Europe. Unfortunately, in April the Japanese publisher Kodansha Limited decided to suddenly close down Kodansha International, effectively cancelling all new publications that were to come out through the subsidiary, including All the Emperor’s Men.
I must say that this is a major disappointment, as at least for me the publication was to be the Kurosawa event of the year.
Hiroshi Tasogawa worked as a translator, interpreter and researcher for Kurosawa during the time between 1966 and 1968 that the director worked on Tora! Tora! Tora!. Tasogawa’s book could therefore offer an insider’s view into what really happened, and why Kurosawa was effectively kicked out of the project. Equally importantly Tasogawa, who has also worked as a journalist, reporter and academic, has unearthed a cache of American documents dealing with the production and Kurosawa’s role in it, giving him another angle through which to look at the course of events. Tasogawa’s earlier Japanese book on the subject has been very well received in Japan, winning four major awards.
There is currently no information about the ultimate fate of the book. Hopefully, some other publisher will decide to pick it up, but when that might happen, if ever, is anyone’s guess.