GIRI/HAJI, is an intricate and soulful thriller that explores the butterfly effect of one murder over two cities
Celebrated Japanese stars Takehiro Hira (Hara-Kiri: Death of a Samurai), and Yosuke Kubozuka Japanese Academy award winner Yosuke Kubozuka (Go, Silence) lead the cast, alongside Golden Globe nominee Kelly Macdonald(Boardwalk Empire, T2 Trainspotting), BAFTA nominated Will Sharpe (Flowers), Japanese Academy Award winner Masahiro Motoki (Departures), Justin Long (New Girl, Live Free or Die Hard) and Charlie Creed-Miles (Ripper Street, Peaky Blinders).
Written by BAFTA nominee Joe Barton (Humans), directed by BAFTA winner and Emmy nominee Julian Farino (Entourage, Marvellous) and produced by Sister (Chernobyl, The Split, Don’t Forget the Driver) Giri/Haji plays out across eight episodes in both Japanese and English as the action moves between London and Tokyo, traversing the narrative’s multiple time frames.
STUDIO AKA was commissioned to design and create a 1x60 animated insert for Episode 1 which tells the pivotal back story of a mysterious Yakuza who has arrived in London from Tokyo. Additionally, we created a sequence of animated shots in Episode 5 illustrating a critical moment in the story – sorry, no spoilers!
AKA director Kristian Andrews depicts a grim underworld where inky figures soak the seedy streets of London with blood. The characters were animated in TV paint and composited with Japanese ink wash textures, giving the sequences an ethereal and woozy quality to match Hisateru’s hazy recollection of the ghostly yakuza.
“Samurai swords, Yakuza and fight scenes; this project made my inner 13-year-old very happy!” Kristian says of the piece.
Client: Sister Pictures
Direction: Kristian Andrews
Production Company: Studio AKA