Dean Fujioka shares stories of working on PURE JAPANESE, music

Dean Fujioka is the kind of artist who needs to keep his hands busy. Between shooting films and creating music, he plans tours and stays healthy. Finally, people around the world will finally be able to see another side of him in his action movie Pure Japanese.

Last month, Pure Japanese started broadcasting on Amazon Prime Video globally. The film is intense, filled with ninja action and yakuza drama that will make your heart race. With Fujioka at the forefront, the Daishi MatsunagaThe film made is definitely a must for all movie buffs and those curious about Japanese culture.

moving train caught up with Dean Fujioka to talk about his work on Pure Japanesethe kind of music her character would have listened to, her own music recommendations, and more.


Hi, dean! We are so excited that Pure Japanese is now available to stream worldwide on Amazon Prime Video! It’s so intriguing and it kept me on the edge of my seat! How does it feel to finally have it out in the world for everyone to see?

I’m actually quite surprised that it went global despite how national and niche the film’s title might sound.

It took me three and a half years to bring this project to the theatrical opening of the film in January. Since then, we have received so many varieties of thoughts and opinions about this experimental device called “Pure Japanese”.

Thanks to all the support, I was very happy to see the film translate to long-term screening until last June and I was also very happy to hear the news of the worldwide release from Amazon Prime Video .

What do you hope viewers will take away from watchingPure Japanese?

“What does it mean to be Japanese in society today?”

Pure Japanese is one of the answers to this question in addition to being an experimental device like the mirror in the sanctuary and/or “PJ Kit” that appears in the film.

We generally use words like “audience” and/or “viewer” to describe those watching the film, but to Pure Japanese, after the theatrical release, I felt it made sense to call you a “user”, a term we often use to refer to people who play games and use apps. The same goes for drug use. That said, I hope you PJ users will experience this experimental device and discover how your soul resonates with it.

Daisuke Tateishi is a very mysterious character. How did you train for the role?

I slowly started preparing for the role probably about 3 months before shooting. At that time, I was shooting Full Metal Alchemist 2 & 3 and The dangerous Venus simultaneously. Now that I think back, it was pretty intense having to go through the workout routine while juggling other projects.

Live action and Ninja shows are very different. Ninja shows are more like dancing, but the action can be more violent or impulsive, so I needed to practice for that. I learned Ninja moves at Nikko. I trained with real Ninja players at Nikko Edo Wonderland a few times, but before that I spent more time in the studio with the action team to master the basic moves.

As the production phase approached, I simply tried to bring my daily life as close as possible to the life of the character. I just kept practicing between shoots.

What kind of music did you listen to while preparing for your role? Would you say this is the kind of music Tateishi would listen to?

This music certainly not only helped Tateishi’s character development, but also refined the idea and sharpened the vision of where this project should be taken.

Igor Stravinsky such as “Firebird” and “The Rite of Spring”, the type of music played in Gagaku nô theaters (ancient Japanese court music), Himekamiand Geinoh Yamashirogumi.

Your work experience on Pure Japanese inspire you to write new music?

i wrote the song “Rotate the Planet” during the filming of Pure Japanese because I had a deadline to meet. The title has a double meaning about the relationship between the species. The Earth itself is a form of life. Earth and humans are hurt but we all live on. It’s about how to deal with those injuries and move on.

I was isolated in the mountains during the filming of Nikko and wrote this song on the hotel tatami overlooking the fog-covered mountains and forest, which is a characteristic view of Nikko.

Do you have any Japanese bands and artists that you would recommend our readers to listen to?

Haru Nemuri

Daichi Yamamoto

Tatsuro Yamashita (not available for streaming)

What are your plans for the rest of 2022?

I have a live tour in September and then some film projects to shoot. In addition to work, stay healthy and gluten-free.

Do you have a message for your Southeast Asian fans?

This movie is a case study of Japanese language users, so I’m very interested to see how this movie will be received by users of other languages. It would be amazing if you could comment on the movie online or on social media. It is all the point of quoting Ludwig Wittgenstein as this film’s epigraph – “If we spoke a different language, we would perceive a somewhat different world.”


Pure Japanese is available to stream worldwide on Amazon Prime Video. Watch the trailer below.


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