Graduate year student at The Royal Ballet School, Redditch-born Austin Lui, is currently involved in rehearsals at the world-famous Shepperton Studios in Surrey. The 18-year old is involved in filming dance sequences for Universal Pictures’ forthcoming film 47 Ronin, starring Keanu Reeves.
47 Ronin is set for release in November 2012 and is described as a 3D fantasy-adventure, inspired by the brave Ronin warriors of Japanese legend. Directed by Carl Erik Rinsch, the film is set in 18th century Japan and follows Kai (played by Keanu Reeves) and a band of warriors who set out to avenge the death of their master and restore honour to their homeland. The warriors embark on a quest that challenges them with a series of trials that would destroy ordinary warriors.
Keanu Reeves is joined in the film by some of Japan’s best known film actors including Hiroyuki Sanada, Kou Shibasaki, Tadanobu Asano and Rinko Kikuchi.
There are two sequences in the film involving dancers. One of these is at a pivotal part of the film and features the brilliant Japanese actor Hiroyuki Sanada, himself a trained classical Japanese dancer. (Sanada appeared in The Last Samurai with Tom Cruise). The other sequence is a fairytale-type fantasy based around animals which features Austin as a raven and showcases his classical technique.
The audition process was open to every professional dance company and school in the UK. In March, eight dancers were selected for the film, ranging from hip hop, break-dancers and martial arts performers. Austin was the only ballet student to be selected.
Olivia Pickford, the choreographer for 47 Ronin, comments:
‘The film’s dance sequences feature excellent dancers from a range of diverse styles. Austin’s strong classical technique has really stood out and there is one sequence in particular where this features strongly. We have all been really impressed by his artistry, professionalism and willingness to work in a team. Austin is a real credit to The Royal Ballet School’
For more information, please contact Jim Fletcher, Development Manager, The Royal Ballet School on:
T: 020-7845 7074
M: 07768 455667