“Motorcycle Boy” The Legendary Tigerman (2018)
Run Time: 8:22
A film by: James F. Coton & Masato Riesser
Produced by: NOSIDE
In association with: Peermusic France / Alter K / Sony Music France & Metropolitana
Key Cast: Takayuki Kaneoya, Kokoro Tanaka, Kohei Osawa
Song: Paulo Furtado aka: The Legendary Tigerman
From Directors James F. Coton & Masato Riesser:
We have always been fascinated by the Bozosoku world with its unspoken rules and the mysticism that is behind the secrecy. We were waiting for the perfect project to dig into it and when “Motorcycle Boy” came along, it was obvious for us. It had all the elements we were looking for to pay respect to this almost extinct gang of bikers that once dominated the roads of Japan, just a few decades ago.
Akira was one of our most stimulating common reference, it felt so much more in sync because the main characters in Akira are all part of a Bosozoku gang. Directly drawn from the ones that existed at the time : the Specter Gang. With all their red outfits, baseball bats, custom bikes and most importantly : Tokyo ! That’s why we had to jump into this project and go back to the very beginning of our fascination for Akira and the Bosozoku culture : to go to Japan and meet the Specters.
With the help of Morgan (our producer at NOSIDE) and our amazing Japanese team (Kenji at Tokyo Act II), we were able to find a promising lead for our main character, Kaneoya Takayuki. Kaneoya was the former deputy chief of the Specter Gang 20 years ago, and now lives a completely different life. The overall vibe of the project and the artistic intent, on top of the music, won him. He agreed to grant us an exclusive peak into his past, reuniting his old gang for a farewell tribute to the Specters.
The need to anchor the project into a contemporary universe and give it a modern face had us seeking out young Bosozoku members. That is how we met this intense and passionate couple : Kokoro Tanaka and Kohei Osawa. To us, they were the last piece of the puzzle, the corner stone to this project to show that despite the extinction of the Bosozoku, the spirit and the fire of its culture is still alive.
Our cinematographer, Alexandre Jamin shoot using a Red Helium camera with anamorphic lenses to achieve a cinematic quality while bringing in other formats (Gopros, DSLR and Analog Film) to achieve the documentary style he had hoped for.
Nothing was staged. The styling, the engines, the locations and the characters are authentic. What was revealed in those few days provided an exclusive and rare look at the Bosozoku world. This could very well be the last time the lifestyle of those mystical Motorcycles Boys are captured.
From Paulo Furtado aka: The Legendary Tigerman
The song Motorcycle Boy is all about fighting for your dreams.
When I was in my early twenties, watching the 1983 Coppola´s movie, Rumble Fish felt so real, so close to my reality in a strange way. I felt the same anger that Rusty James (Matt Dylon) felt for being stuck in a small town, dreamless, with nowhere to go and nothing to do but to hit the streets, drink and fight.
The image of Motorcycle Boy (Mickey Rourke), a half man half God entity, riding his Kawasaki GPZ 550, a guy who explains life through a metaphor of blue and red rumble fish stuck in a fishtank, is the coolest of the cool.
Just all I wanted to be.
We were all meant to fail, right? Might as well fail with style.
When James and Masato (the directors) initially sent me their first ideas for the film which involved going to Tokyo to find a former bosozuku gang, to go through their memories and stories so as to pay hommage to that uncontrolable urge to live and ride, it all just felt too perfect, it all made sense.
The words and souls of Kohei Osawa, Kokoro Tanaka & Takayuki Kaneoya couldn´t be more related to the spirit of my song and to the tribute to Rumble Fish’s Motorcycle Boy.
The bosozuku story is part of Japan´s underground culture and history. It is a fast and burning shooting star which still feeds our imagination and dreams of freedom.
It doesn´t matter if we fail or if we fall. It means that at least we tried.
The Motorcycle Boy reigns.
The Legendary Tigerman