A GRADUATE year student from The Royal Ballet School, who hails from Redditch, is to appear in new epic adventure film starring Keanu Reeves.
Redditch-born Austin Lui, 18, is currently involved in rehearsals at the world-famous Shepperton Studios in Surrey, filming dance sequences for Universal Pictures’ forthcoming film 47 Ronin.
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 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.
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. 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, said: “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.”
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