Japanese director Ryusuke Hamaguchi, whose “Drive My Car” won this year’s best international film Oscar, said Tuesday that he is ready to “take on the challenge” of a Hollywood blockbuster.
The 43-year-old said he was still in shock over the film’s Oscar win.
“Until the very last minute, I was convinced that the Oscars and my life were two things that had absolutely nothing in common,” he told reporters in Tokyo at a news conference with the film’s star Hidetoshi Nishijima.
The 51-year-old actor said he thought the film’s success was due in part to its universality and “the fact that the main character has lost a loved one and yet is trying to get on with life.”
Inspired by a play by famed author Haruki Murakami, the three-hour film garnered multiple honors en route to its Oscar win, including Golden Globes and a Bafta.
Hamaguchi said he had gotten some advice from fellow director Chloe Zhao, whose “Nomadland” topped the Oscars last year and who went on to direct the Marvel superhero movie “The Eternals.”
“She told me ‘Stay sane’ and those words seemed very important to me,” Hamaguchi said, adding that he felt ready to “take on the challenge” of a Hollywood blockbuster, if the opportunity presented itself.
Taking on such a project would depend on the theme of the film and whether the conditions would allow him to “keep his feet on the ground,” he added.
Hamaguchi is the fifth Japanese director to have a foreign-language film win an Oscar, joining film icon Akira Kurosawa, whose “Rashomon” won in 1952.
“Drive My Car” was also nominated for best director and best adapted screenplay, as well as best film, for the first time in Japanese film history.