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JUDAS
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INTRODUCTION

Once upon a time, there was a hostess who became a legend—. Judas, Kurumi Tachibana’s semi-autobiographical novel, a bestseller that sold 300,000 copies through its shocking realism and the overwhelming charm of the “evil heroine,” has finally been made into a movie.
Schoolgirl Erika is betrayed by people she trusted and is disgusted by her own weakness. She hurls herself into the world of hostess clubs filled with greed and lust and rises to the top under the name “Kurumi.” Manipulating men and earning a fortune as the number one hostess, Erika fights the fear and loneliness that lie hidden in her heart. Her ambition blindly thrusts her forward toward an unknown goal, but where does she find herself in the end?
Based on the novel by Kurumi Tachibana, Judas the movie depicts vividly with stylish photography the self-destructive ambition and inner turmoil of a woman who lived in a world of greed and lust. The movie delivers the fascination of insatiable ambition, the courage to defeat isolation, and the thrill of an insecure schoolgirl climbing to the top as the number one hostess. Her unshakable sense of loneliness and fear are also portrayed. The sadness of having to turn her back on true love, the fear of returning to her old, weak self if she steps down from her position, the overwhelming sense of emptiness about money… Many women of the modern era with love and job issues of their own are sure to identify with the soul-searching of this woman who lives in a world of glamour feeling hollow and deprived but pushes herself to keep moving forward.

Judas the movie also satisfies people’s curiosity about the backstage of hostess clubs. Fashion and makeup that become more sophisticated as hostesses gain status, the hidden traps beneath smiling faces, techniques for manipulating men, the fierce rivalry between hostesses, betrayal, loneliness, greed, violence. The raw emotions of the women who live on the glamorous “battlefield” of vanity evoke darkness from the hearts of men.
Judas, a movie about a woman’s life from a woman’s point of view, was made by a group of talented women. It is based on a novel by Kurumi Tachibana, who is now a popular author and commentator. It is directed by Izumi Ohtomi, who makes her directorial debut with this film. It stars Ayame Misaki (BUNGO Stories of Desire), a promising actress that beat 3,000 others that auditioned for this role. This true-to-life movie about one woman’s life is brought to the screen by a crew and staff of mainly women, including the producer, casting director, and director of photography.
Judas, a movie about a woman’s life from a woman’s point of view, was made by a group of talented women. It is based on a novel by Kurumi Tachibana, who is now a popular author and commentator. It is directed by Izumi Ohtomi, who makes her directorial debut with this film. It stars Ayame Misaki (BUNGO Stories of Desire), a promising actress that beat 3,000 others that auditioned for this role. This true-to-life movie about one woman’s life is brought to the screen by a crew and staff of mainly women, including the producer, casting director, and director of photography.

The men who surround Erika are played by brilliant supporting actors—Sho Aoyagi, an up-and-rising actor of Gekidan EXILE; the talented Kenji Mizuhashi; Yusei Tajima, a young actor who is also a stage actor; and the individualistic Itsuji Itao.

Judas the movie will take the audience on a spiritual journey with Erika and encourages them to ask “what is real strength? what is real happiness?” to their future selves.

STORY


A town in Saitama prefecture. High school student Erika’s life seems to fall apart when her boyfriend betrays her and scars her heart and her face. The manager of the family restaurant where she works part time refuses to let her work with a scarred face, and she has no way to pay for an abortion. Then Shinkai, the manager of hostess club Elleseine, invites the miserable Erika to come work at his club.
Two days later in the entertainment district of Omiya, Erika steps tentatively into Elleseine. Shinkai is happy to see her and gives her a professional name—Hitomi. With this temporary job that pays 4,000 yen an hour, Erika makes 100,000 yen in five days, and next day she gets her abortion and wakes up crying in the hospital.
Erika parts with her past and stops “believing.” And she decides to work full time at Elleseine. Nawa, a cynical businessman who’s never had a girlfriend in the 35 years of his life, becomes Erika’s first regular customer. She secretly nicknames him Beethoven for his curly hair and makes notes about him in her notebook. Her customers are lonely, greedy or lustful, and each has a “hole” in his heart. She becomes skillful at filling those holes with whatever they desire and stops feeling guilty about lying to them.

A year later, Erika is the number one hostess of Elleseine. But she is frustrated and restless. To fill the “hole” in her own heart, she develops a strong desire to rise to top of Kabukicho, the biggest entertainment district in the East.
Using Kurumi as her professional name, Erika hurls herself into the glamorous battlefield of Eden, a top-class hostess club in Kabukicho. She endures being bullied by Mimi, the number one hostess, and her other co-workers and breaks the club record by rising to the number two position in just two months. But Kurumi has her eyes set at the top. Her rivalry with Mimi heats up. One night, however, Kurumi helps an inebriated Mimi out of a dangerous situation with men, and they develop a sense of camaraderie about fighting in the same jeopardous battlefield. Because of their stressful environment, Mimi develops an eating disorder, and Kurumi becomes addicted to shopping.
One night, Mimi calls in sick and asks Kurumi to attend to Saeki, her most important customer. In the dog-eat-dog world of hostesses, Mimi had decided to trust Kurumi.
In Eden’s VIP room, Saeki orders a bottle of Romanee Conti without batting an eye and, with eyes filled with dark lust, asks Kurumi to join him after she gets off work. Kurumi has mixed thoughts as she realizes the consequences but makes up her mind. That night, she gives into Saeki and has violent, perverted sex with him.
After that evening, Saeki drops Mimi for Kurumi even though he and Mimi had planned on moving in together. Mimi is furious with Kurumi for her betrayal. On the other hand, Kurumi acquires a regular customer who generously spends money at the club and wins the spot as the number one hostess at the expense of isolation.
Kurumi becomes a hostess that men would do anything to possess even if it ruins their lives. She drops Saeki when he goes broke. She makes Beethoven believe that he is special to her and makes him spend money on her, driving the ordinary businessman into a debt of 10 million yen.
Then one day, she meets Ohno, a young finance tycoon. The encounter undermines her resolve “to not believe anything.” Against her will, Erika is helplessly drawn to her “prey” as Ohno starts opening up to her. But she has to keep moving forward and defend her position, or she’ll become her weak, old self… She continues to battle the terror she hides under the façade of her smiling face.
The new, ultra luxurious Dulcinea, a hostess club headhunting number one hostesses from other hostess clubs in Kabukicho… Kurumi leaves Eden to work there as its poster girl. On its opening night, as onlookers watch her with praise and envy, she enters her new workplace arm in arm with Ohno like a queen that has the world in the palm of her hands.
Then one day, something happens that rocks her fate. What does she find at the end of her desperate scramble through the town filled with lust and desire?

Ten rules to become the number one hostess
1. Always contact customers on their birthdays
2. Entertain them before work and bring them to the club with you rather than joining them after work
3. Limit the number of calls you make to customers asking them to come to the club
4. Record your daily sales
5. Wear the same perfume all the time
6. Don’t take days off work
7. Live in a nice apartment and indulge in life
8. Watch comedy programs and study the interactions of the straight man and the funny man
9. Like your customers
10. Be friendly with the club’s staff

CAST & STAFF

Cast
Ayame Mizusaki Syo Aoyagi Kenji Mizuhashi Yusei Tajima NorA
Ryohei Suzuki Noriko Aoyama Itsuji Itao

Staff
Director : Izumi Ohtomi
Born in 1979. After graduating from St. Cloud University in Minnesota, USA, she joined Tristone Entertainment where she assisted in planning and screenplay development and participated in productions, such as Close ZERO (2007), as an assistant director. This is her directorial debut for a movie for release in theaters.

Author of novel : Kurumi Tachibana
Born in 1981. Formerly an ultra popular hostess, she has been featured in various media and appears in morning information programs as a commentator. A writer, a TV talent, and a producer. Judas, her novel on which the movie is based, was a bestseller that sold over 300,000 copies, and her essay “Dokujo no Ikizama” is also on sale now.

Japan's Release Date: January 26, 2013
Official Website: http://judas.jp/
Running Time: 109 minutes

(C)PONYCANYON