Actress Mika Mifune was the special guest at a preview screening for the British coming-of-age film, "An Education," in Tokyo on Wednesday night.
The story deals with a girl, about to turn 17, who starts a relationship with a much older man. It is based on an autobiography by journalist Lynn Barber. Mifune, 27, who married her musician husband Joji Takahashi, 51, when she was 16, was predictably asked her views on the subject by reporters.
"Being with an older man, you don't get treated like a child even at the age of 16, so I had to try my best to grow up," she said. "When we were dating, we always went out together with my mother. But the first time just the two of us had a date, Joji turned to me at Shibuya crossing and just out of nowhere said, 'Hey, why don't we get married?'
"When we married, people were saying 'You're too young, it's not going to work. It's just going to end in divorce.' So I thought I needed to grow up quickly, to become an adult. Of course, there was a big gap between my ideal of an adult woman and myself at that age."
Mifune said she could identify with the film's lead character of the schoolgirl Jenny (Carey Mulligan). "She became a very realistic, honest woman, and I feel like I really understand her. At that age, major events have a huge impact on your life. After meeting Joji, I learned to really respect people older than me, because they know more about the world than I do. Joji taught me that it's very important to cherish every moment."
Asked her impression of the movie, Mifune said, "At first, I thought it was going to be a cute movie, but it's actually very serious. It makes you think. I thought Carey would be a very pure, innocent type of girl. She reminded of what Audrey Hepburn must have been like at that age."© Japan Today