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From 'Massan' to 'Chicago'

29 Comments

Charlotte Kate Fox sings at a news conference in Tokyo on Wednesday to promote her upcoming Broadway musical “Chicago.” Fox, 29, who stars as Ellie in the popular NHK drama “Massan,” will play the lead character Roxie Hart in the musical from Oct 26 to Nov 8 at the Ambassador Theater in New York, and at Theatre Orb in Tokyo Dec 4-23.

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29 Comments
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Awesome posture...was it a news conference or news concert ?!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Her commercials with oddly over-enunciated Japanese is absolutely cringe worthy. I hope her acting is better in this.

-11 ( +5 / -16 )

@harvey pekar - That seems harsh considering she only learned Japanese for this drama. I'd say she did pretty well for studying only a relatively short period of time.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

harvey: How is your Japanese? She tried hard and is cute besides.

8 ( +11 / -3 )

She's very pretty.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

i thought she was pertty good in massan for not being scottish and for not having spoken any japanese before she got the role. haters gonna hate.

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Hi @JapanGal,

I'm not criticizing her Japanese, I'm saying it seems they made her use this exaggerated Japanese and an inhaled-helium tone, even all my Japanese friends said it was odd. It's like they wanted her to be this hyper-stereotyped foreigner....

Have you seen the CM? She's riding a bike and screaming Japanese as said by someone who drank 12 espressos.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

My impression is that for someone who does not speak Japanese, she has managed the cultural issues in Japan (including talk shows) extremely well.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Proof! Proof! Here its is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvrgn6vRmkg

This is the making of the CM I'm talking about and the crew are telling her to exaggerate her pronunciation!

Chou---! Kimochi-i----! Watch it, then tell me it's not odd.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

I loved watcing Massan, Harvey for making such a statement without backing facts to them....work for Obama do we??!! Ms Fox did a superb job in Massan, something that 99% of current female Caucasian Hollywood Stars could not do....they can barely act. Her dying scene was very touching. I highly recommend (Harvey) everyone take some time and watch Massan......find it at Gooddrama dot net.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

Hi, @bpsitrep,

Check my above post with the link to my proof and tell me I'm wrong. I've seen Massan and I've seen Miss Fox's other work, her drama demo reels, her comedy demo reels, and believe me, Miss Fox, an incredibly admirable job on Massan, is not better than 99% of white Hollywood actresses.

She's earnest, I'll give her that.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

I think a lot of foreign talent here tend to overact. Maybe the directors tend to elicit those kinds of performances from them or maybe it's because some of them aren't strictly actors but instead are just good-looking people with excellent language skills or else they develop a shtick that can only work on the local audience. Like that "Why Japanese people?" screaming guy. I don't get it, but I can't fault the guy for making the most of his moment. For whatever reason they get themselves on TV and known, I do have to give them credit for learning the language to that level and putting themselves out there.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I think a lot of foreign talent here tend to overact.

Not just foreign talent, Japanese talent too. Asian theater/film is almost entirely overacting, it's their style here.

Maybe the directors tend to elicit those kinds of performances

They do. It's their style.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

She did pretty well in Massan considering her lack of language skills for the role. But that begs the question, why wasn't a competently bilingual actress selected for the role instead? Nothing against Ms. Fox but were there really no foreign Japanese language speaking actresses anywhere in the country that could handle that role?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

My wife was totally into that show, though I couldn't bear to watch it. Wolf, I think they didn't want a fluent Japanese speaker as the protagonist was not fluent to begin with, and much of the drama was related to communication difficulties.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

A good pastiche of this is Bill Murray being coached to love his whisky in 'Lost in Translation' Foreigners get paid to good money to be 'foreign'- something I've always avoided though....,

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Watch it, then tell me it's not odd.

Your excitement is odd, but thanks for sharing the link. Now I know she looks good in jeans.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I watched Maasan. The dying scene was so realistic !Kudos to Miss Fox !

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I saw her on SMAP SMAP a few weeks ago. I thought she did pretty well considering her limited Japanese. Even when the interpreter tried to jump in, she would often try to answer in Japanese on her own. Kudos for handling herself well.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I watched the news conference, and she has an amazing singing voice as well as beauty.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Maybe the directors tend to elicit those kinds of performances They do. It's their style. LOL overacting on purpose!? why is that do you thing , maybe to make the talentless look talented, since the talented actors are overacting also. heres a though, how about they hire people that are actually talented actors instead of there good looks. Much better than the other way around

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Harvey for making such a statement without backing facts to them....work for Obama do we??

No, he works for George "Weapons of Mass Destruction" Bush.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

overacting on purpose!? why is that do you thing , maybe to make the talentless look talented, since the talented actors are overacting also.

What I called 'overacting' is simply a reference from the standpoint of someone from the west. Here it's simply 'acting', as the concept of overacting doesn't really exist. So as to why I think the directors direct them to 'overact' - it's because that's how things are done here.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

harvey et. al.: "Her commercials with oddly over-enunciated Japanese is absolutely cringe worthy. I hope her acting is better in this."

Over-enunciated, or bad Japanese in general after having very limited access to the language... given the role she played; a Scottish woman who married a Japanese man and came over here to help him in Japan, I think she acted the role of a woman whose native tongue is not Japanese quite well.

Anyway, kudos to her for getting to NY, and I am glad she thanked Japanese television for getting the chance. I think it's the first time NHK has cast a foreigner in a lead role and with that kind of story, so the fact that it has benefitted all involved (including Nikka whiskey!) is a good step in involving others in similar projects in the future. Very humble, well made speech. Congrats again.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Japangirl: Harvey learn Japanese wth google, not like Fox who learned Japanese people's Japanese

With her looks, she will be doing fine in USA. .

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Her Japanese was fine. What was unrealistic was that she spoke standard Japanese (hyojungo) while everybody around her spoke dialect (hogen). If she learned Japanese only from living there, and not through formal training, she would have spoken hogen.

I think this reflects the attitude of Japanese today. It used to be that Japanese were extremely uncomfortable with gaijin speaking Japanese. That still sometimes happens. But what is more common now, is that Japanese are happy with gaijin speaking Japanese, but expect this sterilized class-room NHK Japanese, but get really nonplussed if a gaijin speaks Japanese like actual Japanese people do.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@Ishiwara: Then she spoke Hyojungo , I would';t recommend anyone to speak in dialect as what Osaka people speak or Tooku people speak are not understandable to Tokyo people etc. Not as bad as gaijin who learn Japanese from google but ....

Are you recomending hogen? Which Hogen? Kyushu-ben? Ohsaka-ben? Tohoku-ben? Or what? No, formal language is hyojungo-standard Japanese. not funny dialect.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@toshiko I agree with you. It is better for a gaijin to speak hyojungo of course. But I am just saying is that in Ellie's case, if she learned Japanese from her family in Hiroshima, then there is no way that she would have spoken standard Japanese (hyojungo). Why would she be able to speak hyojungo if there was nobody to teach her?

I've met gaijin who live in Osaka and never took a Japanese class, but just learned it from the people around them; they speak Osaka-ben. Similarly, gaijin who live in Tokyo actually don't really speak the clean NHK hyojungo that Ellie speaks, but how ordinary people talk in Tokyo.

Same for Japanese people who live a long time in the Britain, they speak Brit-English, not American English.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Ishiwara:: people in /chugoku prefectures and Kyushu Prefectures all learn Hyojungo in school. I doubt she learned Hiroshima-Ben

/@ you: Japanese people who live a long time in the Britain, they speak Brit-English, not American English

.Because They teach Brit English in Britain, not American English,

Are you saying that In UK they teach American English????

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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