The production of Scorsese’s upcoming feature film recently wrapped, with the director and cast attending a wrap party and a press conference before departing from Taiwan.
Based on Shûsaku Endô‘s 1966 novel of the same name, “Silence” tells the story of Father Rodrigues, a Portuguese Jesuit missionary who is persecuted along with other Christians in 17th-century Japan.
During the press conference, Scorsese told reporters that he first read the novel in 1988. It’s one of his passion projects as he felt that its themes resonated with him deeply:
The subject matter presented by Shusaku Endo was in my life since I was very, very young. I was very much involved in religion, I was raised in a strong Catholic family. … Further reflection is how (we) want to lead our life in the Christian faith … so ultimately this book drew my attention when it was given to me in 1988.
The critically-acclaimed director has been working on the film adaptation for over half a century but was unable to start production due to the lack of funding. All thanks to Emmet/Furla Films, the movie finally secured funding in April 2013 and began filming in January 2015.
Garfield takes the role of Rodrigues, as seen in an exclusive image with Shinya Tsukamoto, who plays a villager named Mokichi. During the press conference, the actor said the adaptation deals “with such deep and difficult material, timeless, and huge in scope, huge in emotion”.
It’s a lifetime that the character of father Rodrigues goes through that we witness. It’s such an agonising lifetime that he has to live through and yet he wrestles with the greatest and most important and difficult questions that we all wrestle with, which is how to live and how does one live a life of meaning, a life of faith, and does that require you to live in doubt as well? That’s just scratching the surface of why I felt drawn to this story and this character.
You can find out more about this movie in a playlist of videos from the press conference below: