IMDb > The Man Who Stole the Sun (1979)

The Man Who Stole the Sun (1979) More at IMDbPro »Taiyô wo nusunda otoko (original title)


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Down 25% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Leonard Schrader (screenplay) &
Kazuhiko Hasegawa (screenplay) ...
View company contact information for The Man Who Stole the Sun on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
9 October 1980 (USA) See more »
A misfit high-school science teacher decides to build his own atomic bomb. He steals isotopes from a... See more » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
8 wins & 7 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A bombastic bombshell of escapist entertainment See more (11 total) »


  (in credits order)
Bunta Sugawara ... Inspector Yamashita
Kenji Sawada ... Makoto Kido
Kimiko Ikegami ... Zero Sawai
Kazuo Kitamura ... Tanaka, the director of the National Police Agency
Shigeru Kôyama ... Nakayama
Kei Satô ... Dr. Ichikawa
Yûnosuke Itô ... Bus Hijacker
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Eimei Esumi ... Egawa
Hiroshi Gojo ... Identikit Officer
Tatsuya Hamaguchi
Hajime Hoshi
Junichi Hosokawa
Akinobu Imamura
Yukiko Inoue
Yûdai Ishiyama ... Detective Ishikawa
Kazuhiro Iwamoto
Rika Kayama ... Student
Morio Kazama ... Asai
Hôsei Komatsu ... Loan Officer
Toshizô Kudô

Kiyoshi Kurosawa ... Suspect on tv news
Kôjirô Kusanagi ... Technician of Phone Company
Yasuyoshi Masuda
Ken Mizoguchi
Yutaka Mizutani ... Police Officer
Midori Mori
Tatsuya Mori
Yôji Mori
Satoru Nabe
Masaharu Nagai
Toshiyuki Nishida ... Loan Collector
Daisuke Odera
Takayuki Ohira
Tomokazu Sakamoto
Ryôichi Satô
Jôji Sawada
Yûji Shikamata
Saburô Shôji ... Detective Mizushima
Nanako Takahashi
Isao Takanami
Chiaki Takayama ... Apartment Manager
Eigo Taniguchi
Kyôko Togawa ... Student
Masao Ueda
Michiyo Yamazoe ... Student

Directed by
Kazuhiko Hasegawa 
Writing credits
Leonard Schrader (screenplay) (as Renâdo Shureidâ) &
Kazuhiko Hasegawa (screenplay)

Leonard Schrader (story) (as Renâdo Shureidâ)

Produced by
Kei Ijichi .... producer
Mataichirô Yamamoto .... executive producer
Original Music by
Takayuki Inoue 
Cinematography by
Tatsuo Suzuki  (as Daruma Suzuki)
Film Editing by
Akira Suzuki 
Production Design by
Yoshinaga Yoko'o 
Set Decoration by
Tomoyuki Maruo 
Kazunori Sawaji 
Masumi Suzuki 
Osamu Yamaguchi 
Costume Design by
Masami Saito 
Minoru Yamada 
Production Management
Yuya Furuta .... assistant unit manager
Kiyoshi Kurosawa .... unit production manager
Yasuyuki Ohtani .... unit production manager
Tsutomu Yamamoto .... assistant unit manager
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Koji Enokido .... assistant director
Takeo Moriyasu .... second assistant director
Shinji Sômai .... assistant director
Yoshiro Takahashi .... second assistant director
Hironari Yano .... second assistant director
Sound Department
Kenichi Benitani .... sound recordist
Mineharu Kitamura .... assistant sound
Yoshio Kojima .... sound effects
Toshio Nakano .... assistant sound
Minoru Nobuoka .... assistant sound
Saburô Takahashi .... sound mixer
Ryôjirô Nishimoto .... stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Takashi Anpo .... still photographer
Takehiko Fukae .... assistant camera
Fumikazu Fukumoto .... additional camera operator
Akihiro Itô .... assistant camera
Seisaku Kimura .... lighting technician
Kazuya Kobayashi .... lighting technician
Hideo Kumagai .... gaffer
Toyomichi Kurita .... assistant camera
Tsunekazu Kurosawa .... assistant camera
Kenichi Nagano .... lighting technician
Yôhei Nagasaka .... still photographer
Kiyoshi Nishiura .... additional camera operator
Riyoji Shigeta .... assistant camera
Makoto Watanabe .... camera operator
Editorial Department
Akio Kawashima .... assistant editor
Yoshio Kitazawa .... assistant editor
Yoshiyuki Okuhara .... negative cutter
Music Department
Katsu Hoshi .... arranger
Osamu Onodera .... music selection
Hidenori Taga .... score producer
Other crew
Haruko Imamura .... script supervisor
Emiko Ninagawa .... wigs supplier
Yasuaki Sakuraba .... publicist
Kimi Yoneyama .... wigs supplier

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Taiyô wo nusunda otoko" - Japan (original title)
See more »
147 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.96 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Canada:R (Ontario) | Singapore:PG

Did You Know?

At one point when Kenji Sawada is fending off the nuclear plant workers, the sound effects are taken from the video game Supêsu Inbêdâ (1978) (VG) which was enjoying massive success in Japan at the time of the movie's release. The movie begins and ends with exactly the same sound: a ticking clock, and then an explosion.See more »
[Phoning in a bomb threat]
Makoto Kido:I'm going to return what I stole -- although I'm going to return in a slightly different form.
See more »
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A bombastic bombshell of escapist entertainment, 28 February 2015
Author: bock_g from Tokyo, Japan

By many accounts, Kazuhiko Hasegawa's second feature film is a bold film, unusually flamboyant for its time (not by Kurosawa standards), and is a milestone in mainstream Japanese cinema. "The Man who stole the sun" was based on a story treatment written by an American screenwriter, Leonard Schrader (of "The Yakuza" fame and the brother of filmmaker Paul Schrader) who lived in Japan at the time. Hasegawa was hired to adapt this idea into a film based on his success from his first feature film, "The Youth Killer" which was hailed as a bold insight into the psyche of a young serial killer. It is interesting to note that Hasegawa was a Hiroshima native who suffered radiation poisoning when he was in his mother's womb as result of the dropping of the atomic bomb (which provides one of the pivotal themes in the film). The starring role of Makoto, the science teacher was given to the Japanese pop diva, Kenji Sawada (also known by his fans as "Julie")whose acting shines on par with his singing. This conscious casting decision (considering how Sawada was at the peak of his solo singing career) characterizes the flamboyant nature of this film. The role of the police officer, Yamashita who chases Makoto toe to toe throughout the film was given to the late Bunta Sugawara (who was known for playing gangster roles) is very over the top, but is a great contrast to the character of Makoto. The plot is quite straight forward a socially awkward science steals plutonium to build his own atomic bomb and threatens the government. Makoto's motivation to use his creation is fittingly unclear and bears some resemblance to a Travis Bickle (a character created by Paul Schrader). The pacing of the film (it is somewhat long, slightly above two and a half hours), somewhat reflects the motivation of Makoto character as the film progresses, the pacing becomes slower (Unusual, given the elaborate car chase shot on location in the middle of Tokyo was the film's climax). These unusual aesthetic choices makes this cult-classic very entertaining in spite of its shortcomings. The film was financially unsuccessful because of it's rather insensitive advertising tag line, (Direct translation "Julie is tough as an atomic bomb") but has gathered a cult following and is considered by some critics as one of the best mainstream Japanese films ever made. This film overall is definitely worth it's praise.

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