Chiaki Kuriyama Fandom

New Trivia

Even though Chiaki's Go Go Yubari is not a main character in Kill Bill Vol. 1 and does not appear at all in Kill Bill Vol. 2, she nevertheless has one of the most elaborate credit sequences at the end of Vol. 2. In fact, other than Uma, Chiaki had more "face time" in the credits than anyone else.

Uma Thurman and Chiaki Kuriyama won the Best Fight award at the 2004 MTV Movie Awards. Uma and Quentin Tarantino went on stage to accept the award and both praised Chiaki with glowing compliments.

According to the April 16, 2004 issue of Entertainment Weekly, Quentin Tarantino has "a life-sized dead-on wax version of Kill Bill's psychopathic schoolgirl, Gogo" in the foyer of his LA home. The article also mentions that "the bar [in Tarantino's house] is actually part of Kill Bill's Beijing set. This is also confirmed by Japanese sources where Tarantino asked the Kill Bill crew to reconstruct in his California house the "Go Go Bar" where Chiaki's character stabbed the businessman. When questioned why he wanted that set recreated, he said he wanted to invite Chiaki and others there to party.

NECA, the maker of the Kill Bill action figures, initially did not have plans for a Go Go Yubari toy in the first wave. However upon Quentin Tarantino's personal request, NECA designers rushed to include Go Go in the first assortment which should enter stores in April 2004.

The Japanese businessman in the bar hoped to derive oral pleasure from the young Go Go Yubari. The key is in the word Ferrari. In the Japanese language, the letter L is often replaced by R due to the difficulty in pronouncing L. Sources have informed me that in some parts of Tokyo, Ferrari is just a codeword for fellati[o]. Given that information, the seemingly peculiar question "do you like Ferraris" makes a lot more sense.

Chiaki Trivia

Chiaki turned 19 on October 10, 2003, the day Kill Bill opened in theaters. What a coincidence! The teen princess was born on October 10, 1984 in Tsuchiura, a city in the Ibaraki perfecture. It's not too far northeast of Tokyo on the big island of Honshu.

Chiaki's name in Japanese has four characters (see her name at the top of this page). As with most East Asian names, the last (family) name comes first, then the first (given) name. In Japan, her name would be Kuriyama Chiaki. In the four characters at the top of the page, the first character is kuri, which means chestnut. The second character of yama means mountain. The third character, chi, means thousand and finally the fourth character of aki means bright or clear. So her name roughly translates to chestnut mountain with full brightness.

Chiaki's measurements are bust: 85 cm ( 31.9 inches), waist: 59 cm (23.2 inches), and hips: 86 (33.9 inches). That makes her a size 0 in the American standard size for women's wear chart, which officially gives size 0 the measurements 31.5 in. (B), 23.5 in. (W), and 34 in. (H). And you thought Calista Flockhart was thin.

When Chiaki was younger, she called herself Chaki.

Chiaki-Related Kill Bill Trivia

Chiaki was deprived of her Go Go Ball from Kill Bill. Despite repeated pleas, Miramax has refused to give her the 9 lb. weapon as a souvenir. The Go Go Ball she holds in the pages of Eiga HIHO magazine was a replica made by Hiroshi Samukawae specifically for that photoshoot.

The fight between the Bride and Go Go in Kill Bill is the favorite scene of not only most film critics but Quentin Tarantino himself. He absolutely loves that sequence. It's unfortunate that Go Go does not survive though. And despite the fact that many guys desire Go Go, it's Uma who would finally "nail" her.

Go Go's image was inspired by Saya, the protagonist of Blood, the Last Vampire. Released in 2000, the 50-minute anime was the work of Production I.G. (Ishikawa/Goto), the powerhouse behind Ghost in the Shell and Jin-Roh. The studio also produced the animated sequence of Kill Bill. During the shooting of the revenge film, Quentin Tarantino had Chiaki watch portions of Blood, the Last Vampire.

Neither Go Go nor Yubari are proper Japanese names. Yubari is the name of a Hokkaido town and is not a last name. Go Go was named after Mach GoGoGo, one of Tarantino's favorite animes when he was young. Mach GoGoGo is marketed in the United States as Speed Racer. Ironically, O-Ren is a real Japanese first name even though it's a rare one only older Japanese ladies have. It does not rank among popular names given to the younger generation.

Years ago, Quentin Tarantino went to Yubari, Japan for the annual Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival with his first movie, Resevoir Dogs. It was his very first time going to the land of the rising sun. The small town of Yubari made such an impression on Tarantino that he chose Yubari as Go Go's last name. Yubari, if you're curious, is in central Hokkaido, the northernmost of the four main Japanese islands. It has a tiny population of 14,000. Bonus: It was at this film festival where Quentin first met Julie Dreyfus, the actress who would play Sophie Fatale in Kill Bill. Sophie, if you remember, is the translator who was "disarmed" before the big melee at the House of Blue Leaves.

Quentin Tarantino has mentioned a number of times that Chiaki Kuriyama is his "Japanese Uma." Considering how highly Tarantino regards Uma Thurman, this is an exceptional compliment.

When asked by a Japanese magazine whether she'll be in Kill Bill Volume 2, Chiaki said "I appear in it as Mach Melon!" The joke is lost on most people outside Japan since it references very specific knowledge about the country. Mach GoGoGo (Speed Racer) is an anime that is at least partly responsible for the name Go Go. Melons are the primary product of the tiny town of Yubari. In fact, Yubari Melons are as famous in Japan as Idaho Potatoes and Florida Oranges are in the states. It's refreshing to know that in many interviews, Chiaki displays a (very) healthy sense of humor.

During the production of Kill Bill, everyone including Quentin Tarantino called Chiaki by her character name of Go Go. Only Uma Thurman called her Chiaki.

Chiaki has been in the U.S. twice. The first time was when she came to the U.S. for training during the production of Kill Bill. The second time was in October 2003, when Chiaki was spotted at both the Los Angeles and the New York premieres.

Chiaki was 17 years old during the shooting of Kill Bill, the exact same age as her character Go Go Yubari.

At 17 years old, Go Go is seen drinking at a Tokyo bar. The legal age for alcohol consumption in Japan is 20. She is also seen driving O-Ren in a Mercedez, an afront to Japan's requirement that drivers must be 18 before hitting the road. Flaunting laws and courting juvenile delinquency with her underaged drinking and license-free driving, who does Go Go think she is? The average American teenager? :P

The concept of Go Go is partially influenced by Sawa, the gun-toting assassin of Kite. When her parents were gruesomely murdered at a young age, Sawa's life became a nightmare. Molested and raped by her so-called guardian, the emotionally-numb Sawa became a perfect weapon. The lolita sex and graphic executions made this anime one of the most controversial titles ever. Two versions were released in the states. A sanitized cut-to-pieces general version and a director's cut. The 45-minute director's cut, although strictly for people over the age of 18, still lacks certain scenes that are considered too objectionable for Americans. The 100% complete Japanese version will NEVER come to the U.S. Even so, the director's cut is so many miles above gratuitous that all standard caveats apply.

Chiaki-Related Battle Royale Trivia

Although Battle Royale the film is very difficult to obtain in the states, the book is strangely widely available at your neighborhood Barnes & Noble. Written by Koushun Takami and released in Japan in 1999, Battle Royale the novel was a huge hit. The film which ensued soon after however deviates from the book in a number of ways and in some instances provides more background and detail to the characters. With respect to Chiaki's character, Takako Chigusa, we learn that her designated weapon was not the flick-knife as shown in the film but a handy icepick. In the book, the boy who confronts her in the infamous scene is not a weak geek but an imposing athlete with muscle. Nevertheless, the battle still ends badly for the young boy and his manhood. The scene that comes after that struggle is worthy of note. In the film, Mitsuko Souma, psychotic class slut extraordinaire, magically appears and shoots at Chigusa without even a simple hello. In the book, this is not so. Mitsuko does show up but she starts an eerie conversation with Chigusa. "I really like girls like you. Maybe I'm a bit of a dyke." Mitsuko is of course the misunderstood nymphet who has no qualms about using her good looks to entice and kill waves of boys (and girls). As Chigusa thinks about the possibilities (yes!), Mitsuko continues, "I was always a little envious. You were so pretty, and you were a better girl than me." Before Mitsuko is even finished, Chigusa realized there was something amiss. Why was Mitsuko referring to her in the past tense? If you haven't seen or read Battle Royale, I don't want to spoil any more story. Go buy the book and movie and get your Chiaki fix.

It seems that Chiaki Kuriyama is not the only talent from Battle Royale involved in Kill Bill. Apparently, Ai Maeda is the voice of young O-Ren Oshii in the Anime portion of Tarantino's revenge adventure. Although Ai Maeda had only a small role in Battle Royale, her younger sister Aki Maeda played teacher's pet Noriko Nakagawa, thus making Aki the female lead in that Japanese film. Quentin Tarantino made an excellent casting decision with Ai Mada as clearly evidenced by her superb vocal portrayal of O-Ren in the animated sequence, a performance that was anything but...two dimensional. Alert: There is some evidence that the Ai Maeda who provided the voice of young O-Ren is an older professional voice actress who has the same name as the the sister of Aki Maeda. Need further investigation into this matter to determine which Ai Maeda worked on Kill Bill.

Battle Royale loyalists must be in nirvana. Not only was Chiaki Kuriyama sashaying across the screen in her Go Go schoolgirl uniform but Battle Royale fans were also treated to a Tarantino-style "replay" of her notorious scene from the Japanese film. In Battle Royale, a boy was brutally stabbed in the crotch multiple times after making "lewd suggestions" to Takako Chigusa, played by always nice Chiaki. In Tarantino's continuity, Go Go was accosted by a Japanese businessman who wanted to buy her love. Go Go's response to his suggestion of Enjo Kosai is a prompt "penetration" to his nether region by way of her knife. Ouch. Guys cried, feminists cheered.

Chiaki wore a yellow track-suit in Battle Royale, not unlike what Uma sports in Kill Bill. Of course, we all know that Uma's attire is a tribute to Bruce Lee's the Game of Death. However, it's possible that Tarantino first hit upon the idea of the yellow track-suit after watching Battle Royale. Tarantino is a huge fan of the violent film; so much so that he decided to recruit Chiaki to be his Go Go. QT also gave credence to the film big time when he showed up at the Boston screening of Kill Bill in a Battle Royale T-shirt.

Go Go Yubari and the Crazy 88 Trivia

The Structure of the Crazy 88. In an interview with Japanese magazine Eiga HIHO, Quentin Tarantino had the following to say about the Crazy 88: "because O-Ren is half-Chinese and half-Japanese, so is her army. So there's 44 Chinese people and 44 Japanese people! But that's part of the mythology I would only go into if I wrote a book." This sumptuous dish of information just begs to be analysed. How could we resist? Thanks to both Japanese and Chinese fans, we might have unraveled part of this mythology that QT alluded to. It all starts with the number 4. In both Japanese and Chinese, the number 4 has the same pronounciation as the word "death" which makes 44 "double death." Make no mistake, 44 is an ominous number and both the Japanese Crazy 44 and the Chinese Crazy 44 use this number to intimidate. In an ironic twist, when you unite the two together, you have 88, a most fortunate and promising number in Chinese, similiar to the number 7 in the West. In Japan, the number 88 is usually associated with the famous 88-temple Shikoku pilgrimage. Coincidentally, Chiaki Kuriyama starred in a film named Shikoku that touches on this thousand year old pilgrimage tradition. In any case, with the large Japanese and Chinese cast for Kill Bill, there's no way Tarantino would have missed the numerology connection. He clearly named the Crazy 88 for the meaning it carries.

If the Crazy 88 were divided into two factions, who led them? Johnny Mo (played by Gordon Liu) is said to be the head of the Crazy 88 yet there is some evidence that leadership, like the group, was bisected in two. If Johnny Mo was only the captain of the Chinese subgroup, who controlled the Japanese subgroup? That person is no other than Go Go Yubari, our darling Chiaki. Note the seating positions during the Yakuza council meeting. O-Ren was in front with second-in-command Sophie to her immediate left. Behind her, on the right sat stony Johnny Mo. Go Go was in the mirror position of the bald fighter except she was on the left. This may signify her position as the captain of the Japanese faction of the Crazy 88, an equal rank with Johnny Mo. Indeed, in many Japanese articles, she's described as a leader of the 88. If she's a member of the Crazy 88, you might question, where's her 88 suit a la Johnny Mo? Eiga HIHO has the answer. In their photoshoot with Chiaki, we finally see her out of her schoolgirl uniform and looking good in the 88 suit. Too bad she didn't have a chance to wear this in the film. But even if Go Go is the head of the Japanese subgroup, her rank seems to be nominal in nature. With her days spent in school, nights at the bar, and bodyguard duties, she had little time to lead the 88, thus making Johnny Mo the de facto boss, an authority he certainly demonstrated on screen. Through analysis, you can also argue that most of the Chinese Crazy 88 were decidedly unlucky (despite the number 88) and perished in the House of Blue Leaves while a good number of the Japanese Crazy 88 were fortunately not at the restaurant and therefore survived. This splinter group could potentially hunt down the Bride in the future and avenge O-Ren Ishii.

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