Tokyo Filming Locations: Pt IX – Wasabi

Jean Reno of Mission Impossible fame is the French cop who goes to Tokyo in this 2001 French film directed by Luc Besson. Entering Japan at Narita Airport terminal 2 (18 mins) Reno’s character Hubert arrives in the electric town known as Akihabara after 23 mins (below left) when he gets out of a taxi on the main street and walks down one of the little side streets to the office where he has a meeting with the lawyer who reads out his ex girlfriends will and informs him that he has a daughter. Takashimaya department store (below right) at 2-4-1 Nihonbashi is where Hubert takes his annoying daughter (Ryoko Hirosue) on a shopping spree with some yakuza baddies trailing them which leads to some amusing (?) scenes of Hubert discretely fending them off whilst she is oblivious to it all.


Next up is the Imperial Hotel at 1-1-1 Chiyoda (below) which appears on 47 mins and is where Hubert books into ‘pretending’ that the young under-age Japanese girl is his daughter with the irony being that she actually is not that she knows it.


Fujisawa Golf Club in Kanagawa prefecture (66 mins) plays part to the driving range scene which sees Hubert do a trick shot that would make Tiger Woods proud which he calls “a hole in two” whereby he takes out two guys with an outrageous cartoon-like shot.

The film gets its title from a scene (72 mins) where Hubert eats a load of the green-coloured horse-radish mustard stuff without as much as a flinch. Its not just Tokyo which features though as moments later he takes the shinkansen (bullet train) to Kyoto where we see him on JR Kyoto station platform and soon after he and former intelligence colleague Momo are at Kiyomizudera temple (below) where they go and investigate Miko’s death.


Among the wooden placades is a special one which he finds quite quickly and inside it is a letter from the late mother of their child which he reads as he walks through the temple grounds to the main viewing platform (below) which offers spectacular views of the place although it wasn’t so good for us photographers when I was there as the sun was shining too brightly to capture it well.


Back in Tokyo, Wako department store (below left) at 4-5-11 Ginza in Chuo-ku (also seen in ‘Godzilla‘) pops up on screen after 76 mins. I’m reliably told that Harumi Passenger Ship Terminal (below right) was used as a location though I’m not too sure which scenes were filmed there. This is situated across Kachidoki Bridge coming from Tsukiji and if I was to guess I’d say that some of the interior airport shots such as the immigration and bag search scenes were captured there.