Book tackles atom bomb horror, author eyes 3D film

Fri Jan 22, 2010 9:18am EST
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By Mike Collett-White

LONDON (Reuters) - A new book follows a handful of Japanese who were lucky -- or unlucky -- enough to survive both the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bombings, and their shocking story could make it to the big screen in 3-D, its author said. Charles Pellegrino's "The Last Train From Hiroshima: The Survivors Look Back," is the result of lengthy research, including extensive interviews with the survivors and those who dropped the weapons toward the end of World War Two.

He and "Avatar" director James Cameron met one such person, Tsutomu Yamaguchi, not long before he died earlier this month aged 93, and Pellegrino believes it is their duty to commit his story to film.

"Mr. Yamaguchi called us to him, literally to hold hands with him and gave us each this assignment (of making the movie)," Pellegrino said in a telephone interview.

"We have to figure out how to go forward with this project. With Mr. Yamaguchi dead it's our destiny to."

The 56-year-old author envisages a movie which combines full-color, 2-D footage of interviews with survivors with 3-D, sepia-toned reconstructions of the events they describe.

"We must communicate this to the world and stop this ever happening a third time," he said, adding that he was concerned that people in the United States had developed "amnesia" about the threat of nuclear weapons since the end of the Cold War.

"People seem surprised to hear that two cities were hit by atomic bombs. The amnesia has got to such a point that I hear people around me in the U.S., even in my own family, using phrases like "nuke them."