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Memoirs of a Geisha debuted Tuesday in Tokyo to mixed reactions fueled by concerns of cultural authenticity.
The film is rife with international credentials, but that global touch has many concerned. The fear is that it might not play well in Japan because the movie's three lead roles are played by Chinese women - Ziyi Zhang, Gong Li and Michelle Yeoh, an ethnic Chinese Malaysian. And don't expect it to be a hit in China, either. The Chinese, still bitter over the Japanese occupation from 1931 to 1945, bristle at the idea of Chinese women playing geishas.
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