Japanese Film Festivals withdrawal of the documentary of comfort women

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 Japanese Film Festivals withdrawal of the documentary of comfort women


Poster of documentary main battlefield.

At present, the most important event in the Japanese film industry is undoubtedly the 32nd Tokyo International Film Festival, but the shocking news is the 25th Kawasaki new lily Film Festival in Kawasaki City, Kanagawa Prefecture, which is not far from Tokyo: just before the opening of the film festival on October 27, an exhibition film involving the issue of comfort women was temporarily withdrawn.

The film whose screening right has been cancelled is the documentary the main battlefield directed by Miki dezaki, a Japanese American film director. The film focuses on the issue of Japanese comfort women in the Second World War, visiting many parties and relevant experts in Korea and Japan. At the same time, the director also interviewed some Japanese right-wing people who still insist that there is no so-called comfort women problem. Several of them initiated lawsuits against the films director earlier, which directly led to the cancellation of the film now.

The interviewees allege that the director lied to them that the film was only his own graduation work and would not be released commercially in the future, so he would speak freely and express his mind in front of the camera. But on the other hand, the director himself is not worried about the lawsuit, because after those interviews, he has received the written authorization of the interviewees according to the Convention, so he is full of confidence.

Nevertheless, for various reasons, the Kawasaki municipal government issued a warning to the festival, asking the organizing committee to cancel the film exhibition, so as not to cause trouble, or even become the defendant.

Kawasaki new lily Film Festival is jointly organized by the Kawasaki municipal government and the Japanese University of projection near Kawasaki new lily hill station. It is semi official in nature. The Kawasaki municipal government allocates funds for the festival every year, for example, this year it has provided 6 million yen (about 400000 yuan) of subsidies for the festival. It is against this background that the Organizing Committee of the film festival had to cancel the screening of main battlefield at the order of Kawasaki municipal government. In fact, after its global premiere at the Busan Film Festival in South Korea last October, the film has also performed small-scale screening activities in some cinemas around Japan, and the process has been quite smooth. Therefore, this time, the Kawasaki new lily Film Festivals withdrawal from the show attracted more public uproar.

This film festival uses a large number of volunteer services. We have to take their personal safety into account as well as the operational risks of the festival itself, so we make this decision. In addition, the fund of this film festival comes from the taxpayer. In judging the situation, it is naturally different from the private cinema. Zhongshan Zhouzhi, an official spokesman for the festival and a guest lecturer at the Japanese University of projection and painting, said in an interview with Kyodo.

Joson film company issued a statement protesting the practice of the festival.

After the announcement of the withdrawal decision, rossoon Film Co., which also participated in this film festival, immediately announced that the two films we cant stop and the day of 11.25 self determination which were originally planned to be shown in this film festival would immediately withdraw from the exhibition to protest this practice of murdering freedom of speech. Josong film company was founded by the late Japanese famous left-wing director Yoshio Matsumoto, and both films were starred by the movie star Inoue, who was supposed to make a special screening in the actor: the new track of Inoue exhibition unit of this Kawasaki new lily Film Festival. Today, the film company announced that on November 1 and 4, it will borrow the Masheng district public hall of Kawasaki City to show 11.25 self determination day for free.

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On October 29, the new lily Film Festival was scheduled to show another film, next stop, heaven, starring Jingpu. The director of the film, Shi zhiyuhe, was also invited to come on stage to communicate with the audience before the show. In his speech, he also relentlessly criticized the wrong way of the festival organizers, saying it was disrespectful to the creators. He said that the organizers claimed that the reason for doing this was to consider the personal safety of volunteers, but the volunteers themselves did not express such concerns, so in my opinion, this consideration of the organizers actually marks the death of this film festival, and if it goes on like this, there will be no filmmakers willing to come back to this film festival. At last, he reminded the audience that when they watch the film, they become part of the festival, so he hoped that they could ponder over it, realize that the festival is facing a serious crisis, and if they want to keep it alive, they should stand up and speak up. He also gave an example of the documentary secret of the world Vietnam Diving Bell at Busan Film Festival five years ago. At that time, Busan municipal government threatened to cut off the funds for the film festival, but the organizers resisted the pressure and finally gained the support and respect of filmmakers all over the world, while the practice of Kawasaki new lily Film Festival just ran counter to Busan Film Festival.

This incident also reflects the increasingly fierce dispute between Japan and South Korea on issues including comfort women and war compensation. Moreover, the conflict has already transcended the political scope and spread to other fields, and cultural exchanges are naturally unable to do their own good. At the fourth Aichi triennial International Art Festival held in Nagoya in August this year, many staff members were dismayed by the threat of Japanese right-wing people and a piece of comfort women sculpture from the hands of Korean artists. This is what the organizers of the new Baihe Film Festival said about security concerns. Finally, under the threat of Nagoyas mayor, the festival closed three days after its opening. Although it was reopened three days later, the exhibition, which is called non free expression and its follow-up and focuses on freedom of artistic creation and expression, has been covered with a stain that can hardly be erased. At the moment, there are only a few Korean films in the Tokyo International Film Festival. Similarly, in the Busan International Film Festival held in early October, although there are a few independent Japanese films, the scale and influence of the festival are incomparable with that of the past.

Source: surging news editor: Ma Wenjing, nbjs9027