Believe it or not, one of the most prolific filmmaking countries of the world is Japan.
It is, in fact, substantiated with facts and figures by Ben Suzuki, the Director of Japan Foundation. “Japan has produced 500 films last year,” Suzuki said during the presscon for the 2023 Japan Film Festival at the Red Carpet Theater lobby of the Shangri-la Plaza.
Japan as a productive film nation, COVID-19 pandemic or not, was affirmed by no less than Filipino movie producer Anon Ozaeta. “Japan is a very committed country to filmmaking. Japanese filmmakers are dedicated and supportive of each other. Even during the height of the pandemic, Japan was doing a lot of films,” quipped Ozaeta.
What then is the secret of the Japanese film art and business? “It’s the sustainability of our manga comics turned to films and the independent film productions that have given life to the Japanese film industry although I’m not from the industry,” informed Suzuki.
It is Japan’s healthy and world-class film industry that has been pumping in the best releases during the annual JFF which comes back on-site after two-year online editions.
Among the newest Japanese movies to hit the JFF screens as its opening film is the animation “Belle”—a story of a high school girl Suzu who has lost the ability to sing when her mother died in an accident when she was young—directed by Hosoda Mamoru.
The JFF kicks off on January 20, 2023 at the Red Carpet.