CGFilms 001- Sakurazaka

As a filmmaker, I’m very concerned with the state of film distribution in movie theaters as we have known this until now. Many people wonder if Independent Cinema will survive in the coming years, how it will find its way to the audience and under what format. Obviously, VOD and the Home Cinema are changing the picture.

I thought it might be of interest, as we travel in forty-seven different Prefectures in Japan, to introduce some of the movie theaters of the country. Beginning with the Sakurazaka in Naha was a logical starting point, since Okinawa is where we begin our trip, but also because this theater played an important role in convincing us to jump into that trip operation around Japan.

And as a curiosity, I post this material shot on the Flip about the Premiere of “Looking For Anne” at the Sakurazaka in November 2009. It gives another idea of the mood in the Sakurazaka…

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First Blog Entry: The Trip around Japan

This is my first blog ever. I feel kind of weird but also very excited. I’m a filmmaker, not a blogger. Somehow, I find it intimidating to tell the truth. It all feels a bit awkward right now, but I hope to get the hang of it after a few posts and some feedback… Some friends suggested that I start a blog a while back, but I felt that I needed to start with something special, an event that would be worth sharing with everybody.

I found my “pretext” for the blog two months ago: a trip around Japan in a funny looking, tiny and ecological car, visiting movie theaters and what have you in all of the 47 Prefectures. I will travel with one of the producers of our last feature film “Looking For Anne”, Yuri Yoshimura, who also happens to be my wife and the co-writer of the film… The director of “Looking For Anne”, Takako Miyahira, who used to be my assistant on several films before co-writing and directing her first movie, will also join us. We will engage on a journey of fun and discovery of an exceptional country.

I can’t really promise anything yet about what shape the trip, the blog and the videos will take. All we know at this point is that it will be at least 7,000 kilos, crisscrossing from one place to the next on a pretty crazy schedule: at least three hours of driving everyday, meeting several local media, some movie theater owners or managers, shooting some fun material of people, places, before editing, uploading, etc. Ideally, I will be writing and posting pictures everyday, and a short video as well. Eventually, I might have a French blog as well, if time allows. Yuri and Takako will take care of the Japanese blog about the movie, “Anne o Sagashite” that has already been going on for quite some time.

We are scheduled to depart by ferry from Naha, Okinawa on the 21st of April. We will head for our first city, Kagoshima where we will arrive on the 22nd. In the coming post, I will try to give more information about the whole operation.

It should be a lot of fun…

p.s. This text was written around the April 18, 2010

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