Latest documentary "Oyster Factory" has been officially invited to Locarno International Film Festival 2015! 最新作『牡蠣工場』がロカルノ国際映画祭へ正式招待されました!

Sunday, September 09, 2007

London ロンドン

 9月5日から8日まで、ロンドンへ赴いた。WHY DEMOCRACY? シリーズのBBCでの立ち上げを記念するイベントに出席するためだ。WHY DEMOCRACY? では、『選挙』を含む10本の長編ドキュメンタリーと22本の短編ドキュメンタリーを世界200カ国で一挙に放映する。
 このいかにも大掛かりな大プロジェクトを発案したのは、BBCの名物プロデューサー、ニック・フレーザーだ。ちょうど1年前に出来立てホヤホヤの『選挙』をNYのIFP Marketで「発見」し、シリーズにねじ込んでくれた人物でもある。ニックは『選挙』をDVDで観たとき「面白くて椅子から転げ落ちた」らしく、僕の携帯にいきなり電話をかけ「世界23カ国で放送しないか」と言ってきた(当時はまだ23カ国の予定だった)。ほとんど面識のない僕に、作品を観ただけでそんなオファーをしてきたことに、この人のもつ強烈な自信と手腕を感じた。感謝もした。そのニックに久々に会えて嬉しかった。彼は山さんのことを親しみを込めてMr. Beanと呼ぶのだが、山さんの近況を僕が報告すると目を細めて喜んでくれた。
 監督は僕の他にデンマークのカーステン・カエールとNYのアレックス・ギブニーが来ていた。二人とも超ベテランのドキュメンタリストだが、特にアレックスの「エンロン 巨大企業はなぜ崩壊したのか」は日本でも公開されたし、米アカデミー賞にもノミネートされたからご存じの方もいるだろう。

(写真 上:ニックと 下:アレックスと)

I visited London from September 5th until 8th in order to attend the launch event of WHY DEMOCRACY? series on BBC. 38 broadcasters in 200 countries will air this WHY DEMOCRACY? series which consist of 10 feature documentaries (including my CAMPAIGN) and 22 shorts.

The idea of this huge media event came from BBC's legendary producer Nick Fraser who also "discovered" my newly completed CAMPAIGN at IFP Market in New York about a year ago. I remember I suddenly received a phone call from Nick about 2 weeks after the market. He said he wanted to show CAMPAIGN in 23 countries (it was ONLY 23 countries, back then). He also told me that he laughed so hard that he fell out of the chair when he saw CAMPAIGN on DVD screener for the first time. I was quite astonished and thankful that he was offering such a huge deal to me without knowing me personally. I also thought that he must be incredibly self-confident and powerful if he could decide such a thing only by watching my movie. So, to see him again in London was such a pleasure. He thinks Yama-san is like Mr. Bean, and seemed to enjoy hearing from me about what's happening to Yama-san these days.

I met other directors in the series, too. They were Karsten Kjaer from Denmark and Alex Gibney from New York. Alex is very well-known especially for his oscar nominated ENRON: SMARTEST GUYS IN THE ROOM. While chatting with him, I was surprised that he knew so much about Japan, and even more surprised that he once interviewed Beate Sirota Gordon who wrote women's rights article in the draft of Japanese constitution right after the WWII. I once made a documentary on Beate, too, so we talked a lot about her and about Japanese constitution. I never dreamed that I would talk about Beate with Alex. And he was so knowledgeable, intelligent, and funny!

(Pictures - Up: Nick and me. Bottom: Alex and me)

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