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Production Year 2022

Choices: Prenatal Testing and the Life of the Fetus


目撃 にっぽん 「妹が生まれなかったかもしれない世界~出生前診断と向き合って~」 [NHK]

|Length : 30min |Year : 2022

Non-invasive prenatal testing (NIPT) has become widespread in Japan. About 90 percent of people who are diagnosed with a high risk of fetal disabilities like Down syndrome choose to end their pregnancy. I, the director of this program, have a younger sister, Sae, who has Down syndrome. When I asked my mother if she would have been tested, had NIPT been available, she responded, “Given my state of mind then, I would have, and if risk had been detected, Sae might not have been born.”
I interviewed people who have faced these decisions. After a prenatal test that indicates abnormalities, some people chose to end the pregnancy and others gave birth. I discovered realities behind these decisions that I hadn’t imagined. What is needed in society today, and what can each of us contribute? This is a personal documentary centered on dialogue with those who grappled with these issues.

The Sake that Bonds “Unite311” A Sake of Gratitude


絆の一献~恩返しの酒「Unite311」 [KHB]

|Length : 47min |Year : 2022

There is a sake brewery with a long history that was close to being forced to shut down after its facilities were destroyed in the Great Tohoku Earthquake of March 2011. At that time, brewery workers from across Japan rushed in to help them out.

This documentary follows the owner and workers of the brewery that was reborn, as they attempted to create a “special sake” that would express their gratitude to those who lent them a helping hand during that period, 10 years ago. Since that disaster, they have worked to broaden the base of the Japanese sake industry, hiring the nation’s youngest female Head Brewer, as well as a foreign Assistant Head Brewer. To mark this 10th anniversary of the disastrous earthquake, our aim is to relay to you the passion for SAKE of this brewery owner and his workers, as they move forward with heartfelt gratitude for all the support they received at the time, as well as to give you a glimpse of the progress the Tohoku region has made in its recovery.

DO YOU LIKE THE COUNTRYSIDE? -Exploring Fukui Through the Lens of a Camera-


FBCスペシャル2021 #田舎は好きですか ~ファインダー越しの僕のふるさと~ [FBC]

|Length : 48min |Year : 2022

This program follows a 20-year-old young man who continues to take photographs in Fukui with the theme of youth and memories.
“Fukui Prefecture ranks low in terms of attractiveness nationwide, but somehow I felt frustrated and wanted to overturn that,” Yuta Tomosaki (20)said. In order to discover this, he started taking pictures during the self-restraint period of the covid-19 disaster, and took pictures of casual everyday scenery and life such as the local sea, mountains, farming villages, and friends. When he posted it on SNS, the number of followers increased to 80,000 in one year, and it attracted attention, and I realized that each photo was full of local attractions that I had not known until now.In January 2021, he took a picture of the dinosaur monument in the plaza of JR Fukui Station. When he posted it, it was picked up by internet news and became a topic such as “It looks like an ice age”, and it received more than 270,000 “nice!”.
He says, “I still admire the splendor of the city, but recently I've come to appreciate the tranquility of the countryside.” In order to convey the charm of the hometown to young people of the same generation who dream of the city, the posted image is accompanied by the question “# Do you like the countryside?”

Weaving -Memories of the Future


つむぐ~未来の絆~ [CBC]

|Length : 52min |Year : 2022

“Kizunae” are drawings that depict people who have passed away in scenes from their future as if they were still living. Thirty-seven-year-old artist Jun Omura from Aichi Prefecture is a former caricaturist who now creates such kizunae artwork. This documentary follows Mr. Omura for two years as he meets with his clients, who are surviving family members of the deceased, and draws kizunae for them. The artwork introduced includes “a young boy whose dreams were realized,” “a sister who grew up to carry a baby,” “a wedding that never took place,” and even one of “Jun Omura’s family.”

Mr. Omura must overcome the daily anxiety that comes with bridging the gap between the “remnants” of the deceased and the “ideal image” requested by his clients. We have documented the kizunae art that he creates and the states of mind of the surviving families.

SERIES A Passionate Challenger | Breathing life into ink -A rising Calligrapher:Bisen Aoyagi


書道家・アーティスト 青柳美扇 [MBS]

|Length : 25min |Year : 2022

For the opening ceremony of the Emperor’s Cup football game, calligrapher Bisen Aoyagi put on a calligraphy performance for tens of thousands of people on New Year’s Day 2020. This was not her first time performing with a large brush to paint on a giant folding screen; she has carried out this performance to great acclaim in over ten countries. Aoyagi’s calligraphy, which captivates people around the world, is marked by its dynamic power. Her writing dances across the paper as if it has taken on a life of its own. She says a truly great work has an alluring empty space and letters that rise from the paper.
When Aoyagi is not performing, she practices tirelessly in her studio. Our cameras capture her diligent work that goes on behind the scenes of her flashy performances. Although her life revolves around calligraphy, Aoyagi immerses herself in nature once a year to enjoy some fishing or surfing. This respite can sometimes lead to surprising new ideas.
The calligrapher is currently absorbed in preparing for her fifth exhibit. She exclaims it will be something people have never seen before and puts forth a revolutionary idea of expressing three-dimensional objects through calligraphy. In order to make this happen, she visits a small factory and uses a forming press to cut out metal sheets in the shape of her writing. Come witness this up-and-coming artist’s challenge of transforming 2D into 3D.

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