Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Japan's right-wing backlash against Hayao Miyazaki for The Japan Times

Backlash against Miyazaki is generational

BY ROLAND KELTS
OCT, 2013

If you haven’t lived in Japan, it’s hard to appreciate just how beloved are anime maestro Hayao Miyazaki and his creative hub, Studio Ghibli.

Annual surveys of Japanese consumers often find that Ghibli is their favorite domestic brand, ahead of stalwarts such as Toyota and Sony. Miyazaki’s animated epics regularly top the domestic theatrical market. “Kaze Tachinu” (“The Wind Rises”), his latest film — loosely based on the life of engineer Jiro Horikoshi, designer of Japan’s wartime Zero fighter plane — soared above its box office rivals for seven consecutive weeks after its July release. Meanwhile, his Oscar-winning “Spirited Away” (2001) remains the top-grossing film in Japanese history, knocking aside Hollywood live-action contenders such as “Titanic” and the “Harry Potter” films.

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Meet 281_Anti Nuke, Japan's street artist of dissent, for The New Yorker

AntiNuke-580.jpgThe stickers went up a few months after Japan’s triple disaster in 2011—an earthquake and tsunami that took twenty thousand lives, and an ongoing nuclear crisis that threatens more. They first appeared along the shabby backstreets of Shibuya, in downtown Tokyo, a place that offers some of the very few canvasses for graffiti in a city not given to celebrating street art. The British expat photographer and filmmaker Adrian Storey couldn’t ignore them. “Being a foreigner, there was a sort of brief period after 3/11 when there was this sense of community in Tokyo that I haven’t felt before,” Storey says. “Then it kind of went away, and people just went back to shopping. I was drawn to the stickers because I realized it was a Japanese person behind them, and they actually cared about what was happening. I started photographing every sticker I found.”