Special Feature: Pathways to Directing Commercial Films

Dare To Stop Us

7.18 (Thu) 17:30 Convention Hall

©2018 若松プロダクション

Director: Kazuya SHIRAISHI
Cast: Mugi KADOWAKI, Arata IURA
Distributor: Wakamatsu Production,Skhole

2018 / Japan / 119min.


In 1969, Wakamatsu Production was based in the Harajuku Central Apartment building. Film director and founder Koji Wakamatsu, 33, had captured the imagination of the younger generation with his groundbreaking pink films. Told from the perspective of Megumi Yoshizumi, who went to Wakamatsu Production when she was 21 seeking to work as an assistant director, this film with its young ensemble cast portrays the fleeting moment when everything—cinema, youth, and love—hung in a dazzling but precarious balance for the inhabitants of Wakamatsu’s world. The brilliant Kazuya Shiraishi, now a leading figure in Japanese cinema, depicts the youthful days of his mentor Koji Wakamatsu, who remained doggedly relevant in his early work. Wakamatsu, who passed away in 2018, used film as a weapon—director Shiraishi planned this project as a way of making his voice heard once again. This film is notable for marking the first step in the resumption of creative activity at Wakamatsu Production. Mugi Kadowaki gives a passionate performance in the lead role as Megumi Yoshizumi. Arata Iura, a regular in Wakamatsu films, plays Wakamatsu himself. 

監督: Kazuya SHIRAISHI

Director: Kazuya SHIRAISHI

Born in 1974, Hokkaido. In 2013, his film The Devil’s Path picked up an array of awards, including the Gold Prize at the Shindo Kaneto Awards. In 2018, he won the Blue Ribbon Award for Best Director, as well as the Nikkan Sports Film Award for Best Director, for The Blood of Wolves and other films. The following year saw continued success, as A Gambler’s Odyssey 2020, Sea of Revival, and One Night earned him the Kinema Junpo Award for Best Director, and the Minister of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology’s Art Encouragement Prize for New Artists. After Lesson in Murder (22) and the streaming series Kamen Rider Black Sun (22), Shiraishi then made his first film on which he acted as producer, The Dry Spell (23). He released BUSHIDO in 2024. Shiraishi has a series scheduled for release on Netflix, The Queen of Villains; as well as a new film, Juichi nin no zokugun