Monday, March 24, 2008

Japan Culture + Hyperculture: Genius Party

Not only was I lucky enough to get tickets to the world premiere of Genius Party, a film by Atsuko Fukushima which kicked off a festival of original projects animated by STUDIO 4C, but I also found myself sitting directly behind Shinichiro Watanabe, the MC for the event. The playbill was a virtual who’s who of Anime legends: Shoji Kawamura, Shinji Kimura, Yoji Fukuyama, Hideki Futamura, Masaaki Yuasa, and Shinichiro Watanabe bringing up the rear with an emotional short story titled Baby Blue.

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Each work was a visual odyssey through epic landscapes, nightmarish and beautiful storylines, and touching fantasies. We have only begun to experience the tip of the anime iceberg in the US, and beyond its applications as a form of entertainment, anime presents a powerful emotional vehicle to connect people with ideas in ways regular film could never imagine. I predict that 2008 will be bring increasing interest from brands using this medium to connect with consumers in original and memorable ways.

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Thanks to Event Curator, Taeko Baba, of New York – Tokyo LLC, I was able to access artists and performers that would be virtually impossible to meet in Japan. Taeko - I tip my hat off to you. Be sure to look out for future blog posts as I continue to search out the unusual, the remarkable, and the most interesting Japanese trends and connections on behalf of Street Attack!

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