View People View Cities
—The World of UNESCO Creative Cities

Co-organized by Yamagata City and Yamagata Creative City Promotion Council

Qingdao (CHINA) Valladolid (SPAIN) Rome (ITALY) Yamagata (JAPAN), Bradford (UK)
Yamagata Renaissance Project

Something Indispensable to Film

Neighborhoods and people.

I never doubted this would be the theme to this film program. When I looked at the UNESCO Creative Cities Network list of the twenty City of Film member cities, some were familiar to me, while others I was encountering for the first time. I found myself wondering what kinds of cities (=neighborhoods) these were, and wanting to see them all and visit them. And then, as if partner to this thought, I wished to meet the people living there.

It might sound a bit pretentious until you realize a lot of films actually do this to us. To suggest two obvious examples, who doesn’t hunger to go to New York or Hong Kong upon watching a Woody Allen or Wong Kar-Wai film?

I myself have put a strong emphasis on portraying people in the films I make. Portraying neighborhoods has also been imperative, because a filmmaker’s way of perceiving society (community) is unavoidably revealed when they examine their relationship to the places in which they were born and raised, or have lived.

In other words, while fixing one’s gaze on neighborhoods and people may at first seem unremarkable, it is in fact a classic approach, organic to film, in which the thinking process and nature of the filmmaker may be explored.

Nakamura Takayuki
Filmmaker, Program Coordinator