|New Year’s Greetings
The new year has begun, but it’s started off with heartbreaking news.
We would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the victims, their families, and all those affected by the earthquake centered in the Noto region. We can only imagine their sorrow in suddenly losing family and friends, and the difficulties of enduring life in evacuation centers while aftershocks continue and anxieties for the future mount. We hope that a life in safety with a peace of mind will arrive as soon as possible.
Last year, we managed to pull off the first physical festival in four years, thanks to the cooperation we received from so many partners. With an attendance of over 20,000 visitors, we were able to successfully conclude the event. Thank you so very much.
There will be no Yamagata Film Festival in 2024, but we’ll be busy in preparation for YIDFF 2025 as well as locally organizing film screenings and workshops. We hope that these events will be a destination for people not only here in Yamagata, but also for visitors from afar who can combine the trip with a tourist’s holiday.
The Noto earthquake in Japan is just one of many causes for heartache across the world. Civilian casualties continue to rise in Gaza as Israel’s aggression on Hamas persists and the war between Russia and Ukraine sees no end. As our documentaries about Palestine continue to show in Tokyo this month, we promise not to avert our eyes from the people who live there and their bloodshed. We shall continue to seek out what we can do to help them.