In 2012, the legendary Japanese film studio Nikkatsu celebrates its centenary. 13 films from the studio's treasure trove have been carefully selected, and will be presented to the Norwegian audience during the Films From the South Festival from 4. to 14. October 2012. The Nikkatsu retrospective is a cooperation between the festival and the Cinematheque in Oslo and is funded by the Japan Foundation.
– Throughout its long history Nikkatsu has produced many of the film history's great masterpieces. The studio has also been very important in the development of the modern genre film, says director of the Oslo Cinematheque, Jan Langlo. – Nikkatsu’s influence extends far beyond its homeland. It's hard to imagine the films of directors such as Martin Scorsese, Quentin Tarantino and John Woo without the influence from Nikkatsu.
Hundred years of Japanese film history
From historical films of the 1950s to modern urban youth films, gangster films and comedies - Nikkatsu has explored most genres, and has since the beginning in 1912 produced over 3300 films. Today, Nikkatsu’s productions still have a strong standing in the Japanese film industry and culture.
Several of the studio's productions were important for the development of the Japanese New Wave in the 1960's and very original and stylish creative gangster films likeBranded to Kill (Seijun Suzuki, 1967) and A Colt is My Passport (Takashi Nomura, 1967) were made in the same decade.
– We have been working with the Nikkatsu retrospective for a long time and we are very pleased to see it finally being realized, says Lasse Skagen, artistic director of Films From the South. – Movies from the studio’s golden age have drawn people to the cinemas in France the past year, and we are proud to be a part of the European team that now presents these film treasures to a Norwegian audience. This is hardcore Japanese film history, Skagen comments.
The complete program will be published online September 20th.