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Naomi Kawase boards two short film initiatives

Cannes competition director Naomi Kawase has announced the launch of a short film omnibus project dedicated to the victims and survivors of the disaster-afflicted Tohoku region of Japan.

Entitled 3.11 A Sense Of Home Films Project, as a commemoration of the date the earthquake and tsunami struck eastern Japan, the production will commission both renowned and young directors to create short films of 3 minutes and 11 seconds in length which will be edited into a feature film omnibus. Kawase, who is currently competing for the Palme d’Or with Hanezu, will oversee the project.

Cannes 2010 Palme d’Or winner Apichatpong Weerasethakul, China’s Jia Zhangke – in Cannes last year with I Wish I Knew, and Japanese actress and director Kaori Momoi are already confirmed to contribute work along with approximately eight other directors yet to be announced. Rounding out the contributors will be nine filmmakers fostered at the Nara international film festival’s young director programme.

The omnibus will be screened on September 11 at a temple in Kawase’s hometown of Nara, followed by engagements at Yamagata international documentary film festival, the Sendai short film festival in Miyagi prefecture and other screenings around Tohoku.

Kawase will also be a contributor to a second short film omnibus entitled 60 Seconds Of Solitude In Year Zero. In cooperation with the Tallinn Black Nights film festival, the omnibus is being produced to celebrate the European Capital of Culture event in Tallinn, Estonia this August.

The film will be screened outdoors on Tallinn Bay only once and burned as it’s projected. “Flying in the face of the cynicism of marketing, producers, business operators and the moral majority,” as stated on the project’s official website.

In addition to winning the Grand Prix in Cannes for 2007’s The Mourning Forest, Kawase also picked up the Netpac jury award at Tallinn in December that year. 

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