The ceremony took place on Nov 5 in Washington DC in recognition of Yoda’s “outstanding contribution to the Japanese filmmaking industry.”

Yoda was appointed chairman of the Tokyo International Film Festival in March 2008. MPAA Chairman and CEO Senator Chris Dodd and Japanese Ambassador to the US Ichiro Fujisaki were present at the ceremony.

The MPAA hosted a screening of Postcard (Ichimai No Hagaki) to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF).

“The United States and Japan have a growing and shared stake in the global marketplace for film and other creative works,” said MPAA chief Senator Chris Dodd.

“Both of our countries appreciate not only the cultural contributions of movies, but also the extraordinary and growing economic opportunities they generate. And it is through events like TIFF that bring our communities and film lovers together to celebrate the joy of filmmaking.

“Over the years the festival has been the perfect platform for us to be part of the Japanese industry, sharing our mission and challenges with filmmakers and government, seeking a joint role to promote and protect the global screen community. Tom’s five years as chairman of TIFF has strengthened the bonds between MPA and the Japanese community”.

“I’d like to thank MPAA for conferring upon me this special award,” said Yoda. “It has always been my endeavour to project the best of the Japanese film industry to the rest of the world, and our collaboration with MPAA further strengthens ties between both our film communities, as well as enhances the creative synergies between Japan and the US toward promoting world cinema. TIFF is one such positive step in this direction and I’m certain that it will take it further.”

Dodd praised the recent release of a report illustrating the significant economic contribution made by the screen community in Japan. The Economic Contribution Of The Film And Television Industries In Japan found that the industries contributed $145.9bn to the country’s GDP and supported 264,707 jobs in 2011.