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Mark Schilling

For Mark Schilling's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

'Our Meal for Tomorrow': Changing roles in romantic drama

/ Jan 4, 2017

'Our Meal for Tomorrow': Changing roles in romantic drama

Gender-bending comedy certainly exists in Japanese films, though it may not be mainstream. In Yosuke Fujita’s “Fuku-chan of FukuFuku Flats” (“Fukufukuso no Fukuchan,” 2014), popular female TV comedian Miyuki Oshima starred as a male house painter who becomes allergic to the opposite sex after ...

'Tampopo' has blown back to our screens

| Jan 4, 2017

'Tampopo' has blown back to our screens

Released in 1985, Juzo Itami’s “Tampopo” was famously a flop in Japan, but a hit abroad, especially in the United States, where it became the second-highest-earning Japanese film ever. This “noodle Western” about a rough-hewn truck driver (Tsutomu Yamazaki) who helps a spunky widow ...

'14 That Night': Not quite abreast of teenage angst

/ Dec 28, 2016

'14 That Night': Not quite abreast of teenage angst

Japanese films about high schoolers are many; junior high schoolers, few. One reason is that producers can cast a film about 17 year olds with 27-year-old actors who have massive fan followings. The result: bigger box office than if they had used newcomers barely ...

A new wave of Japanese filmmakers matches the old

Dec 21, 2016

A new wave of Japanese filmmakers matches the old

Nearly two decades after the Japanese New Wave of the 1990s, the directors who led it, including Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Hirokazu Koreeda and Naomi Kawase, are still the local industry’s most prominent faces abroad. But this year a new generation of filmmakers has finally started ...

Is Southeast Asia now Japan's competition?

Dec 14, 2016

Is Southeast Asia now Japan's competition?

Japan is an Asian entertainment powerhouse, is it not? This October’s Japan Contents Showcase, which was held in Tokyo’s Odaiba and Shibuya areas, included markets for film and TV (TIFFCOM), animation (TIAF) and music (TIMM), with 356 Japanese companies selling to 1,539 registered buyers, ...

'The Old Capital': Stuck on the inside of tradition

/ Dec 7, 2016

'The Old Capital': Stuck on the inside of tradition

Kyoto would seem to be the most international city in Japan, if the number of foreign tourists were the only criterion. More than a million visit the city annually, giving the 1.5 million locals, especially ones living and working in and near the major ...