The Documentary Dream Show has gotten a taste of reality — reality television to be more precise.

This year’s film festival, which screens Japanese and overseas documentaries, launched a popular vote campaign to choose an old film from the Yamagata Documentary Film Library to get a special screening. In a manner similar to how voters choose winners on the TV program “American Idol,” Robert Kramer’s 1989 film “Route One” was voted to the top spot.

Kramer’s work joins a crowded field of documentaries — around 100 — that will be shown at two cinemas in Tokyo from Aug. 18 till Sept. 21. The festival takes place in Yamagata every other year and on the off years it comes to Tokyo.

Last year’s winning film, “The Collaborator and His Family,” will be shown at the festival on Aug. 18 at 6:10 p.m. and director Ruthie Shatz will be coming to Japan to take part in a discussion session following the screening. The film follows a man who worked for the Israeli government in Palestine for years. He was then forced to leave the Palestinian territories and relocate to Tel Aviv where he received a raw deal from the authorities.

Shatz will also be on hand to participate in a discussion following the screening of another one of her films, “Garden,” being shown Aug. 17.

Also attending the festival will be Indonesian filmmaker Daniel Rudi Haryanto who will participate in a discussion session after the screening of his terrorism-themed “Prison and Paradise” on Sept. 9.

Most of the films will be screened with English subtitles.

Documentary Dream Show: Yamagata in Tokyo 2012 takes place at Auditorium Shibuya in Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, from Aug. 18-31 ([03] 6809-0538; a ticket for one show costs ¥1,400, a three-show pass costs ¥3,600 and a pass to all films costs ¥15,000); and Pole Pole in Nakano-ku, Tokyo, from Sept. 1-21 ([03] 3371-0088; a five-show pass costs ¥6,000 and a 10-show pass costs ¥10,000). Start times vary. For more information, visit www.cinematrix.jp.

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