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Japan rang in 2020 with dreams of Olympic glory. Not so much the athletic kind, though there was that too, but more in terms of branding. It was a chance to reaffirm the country’s position as a player on the global pop culture stage.

Looking at the mainstream successes won by South Korea — pop group BTS, the film “Parasite” — surely there would be room for another player from Asia on the global pop culture stage.

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