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Virtuoso movie director Nobuhiko Obayashi has created a film that pays homage to Tohoku’s postdisaster recovery in an unusual collaboration with all-girl pop idol group AKB48.

The short feature, lasting around an hour, serves as a promotional video for AKB48’s new single “So long!” that was released Feb. 20. The release date came less than three weeks before the second anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake, which wrecked the Tohoku region and triggered the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

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