On April 17th, Another World, a Japanese film directed by Junji Sakamoto and shortlisted in the Competition Section - Tiantan Award of the 9th Beijing International Film Festival, held a press conference at Beijing Hotel•Nuo. As the director and screenwriter for the film, Mr. Junji Sakamoto attended the conference.
Koh Takamura makes high-grade charcoals at a charcoal kiln inherited from his father. He is indifferent to his wife and son. One day, Koh's old friend, Eisuke Okiyama, comes back to his hometown. Eisuke is a former self-defense official. After Hiroshi learns about Eisuke's past, he decides to take his job and family more seriously.
Each person has unique feelings for his hometown no matter what he is like. In his hometown, he has family members and friends sharing friendships, love and family affections. In the film Another World, three childhood playmates, from the same small place, become different persons in diversified environments. One leaves his hometown, one inherits his family property, and one faces various family trivial things. According to the director, he started considering introducing new changes for the unchanged life of the place when describing a story taking place at this small place. However, such changes in the film are the homecoming of the former self-defense official’s playmate with psychological trauma.
Although the charcoal worker works hard, he is always one step further from success. His homecoming friend toils himself due to excessive nervousness. The salesman of second-hand cars is a stickybeak, being disliked and hated by many people. At the early stage of creating the script, Junji Sakamoto wanted to separate the three different roles completely. However, some personality traits of the director were unconsciously integrated into these roles. The director’s personal experiences and those from his friends were used as materials for the film.
The reason setting the leading role as a nobody making charcoals in a small place is that there are few works describing unknown manufacturing workers among existing Japanese films. Therefore, the director wanted to tell a story of such workers by focusing on those unknown people making charcoals in mountains.
These is an extremely touching scene about three persons at the seaside. When talking about the source of inspiration for the scene, Junji Sakamoto said that the inspiration is based on his personal experience, and most young boys have such experience, such as drinking, smoking, or doing some bad deeds at the seaside by keeping these things from their parents. Some works may describe the identity and personality traits of roles by means of flashback to make young actors express their scenes during middle school, while the friendship of these figures is demonstrated by describing the images of their middle age life. At the seaside, the three men talk and laugh, with blankets on them, expressing the way they get along with one another during their youth.
As a great number of Japanese films and TV plays have been hitting China’s film market in recent years, Junji Sakamoto plans to cooperate with Chinese filmmakers as well. When cooperating with the teams from various countries, translation was definitely needed because of communication barriers. However, such cooperation provided fresh feelings for him as well due to diverse cultural backgrounds and benefited him a lot. He hopes that he can have a chance to make a film in China alone for cooperation and exchanges with Chinese filmmakers.