||6th – 13th September, 1991
||Taiyo, Toei Palace, Solaria Cinema 2
|EXHIBITION OF :
||23 films from 10 nations and regions
||Song of the Exile(1990/Hong Kong/Taiwan)
This was the first year for the Focus on Asia Fukuoka International Film Festival, a film festival that features only Asian films. The first year of our film festival featured 8 films from the late Indian film director, G. Aravindan who passed away in March, 1991. Of the 8 films, one was specially made to appeal to children. The retrospective exhibition was joined by its distinguished guests including the son of the late G. Aravindan, and Shaji N. Karun, a director of photography. A unique feature of holding Q&A sessions after film screenings, began with our first festival.
As the opening film, Song of the Exile, an autobiographical film by Ann Hui, was shot in Yufuin, Kyushu, a number of the production staff involved in the shooting were also invited up on stage to be greeted. At the Q&A session of The Last Princess of Manchuria(Kawashima Yoshiko), a member of the audience recalled meeting the real Yoshiko Kawashima in the past. Such events turned out to once again prove the long and close relationship between Asia and Kyushu.
The 13 films shown in the “Excellent Films of Asia” section of the festival, unintentionally turned out to be a collection of motion pictures dealing with the separation of family and the loss of one`s hometown. Problems facing Asia today were explicitly depicted in such films as Gilsodom, Banana Paradise, The Immigrants and The Cyclist. At the same time, these films demonstrated what cinema could do for our society. From the Democratic People°s Republic of Korea came an academic film, The Land of the Equestrian People, Vol.3:Kogury. The director of the film and Im Kwon-Taek, a film director from the Republic of Korea, hugged each other at a party sponsored by the film festival. Such was the type of exchange witnessed between people in the film industry at our festival. 3 films were introduced in the “Films for Children” section of our festival. Among them was My Sky, My Home which later was screened at the Iwanami Hall in Tokyo. These films did not have Japanese subtitles. Instead, actors and actresses from a local theatrical company recited the dialog in Japanese to the audience.
The festival held a symposium entitled “Do People in the Asian Film Industry Really Understand Asian Films?” At the symposium, film directors, film critics and others in the film industry from 10 Asian countries and regions, held a heated discussion covering such subjects as the role of cinema in Asian culture, difficulties encountered in filmmaking, and trends making the viewing of films from neighboring countries difficult. At a talk session held under the theme of “Asian Culture Depicted in Film”, a Indian film director Sai Paranjpye proposed that Fukuoka establish a library of Asian films, a suggestion that led to the future establishment of the Fukuoka City Public Library Film Archive.