Atsushi Wada on „Bird in the Peninsula“ / interview

The Japanese film director was born in Hyōgo in 1980. After studying at the Osaka Kyoiku University, the Japan Institute of the Moving Image and the Tokyo University of the Arts, he started making short animated films in 2002. He is inspired by the minimalism and music of Nô theatre. His short film „In a Pig’s Eye“ won awards at the Fantoche festival in Switzerland and at the London International Animation Festival. In the same year, his film „The Mechanism of Spring“ premiered at Venice. In 2012,“The Great Rabbit“ won a Silver Bear at Berlinale Shorts.

What was your starting point for “Bird in the peninsula”?

It all started about 10 years ago when I saw a documentary film. It showed a scene of a traditional ritual practice by children in a village in Japan in older time, and I was really impressed to see the children didn’t seem to be enjoying the practice so much, so I started thinking about making a story about the ritual.

Do you have a favorite moment in the film? Which one and why this one?

My favorite scenes are when the main character, a boy, strokes the fur on the bird’s neck with his hand, and when the boy peels a tangerine for the dog. The reason is that both of these are movements I wanted to draw, regardless of the story.

What do you like about the short form?

I believe that short films, because of their short length, are a form in which the director’s thoughts and ideas can be embodied more freshly. I get a great impact and stimulation from such works with fresh moments. Because of this, I love such short stories. 

Photo © Atsushi Wada

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Quel a été le point de départ de Bird in the Peninsula ?
Tout a commencé il y a dix ans lorsque j’ai vu un documentaire. Dans ce film, il y avait une scène montrant un rituel traditionnel pratiqué autrefois par des enfants dans un village au Japon. J’ai été très impressionné par la vision de ces enfants à qui ce rituel n’avait pas l’air de plaire. C’est cela qui a servi de point de départ à mon histoire.
an interview with Atsushi Wada by Nicolas Bardot for Le Polyester

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