Screening Program

Award-winning Program 2017

This program comprises 8 highly distinctive works from award-winning works of the Animation, Entertainment, and Art Division from the Japan Media Arts Festival 2017.


‶Alter" Production Team (ISHIGURO Hiroshi / IKEGAMI Takashi, Representatives) (Japan)

Excellence Award 2 min. 10 sec.
Media performance

“Alter” is a robot endowed with “lifelike” attributes through not only its external appearance but also the complexity of its movements. It has a body composed of 42 pneumatic actuators and a face of indeterminate age and gender that “could be anyone’s.” Motion is controlled by a periodic signal generator modeled after the central pattern generators (CPG) in the spinal cord that control walking and other rhythmic movements, a neural network modeled after the neural circuitry of the human brain, and sensors placed around the robot. Actions generated by Alter’s CPG and neural network respond to data from brightness and distance sensors that monitor the robot’s surroundings, producing smooth and realistically chaotic movements. This is a work that poses the question, “Why does a machine that differs from living organisms in both its mechanisms and purpose of existence seem more lifelike at times than some organisms?”


TSUTSUMI Daisuke / Robert KONDO (Japan)

New Face Award13 min. 52 sec.
Animated short film

In this full-3D computer-graphic animation of the 2014 picture book (Hakusensha) of the same title by KAWAMURA Genki and MASHIKO Yuuki, the theme is the accumulation and loss of memories in people and the things they discard. The setting is a peculiar world where memories live on as animate entities in forgotten objects. Moom, the protagonist, lives by a lake with his buddy Kennedy, who wears a spacesuit. Together they extract memories from discarded junk and release them into the air. Finely detailed imagery and tranquil music add to the poignancy of the meetings and partings of these adorable characters against a backdrop of verdant natural scenery.

I Have Dreamed Of You So Much

Emma VAKARELOVA (Bulgaria)

New Face Award3 min.
Animated short film

A short animation about the unrequitable love of the horizon for a girl floating in a little boat on the sea. The girl sails across the endless expanse of ocean, never reaching the horizon on the other side. The horizon longs to touch her, but he cannot. Based on the 1926 poem by Robert Desnos, “J’ai tant rêvé de toi” (I have dreamed of you so much), the work skillfully blends vividly hued, painting-like imagery with a gentle narration of the poem to tell a romantic tale of love, with the sharply delineated brushwork evoking the heartbreak of the horizon yearning for his unreachable beloved.

okazakitaiiku ‶MUSIC VIDEO"

okazakitaiiku / Sushi-kun (Japan)

New Face Award4 min. 27 sec.
Music video

A music video of “MUSIC VIDEO,” the major-label debut album by solo artist okazakitaiiku. The lyrics are a rundown of music video cliches— “Sing while walking and staring into the camera,” “Band members suddenly pop up from either side,” and so on—which the artist himself reproduces, trope for trope, in the video. The three-person production staff, consisting of okazakitaiiku, took about 100 hours to shoot the work at a cost of 60,000 yen. It has enjoyed a strong response on social networking services.

A Love Story

Anushka Kishani NAANAYAKKARA (United Kingdom)

Excellence Award 7min.
Animated short film

This stop-motion animation tells the story of two characters who fall in love and must overcome a darkness that slowly overtakes their flawless world. lthough the tale delves into the struggles of a relationship, the undercurrent of tenderness between the protagonists permeates the work and leaves a lasting impression. The creators’ choice to use wool yarn as their principal material allows them to meticulously depict emotional depth of the characters. A variety of experimental techniques, such as filming puppets against a background that employs a seven-layered glass multiplane with various materials inserted on each plane, are put to good use in skillfully transitioning from scene to scene.

your name.(Trailer)

SHINKAI Makoto (Japan)

Grand Prize1min. 32sec.
Animated feature film

MIYAMIZU Mitsuha, a high-school girl in a small town deep in the mountains, one day dreams that she is a high-school boy in Tokyo. Meanwhile, a Tokyo high-school boy named TACHIBANA Taki dreams that he has become a high-school girl in a mountain town. Through these strange recurring dreams and fragmented experiences of memory and time, Mitsuha and Taki come to realize that they are switching places in their dreams. Unfolding against the backdrop of a once-in-a-millennium visitation by a comet, this is a tale of two teenagers seeking love and miracles as they get to know one another. A drama of distance born of both gaps and links between two people from different worlds plays out on a grand scale with stunningly beautiful graphics.


ANNO Hideaki / HIGUCHI Shinji (Japan)

Grand Prize1min. 30sec.
Video work

The first new production in 12 years from the Godzilla franchise of specialeffects movies, this is an ensemble performance in which bureaucrats and politicians face down the mythical monster as it invades Japan once more. Its faithful portrayal of actual social conditions gives a documentary feel to a realistic disaster simulation that addresses the question, “How would the Japanese respond if Godzilla appeared in Japan today?” This approach, which deviates from the kid- or family-friendly style of past installments, appeals to an audience segment less interested in special effects or monster flicks. This is the first domestically produced Godzilla to consist entirely of computer graphics, and at 118.5 meters it is also the biggest in the history of the series. Viewers found themselves riveted by the sight of the behemoth careening through Tokyo, destroying buildings at whim.


YOSHIHARA Yukihiro (Japan)

Excellence Award17min. 40sec.
Video installation

In this vertically oriented video installation a hi-vision projector shows edited footage, shot with a 4K single-reflex camera, of scenes of high voltage ransmission cables between central Tokyo and the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant in Niigata Prefecture. During a twoand-a-half year period from 2012 to 2015, the artist made frequent trips to film dams in the mountains between the two regions and towns and villages along Japan’s longest river, the Shinano. Niigata is one of Japan’s leading rice producers. The mutual dependence of Tokyo and Niigata grew increasingly pronounced during Japan’s era of rapid economic growth. This work highlights the excessively asymmetrical relationship between the capital and outlying regions as symbolized by high voltage cables, posing questions for residents of the voracious electricity consumer that is Tokyo as well as for the artist himself, a native of Niigata Prefecture who lived for some years in Tokyo.