The 17th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) selected Japanese filmmaker Koji Wakamatsu as the 2012 ‘Asian Filmmaker of the Year.’
For the past 50 years, Wakamatsu has been the most controversial filmmaker in Japan. He has directed various genres from pink films to extremely political films. His filmography continues as a director as well as a producer who has produced controversial films like In the Realm of the Senses (1976) by Oshima Nagisa, Dutch Wife in the Desert (1965) by Atsushi Yamatoya, and The Red Army/PFLP: Declaration of World War (1971) by Adachi Masao.
This year, despite his age of 76, Wakamatsu completed three masterworks in a row – 11.25 The Day He Chose His Own Fate, Kaien Hotel in Blue,and The Millennial Rapture. The 17th Busan International Film Festival decided to give him the Asian Filmmaker of the Year Award to honor his spirit of independent film as a rebellious auteur and his never-ending passion for cinema.
The ‘Asian Filmmaker of the Year Award’ has been annually presented since the 8th BIFF to an Asian filmmaker who has contributed to the development of Asian culture and the Asian film industry. Past recipients include Iran’s Mohsen Makhmalbaf, Taiwan’s Hou Hsiao Hsien, Hong Kong’s Andy Lau, and Hong Kong’s Tsui Hark.
BIFF 2012 which will be held from October 4-13 will hold special screenings of Wakamatsu’s works produced this year:11.25 The Day He Chose His Own Fate, Kaien Hotel in Blue, and The Millennial Rapture.