In the light of recent events many cinemas, festivals as well as the majority of cultural events have been postponed or cancelled altogether. The team behind the highly popular Nippon Connection, which celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2020, has come to a very different decision that will hopefully please fans and admirers of Japanese cinema:

Due to the currently developing spread of the novel coronavirus, the team of the Nippon Connection association has made the unusual, but necessary decision to not hold the 20th Japanese Film Festival Nippon Connection in Frankfurt am Main in its usual form. The safety of the visitors, guests, personnel and volunteers of the Nippon Connection Film Festival is our top priority.

Marion Klomfass, festival director: “To cancel the festival was not an option for us. Thus, after intense exchanges with our sponsors and cooperation partners, we have decided to hold Nippon Connection’s 20th anniversary in an online edition from June 9 – 14, 2020. We hope to make the best of a difficult situation and are looking forward to new challenges.”

Nippon Connection Online

The team is currently hard at work on a new concept. Under the title Nippon Connection Online a diverse selection of current Japanese short and feature length films is to be presented, accompanied by interactive offerings such as live streams and panel discussions with filmmakers.

Florian Höhr, film program director: “Despite the current crisis, giving Japanese cinema and its creators a public platform here in Germany is a great concern to Nippon Connection. Taking the festival online will continue to allow us to give our audience a varied view into the contemporary landscape of Japanese cinema.”

While the virus continues to restrict our lives further, Nippon Connection Online will allow us to maintain existing connections to Japan and even create new ways of access. A supporting digital program of online workshops, presentations, performances and concerts will let visitors bring a piece of Japan into their homes.

Marie-Claire Richardson, Nippon Culture director: “We want to continue our diverse event program, which has been a part of the festival from its first edition, online and thus give artists the chance to present themselves and their work, even in these difficult times.”

Further details about Nippon Connection Online will be announced in the coming weeks on the homepage of the festival.

Ever since I watched Takeshi Kitano's "Hana-Bi" for the first time (and many times after that) I have been a cinephile. While much can be said about the technical aspects of film, coming from a small town in Germany, I cherish the notion of art showing its audience something which one does normally avoid, neglect or is unable to see for many different reasons. Often the stories told in films have helped me understand, discover and connect to something new which is a concept I would like to convey in the way I talk and write about films. Thus, I try to include some info on the background of each film as well as a short analysis (without spoilers, of course), an approach which should reflect the context of a work of art no matter what genre, director or cast. In the end, I hope to pass on my joy of watching film and talking about it.