Koji Wakamatsu Named Asian Filmmaker of the Year by Busan Festival

Koji Wakamatsu - P 2012
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The controversial director has more than 100 films to his name, ranging from soft-porn to anti-war.

TOKYO – Veteran Japanese independent director Koji Wakamatsu is to be honoured with the Asian Filmmaker of the Year award at this year’s Busan International Film Festival.

The award is to, “honor his spirit of independent film as a rebellious auteur and his never-ending passion for cinema,” according to a statement from the festival.

The 76-year-old helmer began his career, like many directors of his generation, in soft-core ‘pink-eiga’ - though some of his productions were considered too controversial for the genre.

Wakamatsu’s 11.25 The Day He Chose His Own Fate, the story of author and nationalist political activist Yukio Mishima, competed in Un Certain Regard at this year’s Cannes, while his Caterpillar competed for the Golden Bear at Berlin in 2010, with Shinobu Terajima winning best actress at the fest for her role in the film.  

As well as 11.25 The Day He Chose His Own Fate, the festival will also hold screenings of Kaien Hotel in Blue, and The Millennial Rapture.