'Youkame no Semi' Wins Big at Japan Academy Prize Awards

Yoshio Harada

Film wins 10 awards, Yoshio Harada wins best actor posthumously.

TOKYO - Youkame no Semi (Rebirth) cleaned up at the 35th Japan Academy Prize awards on Friday, winning in a total of 10 categories.

As well as best film, the adaptation of Mitsuyu Kakata's award-winning book also won the best director gong for Izumi Narushima. Mao Inoue won the best actress award went for her role as a young woman dealing with the legacy of being kidnapped as an infant by her father's former mistress, while Hiromi Nagasaku won best supporting actress for the kidnapper who raised the child for four years. The film, which was made into an NHK television drama in 2010, also won a host of technical awards.

Yoshio Harada,who passed away in July 2011 after a four-decade, 80-film career, became the first posthumous winner of the best actor award, for Oshika Mura Soudouki, the story of a traditional kabuki play that is performed every year by the residents of a rural village. Harada never won the award during his lifetime and made his last public appearance promoting the film just over a week before he died.

The best supporting actor award went to Denden for Tsumetai Nettaigyo, the story of a serial killer who runs a tropical fish shop.

During the ceremony, Emi Fukatsu, winner of best actress last year for Akunin (Villain), jumped back and forth between her role as presenter and nominee in a number of categories.