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Ōshima Nagisa

Mr. Ōshima Nagisa (大島渚), 80, a film director and commentator from Tamano, Okayama, passed away from pneumonia at a hospital in Fujisawa, Kanagawa at 15:25.

映画監督の大島渚氏が、肺炎のため神奈川県藤沢市内の病院で死去。岡山県玉野市出身。享年80。
After graduating from Kyoto University, he joined Shochiku to start his film-making career in 1954. In 1960, he married Ms. Usui Akiko, an actress whose stage name is Koyama Akiko.

His second work Cruel Story of Youth earned high praise as a film representative of the Japanese New Wave, followed by Death by Hanging, The Catch, Boy and Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence. He remains best known for his 1976 film In the Realm of the Senses, which was based on the Abe Sada case and censored for explicit scenes of sexual intercourse.

He was a regular panelist on the TV Asahi's live discussion program Asamade Nama Terebi and on other talk shows. In this Youtube clip, he is condemning Dietmember Kan Naoto who made a comment insulting actors.


He had been in and out of hospital since he had a stroke in England in February 1996. Gohatto, released in 1999, is his final work in cinema.



Source(s): NHK News, The Asahi Shimbun, The Yomiuri Shimbun


Links to professional obituaries:

Oshima was in a realm of his own

"Film director Nagisa Oshima passed away Tuesday. He was 80. While at London’s Heathrow Airport in February 1996, he suffered a stroke. Rehabilitation in the succeeding years brought him sufficiently back to health to make what would become his last film, “Gohatto,” in 1999. He also appeared frequently on television variety shows, unashamedly displaying his acerbic take on Japanese culture. Some criticized him for becoming a popular figure, claiming that this diminished his artistic legacy. But Oshima immensely enjoyed these forays into the world of the commercial hoi polloi. Back in the bubble years of the early 1980s, he marched in step dressed in a primary school uniform in a commercial for “Cockroach S,” a product that warded off and killed cockroaches..."

Nagisa Oshima, Iconoclastic Filmmaker, Dies at 80

"Nagisa Oshima, the iconoclastic filmmaker who challenged and subverted the pieties of Japanese society and the conventions of Japanese cinema and who gained international notoriety in 1976 for the sexually explicit “In the Realm of the Senses,” died on Tuesday at a hospital near Tokyo. He was 80. His office said that the cause was pneumonia, the Japanese news media reported. He had been ill since having a stroke in 1996. Mr. Oshima belonged to a generation of filmmakers for whom artistic and political rebellion were one and the same. At the height of his career he worked at a furious pace, most productively in the 1960s, reinventing himself as a matter of course. Radical but never dogmatic, his films rejected ideology even as they insisted implicitly that cinema was a political tool..."

Nagisa Oshima obituary

"In a sense, it is unfortunate that the Japanese director Nagisa Oshima, who has died aged 80, was more infamous than famous, due to one film, In the Realm of the Senses (also known as Ai No Corrida, 1976). Although it was, for many, in the realms of pornography, the film was a serious treatment of the link between the political and the sexual, eroticism and death (previously dealt with in Bernardo Bertolucci's Last Tango in Paris), and a breakthrough in the representation of explicit sex in mainstream art cinema. Like Bertolucci, Oshima was held and acquitted on an obscenity charge. Based on a true cause célèbre, In the Realm of the Senses tells of a married man and a geisha, who retreat from the militarist Japan of 1936 into a world of their own, where they obsessively act out their sexual fantasies. Finally, in the quest for the ultimate orgasm, she strangles and then castrates him. Oshima uses the formula of kabuki theatre and taps the rich erotic literary history of feudal Japan. Although In the Realm of the Senses was his biggest commercial success, it was not his best film, and his reputation declined over the following decades, during which he made only a few films..."

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