January 20, 2014
Chiisai Ouchi (The Little House), a film in whose production Sumitomo Corporation has been participating, will open in theaters nationwide on January 25. The film is based on the bestselling novel Chiisai Ouchi, winner of the 143rd Naoki Sanjugo Prize. Yoji Yamada, the film's director, came across the novel by chance in a bookstore, found it appealing and decided to make it into a movie. Over a directing career spanning more than 50 years, Yamada has long been involved in films dealing with "family ties," and his latest movie takes on the challenge of "family secrets," revealing the enchanting love affairs concealed in the little house over a period of 60 years.
Joining Yamada at the December 26 premiere showing were 13 cast members, including Takako Matsu, Haru Kuroki, Hidetaka Yoshioka, and Chieko Baisho. The premiere was held at Kabuki-za, an age-old symbol of Tokyo's Ginza district. With the female cast members clad in kimonos, Takako Matsu and Chieko Baisho accompanied Yamada along the runway as they mounted the stage. Yamada and the film's impressive cast lined up on the red carpet to massive applause from the audience.
In commenting on this film, which portrays life in two eras--Showa (1926-1988) and Heisei (1989-present)--Yamada said: "I hope it will prompt people to ponder and question whether our country and our planet are in fact heading in the direction of happiness."
Yamada is now 82 and Chiisai Ouchi is his 82nd film. Enjoy this newest addition to Yamada's cinema, a passionate movie full of deep affection that represents somewhat of a departure from his previous work.
(C) 2014 Chiisai Ouchi Production Committee
One highlight of the film is the modern worldview of the Showa era 60 years ago
(C)2014 Chiisai Ouchi Production Committee
Chieko Baisho as Taki Nunomiya, and Satoshi Tsumabuki as Taki's grandnephew Takeshi Arai
The film was the first to be shown in the new Kabuki-za opened in April