Interviews on Tokyo-Ga

Roger Macy macyroger at
Fri Feb 5 18:50:10 EST 2010

Dear Kinejapaners,
Thank you all for your responses a while back on the term 'tendency film'.  May I ask questions on another item of Ozu apocrypha ?
Last month,  at the NFT, I saw, as part of the side-bar series 'Ozu and his influence', the film by Wim Wenders, Tokyo-Ga, released in 1985.  I hadn't, at the time, noticed Tony Rayns' remark in January Sight and Sound, describing the film as "frequently wretched" (p26).  I'd say he was being excessively polite and I only want to remark on the last bit where there are interviews of RYU Chishu and ATSUTA Yuharu, Ozu's cameraman.
My point concerns the lack of credit.  Patently, the filmed interviews are not conducted by Wenders, but by a native Japanese speaker who can occasionally be heard.  There is no credit on the film, or on the Criterion DVD coupling with Late Spring,  to any interviewer, or to a translator (which Wenders must have used specifically for his voiceover of this section).  The literature all talks of Wenders doing the interviewing.
The only clue is on IMDb, where there are 'thanks' to 'Shigehiko Hasumi'.

David Bordwell, on pp74-75 seems to cite the interview in Tokyo-Ga and  the French translation of an interview of Atsuta by Hasumi, almost in the same breath.

1) Was Hasumi indeed the interviewer on Tokyo-Ga ?
2) Since Hasumi's interview cited by Bordwell comes from Hasumi's 1982 book, Kantoku Ozu Yasujiro (which I have not seen), I presume the footage on Tokyo-Ga, are not the same event ?
3) Who is doing the thanking on IMDb ? and~
4) If someone has made a fuss about this before to get the IMDb credit, why can I find no trace of it, or of Hasumi's work, - at least in any western language ?

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