Yojiro Takita is one of the most acclaimed filmmakers working in Japan. Even though he is a veteran filmmaker, he was, until recently, relatively unknown abroad. This changed when his hit movie, DEPARTURES (aka. Okuribito) won the Best Foreign Film Oscar at the 81st Academy Awards (2009). Poised to be an international hit, few people are aware that Takita-san is also an acclaimed Pink Film director.
Entering the film world in 1974, Yojiro Takita got his start with Mukai Productions(A.K.A: Shishi Production), where he worked as an assistant director on numerous Pink Films. Seven years later, he made his directing debut with ONNA CHIKAN KYOSHI (aka. The Professor of Molesting Women), and immediately went on to direct numerous popular Pink Films. Hailed as a “Pinky genius” throughout the 1980s, Takita-san made his first non-Pink film in 1986 with COMIC ZASSHI NANKA IRANAI (aka. I Don’t Need a Comic Book). Takita-san proved that he’s a capable filmmaker in any genre. His films have enjoyed great critical praise both domestically and abroad, as well as box office success.
Yojiro Takita has stated that his filmmaking motto is, “Sadly, humans are comedians,” as a result, most of his films are comedies. Furthermore, he claims that his filmmaking roots come from the world of Pink Films. While it is true that DEPARTURES was the first official win for a Japanese film at the Academy Awards, one could also call it the first Pink / exploitation filmmaker to win an Academy Award, because Takita-san was forged in the world of Pink Filmmaking.
Selected Filmmaking Awards:
• 81st Academy Awards, Best Foreign Language Film • 32nd Japan Academy, Best Picture and Best Director • 2008 Montreal World Film Festival, Grand Prix • 2008 Hawaii International Film Festival, Audience Award • 27th Japan Academy Award, best picture and best director • 2000 Sitges - Catalonian International Film Festival, Best Film • 2002 Neuchâtel International Fantasy Film Festival, Best International Film • 17th Japan Academy Award, Best Director • 1985 Zoom Up Film Festival, Best Picture and Best Director • 1984 Zoom Up Film Festival, Best Picture and Best Director
• Departures (2008) • Ashura (2005) • When the Last Sword Is Drawn (2003) • Onmyoji: The Yin Yang Master (2001) • Secret (1999)
Selected Pink Filmography:
• The Groper Train – The Search for the Black Pearl (1984) • The Groper Train – Wedding Capriccio (1984) • Jack the Ripper in Day Time (1984) • Renzoku Boko (Successive Rape) (1983) • Chikan densha: Rumiko no oshiri (The Groper Train – Rumiko’s Ass) (1983) • Chikan densha: Motto tsuzukete (The Groper Train – Please Keep Fucking me!) (1982)