Courses and Faculty | Department of Film Production

Students engage in film production while learning from specialists in seminars focused on their area of study. The program enables students to deepen their knowledge of film and enhance their sensibilities while also studying their own field in depth. The department uses professional-quality facilities and equipment and the instructors are specialists who work at the forefront of the industry.

Directing Course

Students gain the knowledge and decision-making skills necessary for directing and each person develops his or her own voice as an individual auteur through practical experience.

Filmmaking necessarily entails the collaborative effort of numerous specialists, and the director plays a definitive role in shaping the production. Students in this course broaden their understanding of film through classes and seminars and develop their judgement on-set through practical experience. They learn how to express their individuality as artists while working in a collaborative environment.


Directing Course
Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Professor

Born in 1955. Began making 8mm movies as a university student and has directed over 40 films spanning multiple genres. His best-known titles include Cure, Charisma, Bright Future, and Pulse, which won the International Federation of Film Critics Prize at the 54th Cannes Film Festival, and Tokyo Sonata, which won the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at the 61st Cannes Film Festival. His works are highly acclaimed internationally and have been featured frequently in special programs around the world. He is the author of Eiga wa osoroshii (Movies Are Scary) and other books on cinema, and has novelized several movies.


Directing Course
Nobuhiro Suwa, Professor

Born in 1960. Became involved in independent movies while attending Tokyo Zokei University. After graduating and gaining experience in producing TV documentaries, he directed 2/Duo (1997), which won the NETPAC Award at the Rotterdam International Film Festival. He was awarded the FIPRESCI Prize in the Parallel Sections at Cannes Film Festival for M/Other. Other major works include H Story, Paris, je t’aime (omnibus), Un Couple Parfait, which won the Special Prize of the Jury at the Locarno International Film Festival, and Yuki & Nina. He is known for his filmmaking approach that uses loosely written scripts.

Screenwriting Course

Students study filmmaking to establish their own artistic identity.

Screenplays are an assembly of words that conjure up images and sounds. The screenwriter needs to imagine in advance everything that the cast and crew will create. The avenues for presenting films will continue to evolve through online distribution and live events. The Screenwriting Course aims to give students the knowledge needed to create outstanding work and help them establish their own artistic identity so they can bring their ideas to fruition across all media and platforms.


Screenwriting Course
Yuji Sakamoto, Professor

Born in 1967. Won the Fuji TV Young Scenario Award at the age of 19. At the age of 23 he wrote the screenplay for Tokyo Love Story, concentrating thereafter on writing screenplays for TV drama series. Recent works include Watashitachi no kyokasho (Our Textbook), Mother, Soredemo ikite yuku (Still, Lift Goes On), Saiko no rikon (The Greatest Divorce), Woman, Mondai no aru resutoran (A Restaurant with Many
Problems), and Itsuka kono koi wo omoidashite kitto naite shimau (Love That Makes You Cry).

Producing Course

Students experience film production first hand to learn about the producer’s wide-ranging responsibilities from pre-production to release.

This course was developed as Japan’s first program aimed at training film producers. In order to grasp the work of the producer, hands-on experience is more important than classroom theory. In other words, students must experience for themselves the rigorous conditions of film production starting with the proposal to preparing the script, budgeting, and negotiating contracts. After production is complete, the producer oversees the publicity and distribution strategy, including film festival entries and overseas sales. Students also gain valuable industry experience through exposure to the faculty’s on-going professional projects. This course trains producers who possess their own vision of filmmaking and have honed their problem-solving and decision-making skills. Students gain the knowledge and skill set to work on wide-ranging media projects at a global scale.


Producing Course
Shoji Masui, Professor

Masui started his career at Daiei Film Co., Ltd. and later established Altamira Pictures, Inc. He has produced quality entertainment films with directors like Masayuki Suo, I tsumichi Isomura and Shinobu Yaguchi. He is credited on many hit films such as Water Boys and Shall We Dance?, which was released worldwide. Masui crosses over the mainstream and independent border freely, as indicated by his involvement in many music documentary films such as Takada Wataru-teki.


Producing Course
Shozo Ichiyama, Visiting Professor

Cinematography Course

Develop your sense of aesthetics and communication abilities for team work, along with technical knowhow

The cinematography and lighting course involves taking the concepts from the producer, scriptwriter and director and making them into something concrete through your own personal filter. Of course, you need to acquire wide-ranging knowledge and technical skills in order to create a film, but you will also raise your sights in searching for higher dimensions of cinematic expression, with an emphasis on communication with other departments in the film crew. In the studio work, the cinematography and lighting students work together as a team using professional-spec equipment to sharpen individual skills and sensibilities.


Cinematography Course
Kazushige Tanaka, Professor (appointed April 2018)

Worked as a freelance camera assistant on television and film projects after graduating from the Yokohama Broadcasting Technical School (currently the Japan Institute of the Moving Image). In 1994 interned in the U.S. and Australia through the Agency for Cultural Affairs’ Program of Overseas Study for Artists. Main works include director Hajime Hashimoto’s Phone Call to the Bar (Tantei wa bar ni iru); Takashi Miike’s Dead or Alive 2, Dead or Alive Final, Gozu, and Zebraman; Kankuro Kudo’s Shonen Merikensack, and Maruyama the Middle Schooler; Hitoshi Matsumoto’s R-100; Wakamatsu Koji’s Scrap story: Aru ai no monogatari and Kiss yori kantan 2; as well as Kamen Rider The First and Kamen Rider The Next. Serves on the board of the Japanese Society of Cinematographers.

Art Directing Course

Students acquire knowledge and artistic sensitivity that transcends technique.

The furniture, wardrobe and props seen on screen must match the time and place for the story being told and also be appropriate for the atmosphere of the film. Art direction requires wide-ranging knowledge and finely honed sensibilities. The Art Directing Course uses seminars and on-set experience to foster production acumen that goes beyond mere technique.


Art Directing Course
Toshihiro Isomi, Professor

Born in 1957. After graduating from university, Isomi worked in various professions before moving into stage art and direction, and eventually movies, as a set designer. His works include Hirokazu Koreeda’s Nobody Knows, Hana yorimo naho, and Even If You Walk and Walk; Sogo Ishii’s Labyrinth of Dreams and GQjoe: Spirit War Chronicle; Yoichi Sai’s Doing Time and Blood and Bones; Kazuo Kuroki’s A Boy’s Summer in 1945; Kinji and Kenta Fukasaku’s Battle Royale II; Naomi Kawase’s The Mourning Forest; Satoshi Miki’s Adrift in Tokyo; and Ryosuke Hashiguchi’s Gururi no koto.

Sound Design Course

Students learn practical and experimental sound design for film and new media.

The Sound Design Course is built on three main pillars of instruction (excluding classes shared with other areas).

  1. Studio seminars to gain hands-on experience with equipment used for on-set recording and mixing work
  2. Lectures to cultivate knowledge of visual expression from the viewpoint of sound design and enable students to develop their own ideas
  3. On-set film production experience

The course enables students to master the specific skills needed to work in the industry in roles including sound artist and soundtrack composer. The course also gives students the opportunity to use the sound mastering room and recording equipment to pursue original research and experiments with sound design as part of cinematic expression.


Sound Design Course
Hiroyuki Nagashima, Professor

Nagashima’s work on the live sound remix of a movie directed by Sogo Ishii led to work on music and sound for numerous works spanning multiple media. His sound work for movies include Sogo Ishii’s Angel Dust, Katsuhiro Otomo’s Memories episode 3 – ‘Cannon Fodder’ (Taiho no machi), Shinji Aoyama’s Eli, Eli, Lema Sabachtani?, Kunitoshi Manda’s Seppun (The Kiss), Hiroshi Takahashi’s Kyofu (The Sylvian Experiments), and Makoto Shinozaki’s Sharing. He also performs with Dowser, an electronic music group.

Editing Course

Students acquire skills to work as digital-are editors who can realize the director’s intent, and more.

Editing brings filmed images to life by giving shape to dailies shot according to the storyboard, as well as images that appear on frame by accident. Even as we transition from film to digital media, the essentials of editing remain the same: in-depth analysis of the material, effective communication within the production team, identifying the subject of the work, and discovering whether or not specific elements connect. Mastering these skills requires knowledge of film as well as the world at large. Technique can be developed only once the editor viscerally grasps the ideas that need to be expressed.

We live in an age when anyone can edit a film using digital tools, which makes the editor’s position increasingly complicated. Can an editor possibly work with more precision than the director? This course teaches fundamental techniques starting with reel film editing and cultivates editors who can work effectively in the ever-changing film industry environment.


Editing Course
Takefumi Tsutsui, Professor

Tsutsumi began making films while attending Tokyo Zokei University. He made his feature-length film directorial debut in 1987 with the silent movie Yumeko no daibouken. In addition to his work as a film editor and director, he has written countless film reviews. Tsutsui’s major films include Overdrive in 2004, Bahha no shozo (Bach’s Portrait) in 2010, and Kodokuna wakusei (Lonely Planet) in 2011. Recently he completed Fancy Free and Eizo no hakken=Matsumoto Toshio no jidai.