Today was the first screening of 'A2-B-C' (WEBSITE) in Japan since screenings were suddenly cancelled in March of this year (HERE). The screening, which took place outside of Tokyo in Saitama (INFO), was paired with a screening of my film 'In the Grey Zone' (WEBSITE). As I had immediately started working on 'A2-B-C' after finishing 'In the Grey Zone' (which is actually Part 1 of this story) I never had time to promote that film domestically, so this was the first time for 'In the Grey Zone' to be screened in Japan.
To be honest, with all the problems surrounding 'A2-B-C' (STORY), I had been slightly concerned about today's screenings. But I need not have been as I was in friendly territory: today's event was organized by film-lover and second-generation Hiroshima hibakusha (victim of radiation exposure) Mr. Kaneoka, who screened 'A2-B-C' last year on Hiroshima Day (STORY).
The screenings were well-attended and the Q&A's that followed were lively. The atmosphere in the room and the way in which the attendees were engaging in the discussion reinforced for me that the importance of events such as these lie not only in the watching of films (which could technically be done in the privacy of one's own home) but it is in the coming together of people to make connections, discuss and debate.