SUPER JAPAN on Discovery Channel

Entertainment Press Releases Thursday March 13, 2014 09:02
Bangkok--13 Mar--Bangkok Public Relations

SUPER JAPAN – five documentaries by the winners of Discovery Channel’s First Time Filmmakers (FTFM) Japan – celebrates the evolvement of Japan into the global powerhouse it is today. From an ancient culture to ingenious modern technologies, and local favorites to global phenomena, the programmes showcase Japan through some of its most notable progressions, obsessions, and achievements.

FTFM Japan is a partnership between Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific and the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, Japan (MIC). The project is designed to help develop the documentary storytelling skills of Japanese filmmakers and provide a platform to showcase their talent, while bringing the world these insightful stories that reveal what makes contemporary Japan tick.

SUPER JAPAN, premiering on Discovery Channel on March 17-19 at 1800 hrs. on Discovery Channel (TrueVisions 19).
Episode Guide
BIG BOYS CLUB – 17 March at 18.00
Director: Takeaki Nameki, Nikkei Visual Images, Inc.

After the devastation of World War II, Japan rose from the ashes to become a global powerhouse. This astonishing transformation hinged on the vision and determination of the engineers and companies that developed powerful machines that could rebuild a new national infrastructure from scratch. This programme brings this story up to date by exploring the innovations behind Japan’s latest generation of high-tech behemoths, from massive tunnel borers to high-reach demolition machines, and shows how they are shaping modern Japan – and the world.

RAMENOMANIA - 17 March at 18.30
Director: Nakai Yoshitaka, TV Tokyo

Each autumn, half a million people attend Tokyo’s ramen festival, while a million visit the ramen museum in Yokohama yearly. This episode explores Japan’s obsession with noodles and shines the spotlight on the ever-popular ramen – one of the country’s most loved foods that is set to go global. Follow Kenji Tsukada, one of the best ramen chefs in the country, as he works to create a new dish to present at Singapore’s first ramen festival. Meanwhile, Masahiro Nakano, ramen enthusiast and an employee of Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum, makes a video for the museum that teaches foreigners how to slurp. The film interweaves their stories with those of other ramen fanatics, including a belly dancer who can eat 25 bowls in a day, an American blogger who has eaten in more than 800 ramen shops, and a Japanese ramen critic who has eaten 21,500 bowls of ramen.

ON-TIME METRO - 18 March at 18.00
Director: Yasuhiro Uematsu, Collaboration Inc.

With 179 stations, nine lines and over 2.3 billion users each year, the Tokyo Metro is the heart of Tokyo’s public transport system. It is so punctual that people set their watches by the arrival of the trains; if a train is more than a minute late, the driver has to make a personal apology. This episode goes behind the scenes to explore the skills, mindset, technologies and training – for station staff and drivers who are trained to drive at precise speeds even if the technology fails – behind its bewildering reliability and punctuality. Also, uncover the contingency plans – to counter terrorism and earthquakes – as well as new technologies that improve safety and systematic preventative maintenance.

SEA WHISPERERS - 18 March at 18.30
Director: Masashi "Sho" Matsuhashi, Japan Cable Television Ltd

It is thought the culture of Japan’s female free-divers, or Ama, goes back 5,000 years. The key to their culture is their identity as women free-divers who understand the need to live in harmony with nature if future generations are to continue their way of life. This means they refuse to use scuba tanks because that would make it too easy to overharvest the abalone and turban shells on which they depend for a living. With environmental changes threatening their livelihoods and most Ama now more than 65 years old, their future, as free-diving champion Ai Futaki discovers, is far from secure.

POPCORN DREAMS - 19 March at 18.00
Director: Naoto Ueda, TV Asahi

This episode showcases the global expansion of the J-POP idol group, AKB48 from Akihabara, Tokyo, and examines its first overseas venture, sister group JKT48 in Jakarta, Indonesia. Follow Melody Nurramdhani Laksani, a local JKT48 member as she hones her performing skills to become a pop idol sensation in Indonesia; and Haruka Nakagawa, a Japanese girl who transferred from AKB48 to JKT48 to help the Indonesian girls replicate the AKB songs and dance moves – and whose character and efforts to learn the local language is attracting a growing fan base. Also featuring Yasushi Akimoto, the producer who invented the AKB formula, this episode offers unique insight into Japan’s pop idol culture.

For more information please contact Bangkok Public Relations Ltd.,
Tel:02-664 9500 Khun Kanthicha ext.112 and Khun Pattima ext.113

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