KANSAI Close-up

Media Forum 2008

An annual forum, cosponsored by the Kansai Press Club, KIPPO and the International House, Osaka, was held in Osaka City on Dec.2. The 14th forum at the International House, renamed 'Media Forum' from this year, drew some 120 participants, including mass media personnel and ordinary citizens who had responded to an open invitation. They held discussions under the theme 'Kansai as a staging ground for communication via films.'
Following opening remarks by Kansai Press Club President Fumio Ikeuchi, radio personality and film critic Jun Hamamura delivered a keynote speech, 'A Splendid Darkness: Films from the West.' Looking back on the history of Japanese films, he said, 'I wish to see movies depicting ordinary people in the Kansai region in a natural fashion.'
At the ensuing panel discussions, ways of sending out information about and from Kansai via films were the main topic. Panelists were Junji Sakamoto, a film director who calls himself an Osaka native residing in Japan; Efu Wakagi, an actress and representative of a theatrical group; Ken Terawaki, a film critic and professor of Kyoto University of Art and Design; and Khanittha Matsuo, a Thai resident of Kansai and a radio personality. The moderator was Toshihiko Michiura, a Yomiuri TV announcer. (photo) The forum was followed by a reception involving panelists and other participants, including media representatives. (Tawara)