German director Doris Doerrie has begun shooting “Greetings From Fukushima,” a Japan-set drama about life, love and loss. It is set in the aftermath of the triple disaster – earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown — that hit Japan in 2011.
The film marks a return to Japan for Doerrie who previously wrote and directed “Hanami” (“Cherry Blossoms”) there in 2008. The production reunites many of the key elements of the previous film including: producers Harry Kuegler, and Molly von Fuerstenberg. Majestic Filmproduktion’s Benjamin Herrmann also produces.
The story follows the journey of a young German woman who joins a charity circus troupe that travels to the quake-hit Fukushima region. There she meets an elderly Japanese woman who may be one of the last active geisha. Though the pair have little in common, they both have elements of their past to come to terms with.
Rosalie Thomass (“Ein Ganz Heisse Nummer,” “Beste Chance”) plays the German woman. Veteran Japanese star Kaori Momoi plays her opposite number. Other roles go to clown Moshe Cohen, Aya Irizuki and musician Nami Kamata.
The film is a production of Olga Film in co-production with Rolize, Constantin Film, ZDF and Arte. It was funded by the FilmFernsehFonds Bayern, the German Federal Film Board, and the German Federal Film Fund. Ruth Stadler and Patrick Zorer are executive producers.
Shooting on location in Fukushima province and in Tokyo will continue through May, before the crew shifts to Germany for remaining scenes in Bavaria. Hanno Lentz, who previously shot “Cherry Blossoms,” is cinematographer.
World distribution is handled by the Match Factory. Majestic Filmverleih will release in Germany on March 10, 2016.