Takeshi Kitano, comedian, film director, actor, painter, writer, singer

15:00-16:00 Wednesday, November 15, 2023
(The speech and Q & A will be in Japanese with English interpretation)
* This press conference is fully booked.

It has taken the FCCJ nearly 20 years to reel in Takeshi Kitano – he was first invited back in 2005 – but it is surely worth the wait. Kitano, better known as "Beat" Takeshi, is one of Japan's best-known artists and has been described (probably much to his surprise) as a national treasure.

Kitano began his professional life as a satirical comedian and acid-tongued TV host, but his ambition took him far beyond those roots, into an international career in acting and filmmaking. Since his early roles – most notably in 1982's "Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence," where he played a camp guard to David Bowie's British prisoner-of-war – he has evolved into an acclaimed writer, poet, artist, painter, and director.

His directorial debut was "Violent Cop" in 1989, earning him a reputation for subverting genre clichés in much the same way that Clint Eastwood has been credited with transforming the American Western. He won a Golden Lion award at the Venice Film festival for "Hanabi" in 1998 and has been dubbed the true successor to an earlier generation of brilliant Japanese filmmakers. Among his admirers is Quentin Tarantino, who calls "Sonatine" (1993), which Kitano wrote, directed, and starred in, a "masterpiece." His latest film "Kubi," a samurai tale set in the warring states period, is adapted from a book he wrote and will be screened this year.

Kitano, 76, was born into a working-class family in Tokyo and dropped out of an engineering course at Meiji University to begin his career in entertainment. In addition to a Golden Globe award, he has won accolades in France, Russia, and Italy for his contributions to film culture.

How to attend:
Please register at with your name, the name of your media outlet, and FCCJ membership number. Doors open 30 minutes before the event. Please sign in, giving your name and contact details at the reception before proceeding.

How to watch online:
Livestreaming of the press events will be available and video of this event will be uploaded to our FCCJ YouTube channel.

How to ask questions:
Members watching the event online can submit questions for the speakers in advance using this submission form.

TV crew: Please make a reservation at Doors open for TV crews only at 60 minutes before the event.

・会場での取材、TV撮影をご希望のメディアはメール にてご予約ください。ペン・スチルは1社1名、TV撮影は1社 1台まででご案内は予約順となります。TVは60分前集合、その他は30分前開場となります。
・こちらのイベントをオンライン視聴ご希望の方はライブ配信をFCCJ YouTubeチャンネルにてご覧ください。

Professional Activities Committee