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70 Directors for Venice 70

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Sion Sono, born in Toyokawa in 1961, is a Japanese director, poet and composer. He has written poetry since he was an adolescent and in 1985 made his first short film Ore wa Sono Sion da! (I Am Sion Sono!), in which the author himself reads some of his writings. His first feature-length film came in 1989 with Kessen! Joshiryou tai Danshiryou (Decisive Match! Girls Dorm Against Boys Dorm). In 2001 he filmed Jisatsu sâkuru (Suicide Club), a horror film in which the main character investigates a series of mysterious collective suicides in Japan. The film is the first of a trilogy that addresses the themes of solitude and alienation, and the second chapter Kimyô na sakâsu (Strange Circus, 2005) was presented and appreciated at the Berlin Film Festival. The same year he made Hazard and Noriko no shokutaku (Noriko’s Dinner Table) presented in various international film festivals including the Yokohama Film Festival. He later won the First Prize at the Austin Fantastic Fest, with Ekusute (Exte: Hair Extensions, 2007). One of his most famous films is Ai no mukidashi (Love Exposure, 2008), which won several prizes around the world including the Fipresci award at the Berlin Film Festival. His first participation in the Venice Film Festival was in 2010, when he presented the film Tsumetai nettaigyo (Cold Fish) in the Orizzonti section of the 67th edition of the Venice Film Festival. He returned in 2011 with Himizu, the story of two adolescents with tormented lives against the background of the disaster of Fukushima, which won the young stars Fumi Nikaidô and Shôta Sometani the “Marcello Mastroianni” award. His next film Kibô no kuni (2012) participated in the Toronto International Film Festival. In 2013 he will be back in Venice in the Orizzonti section with the action movie Jigoku de naze warui.
2010 – Tsumetai Nettaigyo (Cold Fish) – Orizzonti section (screenplay, director)
2011 – Himizu – In Competition (screenplay, director)
2013 – Jigoku de naze warui (Why Don’t You Play in Hell?) – Orizzonti section (director)

2011 – Himizu – “Marcello Mastroianni” Award to Best Emerging Young Actor and Actress to Fumi Nikaidô and Shôta Sometani


70 Directors for Venice 70