Guest in Focus: ITAKO – Boys For Sale

Welcome back to Guest in Focus, where we ask a few questions of some of our featured filmmakers in the Nippons Visions section of the festival. Today, we learn a bit about ITAKO, director of the Nippon Visions documentary Boys for Sale, which premiered on Wednesday evening.  


When and how did you first get into filmmaking?

Last year, somehow.

What were your first film projects?

This is.

Where did you get the idea for Boys for Sale, and what story would you like it to tell?

A transsexual woman went into a bar on the second floor of a building in Ni-chome, trying to avoid other people’s gaze. “For a tiny bar with just a few seats, there were far too many bartenders.” On the other side of the bar counter, there were about ten young men. When I opened the menu, instead of a list of drinks I found a sheet with photos of the young men, together with their age (18-24 years), hobbies, body type, and sexual orientation (many were straight). It was also indicated whether or not they would have sex with men, and there was a price list.

I wanted to know more about why straight men get into sex work. However the only way to talk with them was to buy them, and go to a room on the upper floor…

Were there any funny or difficult situations you experienced during the shooting?

I’m looking forward to questions from the audience after they saw and felt the film.

What do you think about the current situation of Japanese cinema?

I only just started to make films, so I can’t say anything about the current state of Japanese cinema.

Which three Japanese films from the last decade do you think everybody should see?

The program team of Nippon Connection gets to watch a lot of great Japanese films. I’d be interested to know their choices for the three films.

Do you have an all-time favorite film, and if yes, is there a particular reason why it’s your favorite?

My favourite films change depending on the time. I’m looking forward to finding my favourite at this Nippon Connection.

Who is the director/filmmaker that influenced you the most?

It’s a director I respect very much, and I don’t want to cause them trouble, so I can’t say their name here.

Have you ever been to Germany before, and if so, what was your favorite/strangest/funniest experience?

No, I’ve never been to Germany.

Translated from Japanese.  


映画作りを始めたのはいつ頃ですか。どのようなきっかけでしたか 。




『売買ボーイズ』のアイディアはどこで得たものですか。また、その映 画の中で、監督が表現しようとしているのは、どのようなストーリ ーですか?









一番好きな映画がありましたら教えてください。また、その理由は なんですか。




ドイツに来られたことはありますか?もしありましたら、一番好き な・変な・面白い経験はなんでしたか。



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