Hidekazu Hirai

It was very gentle place even for a rustic and everything I saw looked new and cool.
There were music, theater play, literature, art around me,
I was doing what I like as much as I could,
And I absorbed lots of things like a sponge.
Of course, the film was one of them.

8 years had passed since I left Nara in 1997.
I heard the news of a young director from Nara having won the Cannes grand prize as the youngest ever when I went back to Nara with a bit of regret from the city.
Besides, she shoot her film in my home town Yoshino, by choosing local people as casts and by living there.
I had a big shock as I was hit strongly with a hammer.

I was so happy and called all the friends in Tokyo to tell the excitement.

At the same time, I couldn't stop feeling how narrow and small my values were as I've been so disrespecting toward the community which raised me.

Since then, I started to be more conscious about my home town Nara.

With lots of nature,
Simple and friendly people,
The "relaxation and "without being too sophisticated.

Atmospheric and wet narrow streets.
Bare plaster walls without maintenance.
Quietness of shrines and temples inside communities.

Deer and Big statue of Buddha are cool,
But you can see better aspects of Nara gradually besides those.
I started realizing that there are many people moving into Nara from big cities by looking for slow life.

I started to have an obscure wish to do something dealing with favorite films and
Joined Tohkae-candle night festival in Nara, Sento festival through the junior chamber international in Nara and learned about my home town gradually.

It's been 12 years since then.
I joined Nara International Film Festival since July 2009 by chance.

The originality which other film festivals don't have.
We will aim for a film festival which revive Nara to appeal Nara to the world.

My dream is to hold a film festival where we host people with simple,
Modesty and warm heart without any flashy advertisement according to characteristic of Nara.

And we'd like to hold a film festival where children living in Nara can feel to be happy to be born here.

I will be the executive director.
I work as a plant manager of Kakinohazushi, Nara traditional Sushi shop "Hirasho".
My name is Hidekazu Hirai.

Thank you.



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