Sakamoto to be honored at BIFF

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Sakamoto to be honored at BIFF

Prominent Japanese musician Ryuichi Sakamoto has been chosen as the winner of the Asian Filmmaker of the Year Award by the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF), its organizer said Wednesday.

“The 23rd BIFF announces Ryuichi Sakamoto as the winner of the Asian Filmmaker of the Year Award in recognition of his music and life,” the festival said in a press release.

The award is granted to a figure or organization with outstanding achievements in improving and developing the Asian film industry and facilitating cultural development.

Debuting in 1978 with YMO (Yellow Magic Orchestra), Sakamoto pioneered electronic music and electro hip-hop.

He has since expanded his musical boundaries from classical music into rock and opera.

He entered the world of film music with “Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence” (1983) by director Nagisa Oshima.

Sakamoto was the first Asian to win the Academy Award for Best Original Score for “The Last Emperor” (1986), and later won the Golden Globe Awards and the British Academy Film Awards for “The Sheltering Sky” (1990) and “Little Buddha” (1993) to become the master of film music.

Following his triumphant musical return after a diagnosis of throat cancer in 2014, he has composed film scores for Korean historical film “The Fortress” (2017), “My TYRANO: Together, Forever” (2019) and “The Revenant” (2015), which was nominated for the Golden Globe Awards and Grammy Awards.

In June, “Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda,” the musical documentary portraying his music and life, opened in Korea timed for the 40th anniversary of his musical career.

The 23rd edition of BIFF is set to run in South Korea’s southern port city of Busan from Oct. 4 to 13.

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