Nuclear Nation



Nov 28. NN Screening & Symposium at Univ. Tokyo


Title: Film Screening: “Nuclear Nation”

Date: 18:30-21:00, Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

Place: Collaboration Room 3 (4F), Building 18, University of Tokyo, Komaba [Map]

Nuclear Nation
Year: 2012
Film Length: 96 minutes
Subtitles: English
Director: Funahashi Atsushi, Documentary Japan
Discussant: Sato Yoshiaki

While the Japanese government announced that the Tohoku nuclear crisis has been “stabilized” in November of 2011, the 20 km no-entry zone around the leaking plant in Fukushima remains in effect. Today, over a year after the disaster, there are as yet no plans for the thousands of evacuated residents to return home.

Director Funahashi Atsushi’s film Nuclear Nation tells the story of Futaba, a small town inside the Fukushima no-entry zone. Located just 4 km from the nuclear plant, Futaba was evacuated in the early days of the crisis, as the plant operator struggled to bring the triple meltdown under control. Over 1,400 residents were relocated to an unused high school in Saitama, where they faced an unknown future.

Nuclear Nation patiently explores the lives of the town’s refugees, in their search for both justice and a way forward. Though extensive interviews with former residents and local officials, the film gives a history of the invisible nuclear economy in Japan that is both lucid and highly revealing.

In the tradition of the best of Japanese documentary cinema, Funahashi has gone to extraordinary lengths to depict the situation of the Fukushima refugees, to communicate their voices, and to interrogate the promises and contradictions of the government’s energy policy at the level of everyday life.

We are pleased invite you to join us for this special screening, to be followed by a discussion and Q & A with the director.

Funahashi Atsushi is an independent filmmaker working in both dramatic and documentary modes. His first films — Echoes (2001) and Big River (2006) — were produced while Funahashi lived in the United States. After returning to Japan in 2007, he has directed Deep in the Valley (2009), Nuclear Nation (2012), and Cold Bloom (2012). Funahashi’s work has received wide critical attention and screenings at numerous international film festivals.

Prof. Sato Yoshiaki has taught American Literature and Popular Music in the Department of Culture and Representation at the University of Tokyo, Komaba. His publications include The Evolution of J-POP (1999) and What Was the Beatles? (2006). A distinguished translator, Prof. Sato has translated Gregory Bateson’s Mind and Nature and Steps to an Ecology of Mind into Japanese. At present, he is translating the completed novels of Thomas Pynchon.

Language: English; Admission Free; No Registration Required


For more details please go see the U Tokyo’s webiste.


NN Screening in Florence, Italy!!

On Nov 15th “Nuclear Nation”, will be screened at Festival dei Popoli, International documentary film festival at Florence.

“Atsushi Funahashi does not present us the tragedies caused by the accident, but the deep sense of a country that tries to bring back to normality what is no longer normal.” – festival catalog.




Everyday between Oct 13 thru Oct 26.

12:30 (no subttiles)
18:50 (with English Subtitles)

At Auditorium Shibuya (1-5 Maruyamacho, Shibuya-ku;

Please come by! The director Atsushi Funahashi will have a talk show after the screening everyday.


”Cold Bloom”, Funahashi’s new film will WORLD PREMIERE at Busan IFF!


“Cold Bloom”, my new film will have the world premiere at Busan International Film festival. If you are there please check it out!



Edinburgh IFF Report


“Nuclear Nation” was screened at Edinburgh International Film Festival.
Moderated by Chris Fujiwara, artistic director of the festival, Q&A session and discussion with me and the audience were very intense. The topic includes: today’s dilemma of Fukushima refugees, moral hazard of using nuclear power, Japanese history of atomic energy and bombs, media ethics, etc.

Prior to the screening “Fukushima & Documentary,” a discussion event was held at St. John’s church.
I talked about the human cost of this nuclear crisis with Toshi Fujiwara, director of “No Man’s Zone.”

Opening Night Gala!
Artistic Director Chris Fujiwara & Atsushi Funahashi
An interesting coincidence was that his Holiness 14th Dalai Lama came to Edinbrgh to give a lecture on that day.
We shared some audience and heat to the theme: human ego in modern civilization. (Atsushi Funahashi)


Wall Street Journal “‘Nuclear Nation’ Examines Lives of Fukushima Refugees. (Feb 17)”


The interview of dir Atsushi Funahashi

“I wanted to depict this waiting time that you easily neglect. They’ve been put in a situation where they have to live in a classroom with 20 people eating boxed lunches, with no privacy, some money for temporary commutes back [home]….It’s unforgivable to me.”

Category:Berlinale 2012

NN reviewed on Korean newspaper.


“Nuclear Nation” was reviewed by The Kyunghyang Shinmun, with an interview of dir. Atsushi Fuanahshi. (Issued on Thursday May 17th 2012. Reporter: Jeong-min Mok )

후나하시 아쓰시_News Artcile of Funahashi Atsushi_17MAY2012_京鄕新聞.jpg


Screening at Green Film Festival in Seoul


“Nuclear Nation” will be screened tomorrow as part of their International Competition. Please come by if you happen to be in Seoul!

For details and schedule:



March 11th Interview aired on Radio Magic City Six. (Germany)


Here’s the interview aired on March 11th, 2012 as part of their one-year anniversary special program.

March 11 in Japan, documentary “Nuclear Nation” and “Kizuna in Berlin” volunteer help organization.

“And suddenly everything changed.
One year after the earthquake and nuclear accident in Japan, director ATSUSHI FUNAHASHI and producer YOSHIKO HASHIMOTO talk about their documentary “Nuclear Nation” and Dr. FRANK BROSE and BRIGITTE JOGSCHIES of Kizuna in Berlin e.V. talk about volunteer work in Japan. “

Category:Berlinale 2012

NY Times article on Fukushima docs and “disaster tourism”

A very good article on “Nuclear Nation” and “No Man’s Zone”, another documentary on Fukushima catastrophe by Tohsi Fujiwara.

Post-Traumatic Filmmaking in Japan

Category:Berlinale 2012