Films were first shown in Japan in the late 1890s, with displays of the Edison Kinetoscope in 1896 and the Lumières’ Cinématographe in 1897. By the turn of the 20th century, local cameramen were shooting trick films (for example Shinin no sosei/Resurrection of a Corpse, 1898), scenes from Kabuki plays (Momijigari/Viewing Scarlet Maple Leaves, Tsunekichi Shibata, 1899)), and actualities. Japan’s first purpose-built cinema opened in 1903, and local production began in earnest in 1905 with the outbreak of the Russo-Japanese War. Three years later, the first film studio opened, and by 1912 the industry had expanded to the extent that four of the largest studios consolidated themselves into a trust, Nikkatsu. A distinctive feature of Japanese cinema culture in these years was the benshi, a lecturer who narrated and explained films to audiences during screenings. ...
There may be several subject headings you can use to find resources in the online catalog. The most direct subject heading is listed below. The call number range is also included.
Articles and other writings about Japanese film can be found in many publications. Our collection does not include any journal titles which look exclusively at Japanese film. You can use Film & Television Literature Index to find articles or use the search box at the top of the page.
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