the Cove

Bulletin from the cause: “The Cove” – Save Japan Dolphins

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Posted By: David Phillips
To: Members in “The Cove” – Save Japan Dolphins


It’s official, “The Cove” will open in Japan!

I can’t tell you all how tumultuous the last few weeks have been. Our greatest hope has always been to open “The Cove” in Japan. It’s the most powerful tool we have in ending the dolphin slaughter. Once people see it they have such a better understanding of the captivity issue, the IWC and more importantly, the senselessness and brutality with which these dolphins are dying.

So when theaters started cancelling their bookings, I got worried. When nationalists managed to shut down several campus screenings, I was convinced that this film would never make it into theaters. I started to really question Japan’s resolve as a democracy.

Check out:
In Reversal, Some Japan Theaters to Screen ‘The Cove’

Sometimes it only takes one person to stand up and say something is wrong. In this case, Unplugged’s CEO Takeshi Kato, would not rest. Kato San has traveled from city to city – Nagoya, Kyoto, Osaka, to name a few – meeting with theater owners. He was able to convince several theaters to not only keep the film but to come forward and stand up for the right to show it. If you ask me the nationalists picked the wrong door to knock on when they went to Kato San’s house.

He gathered others that are concerned about freedom of expression, and we put together a symposium at the Tokyo Bar Association. Four of the theater owners came forward, along with notable journalists, film directors and pundits. In all, the following people participated:

– Mr. Shinodo, Editor in Chief of Tsukura Publishing
– Kei ishizaka, popular cartoonist
– Kunio Suzuki, former leader of right wing group Issuikai
– Soichiro Tahara, renowned journalist
– Yoichi Sai, film director
– Mr. Matsumara, theater owner, Osaka
– Ms. Kamiya, theater owner, Kyoto
– Mr. Hirano, theater owner, Nagoya
– Mr. Nagasawa, representative, Forum Theaters

More than 100 press attended with 11 camera crews, including the majors, TBS and NHK. We held it at the Tokyo Bar Association.

Each theater owner spoke to the fact that they felt threatened, but that it is important to stand up. Kato San announced that six theaters will open the film on July 3, with 16 more the following week.

I can’t thank Kato San and his team enough. Especially Miyuki Takamatsu, who has been running all the press and has been our rock since we got to Japan.

Thank you also for contributing to the Japan Campaign. We have a chance to reach the Cause Fundraising goal, thanks to you.

Domo Arigato!

Ric O’Barry and the Save Japan Dolphins Team

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