Kōichi Saitō (film director)

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Kōichi Saitō
Born (1929-02-03)February 3, 1929
Died November 28, 2009(2009-11-28) (aged 80)
Occupation Film director, photographer

Kōichi Saitō (斎藤 耕一, Saitō Kōichi, 3 February 1929 – 28 November 2009) was a Japanese film director and photographer.


Born in Tokyo, Saitō started studying at Rikkyo University but ended up graduating from the Tokyo College of Photography (currently Tokyo Polytechnic University).[1][2] He was initially a movie stills photographer at Nikkatsu before launching his own production company, Saito Productions, and directing his first film, Tsubuyaki no Jō, "a low-budget, independent film with a visual flair that earned comparisons with Claude Lelouch and with Richard Lester’s Beatles films, including A Hard Day’s Night".[2] Some of his first films were youth movies featuring Group Sounds music. He came to prominence in the early 1970s with a series of movies about young people escaping to or searching for their identity in the countryside. He won the best director award at the 1972 Mainichi Film Awards.[3] His Tsugaru jongarabushi was selected the best film of 1973 in the Kinema Junpo poll of critics.[4] Saitō continued directing into his seventies and also made some documentaries.[2] He was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun (4th Class, Gold Rays with Rosette) in 2000.[5]

Selected filmography[edit]


  1. ^ "Saitō Kōichi". Nihon jinmei daijiten+Plus. Kōdansha. Retrieved 27 June 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c "Koichi Saito: film director and photographer". The Times. January 25, 2010. Retrieved 27 June 2011. 
  3. ^ "1972-nen". Mainichi Konkūru. Retrieved 27 June 2011. 
  4. ^ Gerow, Aaron. "Saito Koichi." Tangemania: Aaron Gerow's Japanese Film Page. 29 November 2009. Accessed 29 November 2009
  5. ^ "Haru no hōshō to jokun". Cinema Topics Online. 29 April 2000. Retrieved 7 July 2011. 

External links[edit]