Will Carroll - Assistant Professor of East Asian Studies, University of Alberta
This talk is being held in tandem with a screening of Suzuki Seijun’s Satan’s Town on February 12.
Suzuki Seijun was fired by Nikkatsu Studios in 1968, which became a watershed moment in the collapse of Japan’s studio system. As a result of this, Suzuki has typically been understood in opposition to Nikkatsu and the studio system, in spite of the fact that he made 40 feature films there, including his earliest formative films and many of the films for which he is most famous. This presentation considers Suzuki’s Nikkatsu films in the context of the studio system and mid-century Japanese genre filmmaking, and focuses on the production and distribution practices of Nikkatsu Studios. Ultimately, it argues that Suzuki’s subversive stylistic tendencies have their roots in his subtle variations of common techniques in Nikkatsu Action Cinema, which he began developing from his earliest films at the studio.
William Carroll is an Assistant Professor at the University of Alberta in the Department of East Asian Studies. His first book, Suzuki Seijun and Postwar Japanese Cinema, was published in July 2022. He is currently working on a book about cinephile culture and film production in Japan from the 1980s through the present.