The mechanism of this film, which was conceived by the screenwriter, Makoto Ueda, was an extremely interesting visual invention, and the fact that I could shoot a film using it became a tremendous driving force for me.
What was it like working with the screenwriter Makoto Ueda?
We belong to the same group called Europe Kikaku, and we also get involved in video productions on a regular basis. However, in the case of this film, it was necessary to accurately measure the time, so we worked together more than usual. It was really challenging and there were times we had a clash of ideas, but I’m happy that Ueda was satisfied with the finished film.
What was the casting process like for Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes?
Europe Kikaku is a theater group, and actors also are part of it, and all of them performed in the film. And as a guest actor, we had Ms. Aki Asakura as the heroine. As I was a big fan, I was sure that the ensemble of the performance with Europe Kikaku would be wonderful, so I made an offer.
What camera was used to film the movie?
撮影にはどのようなカメラが使用されましたか？ DJI の Osmo Pocket です。
Osmo Pocket by DJI.
It’s very impressive that the film is shot in one take. Due to this and the complexity of time travel, how did you plan and execute the directing process?
I had a strong desire to make it different from traditional Japanese movies. All the characters should have their own highlight, and make the most of the cafe atmosphere. And to perfect the consistency of time. It was going to be an extremely challenging production, but I wanted to make a film in which the accumulation of small details rushes like raging billows to the audience for 70 minutes. We paid particular attention to time management. Our screenwriter kept a stopwatch on set and constantly timed the two-minute difference.
Can you tell us about the cinematography in Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes?
There was no particularly difficult shooting technique or composition. That's because the audience today must be tired of it. We didn’t do any tricks and just shot a simple movie. But it was hard. (laughs)
What were your favorite parts of filming, Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes?
The climax scene actually had a different outcome in the script. As we filmed, I started to feel something was not quite right, so did Ueda, and he rewrote the script. I remember being very excited because the result was so good.
Which films and directors have influenced you as a filmmaker, including Beyond the Infinite Two Minutes?
I was influenced by many filmmakers, but Mamoru Oshii, James Gunn, and Michel Gondry especially inspired me tremendously. If I hadn't seen the works of these three directors, I wouldn't be where I am now.
What are some of your favorite movies from the past decade?
Personally, I am interested in works that deal with the current relationship with family, friends, and lovers. Due to the impact of the coronavirus, there is a need for drastic changes that are different from the past, so there must be themes that can be created only now.