Set in Tokyo, Director Wim Wenders PERFECT DAYS follows Hirayama (Kōji Yakusho) a toilet cleaner with a highly structured routine. Every morning, he wakes up to the sound of a street cleaner, waters his plants, buys a coffee from the vending machine outside his apartment, and gets into his truck. His workday routine, he travels around Tokyo, cleaning the city’s public toilets. He eats lunch in the same park and takes a photo of the leaves above him while eating. After working more, he goes to the bathhouse, gets dinner at the same restaurant, reads for a bit, and goes to bed. We are joined by the award winning Director and co-scriptwriter Wim Wenders (Paris Texas, Wings of Desire, Buena Vista Social Club) and Producer and co-scriptwriter Takuma Takasaki to talk working with renown actor Kōji Yakusho to create Hirayama, making Tokyo a central character in the story, the cultural importance of the “common good”, and the meaning of the word Komorebi.
About the filmmaker – Director, Writer Wim Wenders (born 1945) came to international prominence as one of the pioneers of German Cinema during the 1970’s and is now considered one of the most important figures in contemporary film. In addition to his many prize-winning feature films, his work as a scriptwriter, director, producer, photographer and author also encompasses an abundance of innovative documentary films. His career as a filmmaker began in 1967 when Wenders enrolled at the newly founded University of Television and Film Munich (HFF Munich). Parallel to his studies, he also worked as a film critic for a number of years. Upon graduating from the academy in 1971, he founded, together with fifteen other directors and authors, the Filmverlag der Autoren, a film distribution company for German auteur films, which organized the production, rights administration and distribution of their own independent films. After “The Goalie’s Anxiety at the Penalty Kick” (1971), his first feature length film after his graduation film, “Summer in the City”, Wenders turned to shooting his road movie trilogy, “Alice in the Cities” (1973), “Wrong Move” (1975) and “Kings of the Road (1976), in which his protagonists try to come to terms with their rootlessness in post-war Germany. His international breakthrough came with “The American Friend” (1977), an adaptation of a Patricia Highsmith novel. Since then, Wenders has continued to work both in Europe and the USA as well as in Latin America and Asia and has been honored with countless awards at festivals around the world, including the Golden Lion at the international Film Festival in Venice for “The State of Things” (1982); the Golden Palm at the Cannes Festival and the BAFTA Film Award for “Paris, Texas” (1984); the Director’s Prize in Cannes for “Wings of Desire” (1987); or the Silver Bear for “The Million Dollar Hotel” (2000) at the Berlin International Film Festival. His documentary films “Buena Vista Social Club” (1999), “Pina” (2011), and “The Salt of the Earth” (2014) have all been nominated for an Oscar. In 2015, Wenders received the Honorary Golden Bear for his lifetime achievement at the Berlin International Film Festival. In 2022, he was awarded the Praemium Imperiale, also known as the “Nobel Prize for the Arts”, by the Japan Arts Association. Among other honorary titles and positions, he has been a member of the Akademie der Künste and the European Film Academy in Berlin of which he was the President from 1996 to 2020. He taught as a professor at the University of Fine Arts in Hamburg until 2017. Wim Wenders is a member of the order Pour le Mérite. In 2012, together with his wife Donata, Wim Wenders established the Wim Wenders Stiftung, a non-profit foundation based in his native city of Düsseldorf. The WWS is archiving, restoring and presenting the cinematic, photographic, artistic and literary work of Wim Wenders and makes it permanently accessible to a worldwide public. At the same time, the foundation supports young talents in the field of innovative storytelling, especially through the Wim Wenders Stipendium, a grant awarded together with the Filmund Medienstiftung NRW. wim-wenders.com
About the filmmaker – Producer, Writer Takuma Takasaki is one of Japan’s leading Creative Directors, and he has also been active as a novelist in recent years. He is currently the Growth Officer at Dentsu Inc. In 2002, he won international awards such as Cannes International Advertising Festival, One Show, NY ADC, and Adfest for the Advertising Council Japan commercial. In Japan, he has been named “Creator of the Year” twice. He specializes in story-based commercials as well as building large campaigns. He has created a commercial for a movie distribution service featuring Robert De Niro, and a commercial with Richard Gere have become a big success. He has also written numerous scripts for movies and TV dramas. His novel “Auto-Reverse” is currently being developed for a film adaptation. His picture book “Makuro” was published last year and won an award.
93% on RottenTomatoes
“At its best, Perfect Days shares the same haunting sense of stillness that characterized Wenders’ best work in films such as The American Friend and Wings of Desire.” – Peter Rainer, Christian Science Monitor
“This is a philosophical contemplation that is very much about something – a meaning-of-life film, no less – with an introverted, immensely likeable central performance from Koji Yakusho.” – Jonathan Romney, Screen International