The Asahi Shimbun (Evening paper) March 22 (Wednesday), 2017
The aspiration that fell down by terrorism
Still exists in the film “Fukushima”
Just one year after the Belgian Accident, the Director’s posthumous work is now being released
One year passed since March 22 from the double terrorism attacks that happened last year in Belgium. The documentary film which the late Mr. Gilles Laurent (46 at that time), one of the victims, shot in Fukushima Prefecture after the nuclear power plant accident, when he was living in Japan, is now being opened to the public. The performers and the families of the deceased desire that many people would look sincerly at their proof of lives.
About 370 people were killed or wounded due to the acts of terrorism at the airport and in the subway. The late Mr. Laurent who was nearby the criminal who blew himself up passed away in the subway on his way to the studio in order to edit his film.
“I couldn’t imagine Mr. Laurent to be attacked by terrorism.” says Mrs. Toshiko Sato who lives and appears on the scene, in Minamisoma City, Fukushima Prefecture. She met him while she happened to be there as an interpretation guide.
Mr. Laurent was originally a sound engineer. He was blessed with two daughters whose mother is a Japanese, Mrs. Reiko Udo, and came to Japan in 2013. He became to know the strength of the people in Fukushima who are rooted deeply in their land, even after the nuclear power plant disaster, and made up his mind to film the scenes as a director.
Toward Kodaka-Ward of the above City where Mrs. Satoh lives, after the nuclear power plant accident, the Japanese government issued the instructions to evacuate. It was at the very time when she was preparing to come back to her own house that she met Mr. Laurent. “Oversea media often take up the situation about Fukushima where nobody is there. But I think they have to know that there are also people who are looking straight forward.” She conveyed her thought like this to Mr. Laurent, just standing “chatting together”. Then she was asked of, “Please let me collect the data.” by him.
Mr. Laurent aimed the camera at the scene of Mr. and Mrs. Sato, who came back to visit their grave and later they gathered together with their friends first time in a long while. Mrs. Sato says looking back at the time. “He never insisted on anything loudly, but he surely wanted to convey the Fukushima’s present state with his strong will.” After Mr. Laurent’s death, his filming staff took over the editing and completed the film “LA TERRE ABANDONNÉE”.
“Gilles was an existence like the sun.” says Alice (42) who is a younger sister of Mr. Laurent living in Belgium. And she feels that her sadness over her brother’s death will be similar to sorrow of the victims of nuclear power plant accident. Mr. Laurent’s elder sister, Sylvie (52) desires from her heart, “I can feel Gilles’ gentle gaze from the film’s scenes. He loved Nature so much. I hope that lots of Japanese people would also watch the film.”
The film is now being screened at the Theater Image Forum located in Shibuya-Ward, Tokyo Metropolis. And it’s to be continuously opened nationwide one after another.
・The upper-side photo: Mr. Gilles Laurent filming in Fukushima Prefecture. Offered by Mrs. Reiko Udo.
・The lower-side photo: One scene in the film.
・The lowest part of photo: Mrs. Toshiko Sato, and her husband Mr. Tamotsu Sato, talking about Gilles’ memories.