A story that transcends time to be passed on to future generations. —
The curtain will fall on (nearly) 80 years of Tsukiji Market history.
A true wonderland in the culinarily world of Japanese cuisine.
The Tsukiji market has been the heart of “Washoku” as the market and its surrounding areas sustained Japanese traditional food till this day.
At this critical juncture in history for the market, we present to you a film that reveals what Tsukiji stands for and why it will always have a treasured place in Japan’s history.
The intensity and scale of the business makes it difficult for any media to have full access to the entire market. This was for the first time the Market granted permission for an unrestricted filming over an extended period of time.
A variety of fish and market’s scenery that changes as season passes.
Deep trust and relationship that manifest in daily conversation among professionals. People who work tirelessly and vigorously to the level where you almost hear their heartbeating….
The film reveals the true Tsukiji that you’ve never seen before and gives you an in-depth look at the tradition, craftsmanship and passion that has nurtured Tsukiji to make it what it is today.
Nakaoroshi – Intermediate wholesalers
Jiro OnoSukiyabashi Jiro
Keiji NakazawaSushi Sho
Takashi SaitoSushi Saito
Kazuo NagayamaDaisan Harumi Sushi
Tetsuya SoutomeMikawa Zezankyo
Toru OkudaGinza Koju
Rokusaburo MichibaGinza Rokusanntei
Tsurizao MoritaFishmonger, Izugin
Hidejiro KandaFishmonger, Kanda-ya
Theodore C. BestorSocial Cultural Anthropologist, Harvard University Proffesor
Masuhiro YamamotoFood Critic
Yukio HattoriHattori Nutrition College’s President
Yumiko InukaiFood Journalist
Nobuko IwamuraJapanese Culinary Historian
《The market is a living thing. It is given a new form with each day by the throngs of workers and shoppers, that great mass of humanity.》The theme of this film goes beyond just recording the daily goings-on of a market. The film had to be about the passion and the pride of the people that work there. We had to capture the very air that they breathed. Tsukiji operates as part of a very complex system. In order to capture the essence of the place, we had to sort through a massive amount of information. More than anything, we wanted to keep the film focused on people, not relying on narration, but on the voices of those who make the market what it is. Nakaoroshi, the intermediate wholesalers who work at the market were placed at center stage, with the viewpoints of the chefs and cultural personalities added to give an overhead view. On a more concrete level, we also wanted the film to make people “want to eat fish”.
We could talk forever about how hard it was to do the filming. We often went 24 hours without sleep, filming from late at night until the following evening. Tsukiji is a very big place, and we would have to walk the whole grounds from end to end carrying all of our equipment. It wasn’t out of the question to walk 50,000 steps a day, a distance of over 35 kilometers. We made our staff as small as possible to be able to film inside the small shops. Especially difficult was capturing the various daily occurrences of the market, which at first glance seem chaotic, but everyone seems to know their place and purpose. Nothing seems planned, but everything moves as if it was. We were often not able to film at the right time, and sometimes, due to the weather, there was no catch to film. Things frequently did not go according to plan. There was always a feeling of tension knowing that “the things happening in front of us, weren’t going to happen again for a second take.” The videographers put their soul into capturing the moment in each take. Chance encounters often became chances to film. We often met chefs by chance in the market, and talk would eventually lead to taking footage. Many people who normally refuse to allow the media into their establishments consented to our filming if it was “for Tsukiji”. These encounters especially left us with a feeling of how integral Tsukiji was to these people’s lives.
As we were gathering more and more information for the film, we discovered that there was rare footage of the market taken 80 years ago. We wanted very much to use it to tell some of the history of Tsukiji in our film. We decided to restore the film and convert it to a digital format. It was a gamble as we didn’t know what was in it. The result was amazing. In the film was not a recording of the construction site that would later become Tsukiji, but the magnificent completion ceremony and massive grand opening. All of this mysteriously occurred in the same year that the exact time that Tsukiji would be relocated was announced. The director muttered, “It’s almost as if the film had called us to witness the birth of Tsukiji.”
16months from March 2014 to June 2015
*Serious efforts of taking raw footage began in May 2014. Additional footage was taken at the first auction of the year in January 2014, on October 23rd and November 9th, 2015.
【Total Hours of Film】
【Total Days Filming】
143 Days (103 days inside the market/48 days outside the market)
*On some days, footage was taken both inside and outside of the market.
【Number of People Interviewed】
Middle Traders: 81people（at 64 shops）
Workers in the market that are not middle traders: 12people
Others: 60 people
《Basic facts about the Tsukiji Market
Futakuchi Niro Keisuke
MAL Tokyo 有志一同
Niwayutaka Niwa Yutaka
おおとも めいこ さゆこ まおこ
小野 隼平 倫平
学校法人草苑学園 理事長 柳内 光子
漁港 森田 釣竿・深海 光一
“合同会社五穀豊穣 代表 西居 豊”
社会福祉法人 江戸川豊生会 理事長 柳内光子
初音屋 成田 九郎之助
弁護士 岸本 洋子
森 素明、森 良子