An Interview with Miyake Sho (Director)
Filmmaking That’s Fun and Cool
Q: You filmed OMSB and his team’s music production process almost entirely from a fixed frontal camera. Did you have that face-off framing in mind before you started shooting?
MS: Initially there was just one shot I knew I wanted to get, and it was not the frontal one. It’s the shot you see in the first half of the film, where the camera from the side captures OMSB’s bodily movement as he’s hitting on the MPC. I adjusted the lighting and prepared to film on 4:3 standard aspect ratio in order to capture that shot. But to tell the truth, I wasn’t yet sure how to film the room itself—whether to shoot from behind or from the front. While we were shooting, I kept looking through the side camera all the time and hardly checked the frontal one. Only when we took the footage home and looked at the frontal footage, I realized that everything was there.
Q: As an artist yourself, were you inspired by the protagonists?
MS: Editing at home, I sat for hours in front of my computer watching OMSB create music. I was not enthusiastic about it because I don’t like editing on the computer. But because I liked their music, I kept watching the footage endlessly. And then finally I noticed how they were totally focused for long hours, working without rest. I began to feel like I was looking at a mirror, and started to mimic their movements. I shook my head, and hit my keyboard. Eventually I recognized that he was working seriously and I had to, too. But since he was also enjoying himself, I should, too. I was able to edit with a really positive attitude—it was like I was following him at his back.
Q: I was impressed to see how OMSB would keep redoing his work every time something didn’t turn out right.
MS: That’s probably because I myself was so impressed by that attitude of his, on location and also in the editing room. With current technology you can always cut out parts that you didn’t get right and digitally edit together what you like. But when OMSB makes a mistake, he goes back to scratch—I felt that was so correct. Not to say that a certain style can be judged right or wrong. When I attended the rehearsal of a gig commemorating his new album, I saw how he went through, from beginning to end, every single track he was going to play in the two to three hour performance. That was so absolutely cool. Some might say it’s an inefficient way of doing things, but I thought it was the right decision.
Q: Tell us about that closeup shot of OMSB’s face just before the end credits.
MS: I struggled with how to end the film. That shot was him listening to the playback of the tracks he had recorded, and I really love the expression on his face. All the footage until that point has synchronized sound, but there the sound is separated for the first time. This jump makes this a very special shot. Making music is about putting the sound out there, but it’s also about listening. You listen, and then you move ahead. You stop to check where you were a moment ago and then you move forward again. So the film gives you this feeling of the creative process moving you forward, until that shot when he stops to listen.
(Compiled by Inagaki Haruka)
Interviewers: Inagaki Haruka, Yamane Hiroyuki / Translator: Fujioka Asako
Photography: Yamane Hiroyuki / Video: Yamane Hiroyuki / 2015-10-02 in Tokyo