Naomi Kawase (Japan)

Naomi Kawase (born 1969 in Nara, Japan) is a Japanese film director. She was also known as Naomi Sento with her then-husband's surname. Many of her works have been documentaries, including Embracing/ Ni tsutsumarete, about her search for the father who abandoned her as a child, and Katatsumori, about the grandmother who raised her. After graduating from the Osaka School of Photography (then the School of Visual Arts) in 1989, she spent an additional four years there as a lecturer before releasing Embracing. She became the youngest winner of la Caméra d'Or award (the award for the best new director) at the 1997 Cannes Film Festival for her first 35mm film Moe no Suzaku. She novelized her films Moe no Suzaku and Firefly. She won the Grand Prix of the 2007 Cannes Film Festival for her fourth full-length film The Mourning Forest/ Mogari no Mori.


  • Ni tsutsumarete/ Embracing
    40´, Japan, 1992
  • Katatsumori
    Japan, 1994
  • Ten, mitake/ See Heaven
    10´, Japan, 1995
  • Hotaru/ Firefly
    164´, Japan, 2000
  • Kya ka ra ba a/ Sky, Wind, Fire, Water, Earth
    50´, Japan, 2001
  • Tsuioku no dansu/ Letter from a Yellow Cherry Blossom
    65´, Japan, 2003
  • Sharasojyu/ Shara
    100´, Japan, 2003
  • Tarachime/ Naissance et maternité
    32´, Japan/France, 2006
  • Mogari no mori/ The Mourning Forest
    97´, Japan/France, 2007
  • Nanayomachi
    90´, Japan/France, 2008
  • In Between Days - with Isaki Lacuesta
    40´, Japan/Spain, 2009
  • Koma (34´, South Korea, 2009) - segment of Visitors
  • Genpin
    92', Japan, 2010
  • Hanezu
    91', Japan, 2011
  • 3.11 Sense of Home
    75', Japan, 2011
  • 60 Seconds of Solitude in Year Zero
    60', Estonia, 2011
  • Chiri
    45', Japan, 2012

Doc Alliance Members

Doc Alliance is a creative partnership of 7 key European documentary film festivals. Our aim is to advance the documentary genre, support its diversity and promote quality creative documentary films.