Message from the Director (on Extension of NFAJ’s Closure)
From Hisashi Okajima, Director of NFAJ, to Everyone
I offer my deepest condolences to those who have lost their lives due to the new coronavirus (COVID-19) and my heart goes out to their families and loved ones. I am praying for the quick recovery of those currently suffering from the virus, and would like to express my utmost respect and gratitude to the healthcare workers and everyone else who are fighting this unknown enemy day and night.
As announced earlier, the National Film Archive of Japan is undergoing maintenance including partial renovation of our Kyobashi Main Building, which will consequently be closed to the public from March 9 to May 28. In addition to the above, and in accordance with the government’s requests for self-restraint under the current state of emergency, NFAJ has for the time being closed all of its facilities (including the Sagamihara Conservation Center) in order to limit the spread of the virus and to assure the safety of all of you as well as our employees.
This state of affairs has led to the cancellation or postponement of some of our in-house screenings and exhibitions, and also various events NFAJ was co-organizing with other organizations in and outside Japan — we sincerely apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused you and hope you will understand that the ongoing state of emergency left us with no alternatives.
After the declaration of a state of emergency, the situation was further complicated as the renovation work that had been ongoing from March was suspended. NFAJ is still trying to work out a solution with the construction company and other involved parties, but as completing the work on schedule is no longer possible, we were left with no other option but to extend the period of closure. Consequently, we were forced, with heavy hearts, to cancel ‘EU Film Days 2020’, the inaugural event of fiscal year 2020. We are also pushing back the dates of the exhibition ‘Shochiku Cinema at 100’.
While everyone at NFAJ is taking the government’s requests for self-restraint very seriously, we are also doing our best to carefully prepare for the eventual reopening of the Kyobashi Main Building and the Sagamihara Conservation Center.
We pray for a quick resolution to the coronavirus pandemic all around the world, hoping that everyone out there, including all those involved in film and film culture, can return to life as usual in the near future. We would also like to thank all of you for your understanding regarding our extended closure, and hope that you are looking forward to our reopening as much as we are.
Hisashi Okajima, Director of National Film Archive of Japan
※Please see the following announcements for more information regarding the closure.