審判 THE TRIAL A John Williams Film 原作:フランツ・カフカ審判 THE TRIAL A John Williams Film 原作:フランツ・カフカ

Tokyo Theatrical Release
June 30th for 3 weeks

Tsutomu Niwa
Rino TsuneishiJunichi TanabeYusaku Kudo
Shizuko KawakamiTomoko HayakawaMegumi SekineIchiro MurataIchi Omiya
Yajuro Bando (Special Guest Appearance)Takahashi ChoeiToru Shinagawa

Written and Directed by John WilliamsMusic : Slavek Kowalewski
Based on the novel “The Trial” by Franz Kafka
Produced by Sachie Takagi, Misako Furukawa, Shohei Shiozaki
DOP: Yoshinobu HayanoLighting: Reiji OkuboSound: Takeshi OgawaProduction Design: Sango NakamuraEditor: Miki InagawaSound Effects: Miyuki Horiuchi
Director's Supervisor: Masaki TakadaAssistant Directors: Yu IwasakiHair and Make Up Artists  Junko Nishio, Sachiko MatsumotoCostumes  Azuna SaitoProduction Management   Shunichi Takegami
Puppet Theatre: Yorie Akiba (Glasio Blue)
Supported by   Sophia University, Japanisch-Deutsche Gesellschaft
Produced and Distributed by 100 Meter Films


For event schedule such as stage greetings, please click here.


Franz Kafka’s classic novel reset in contemporary Tokyo.

Welsh/Japanese director John Williams transposes Kafka’s tale of paranoia, guilt and existential anxiety to modern day Japan. The project grew out of an actor’s workshop, which was performed as a play in 2015, then shot as a film with a completely different script in 2017 and completed in early 2018.

A darkly comic mystery meets absurdist satire of Japanese bureaucracy.

Kafka’s novel is perhaps more valid today than it ever was. In the so-called “post-truth” age the story of a man who wakes to find himself under arrest for an unspecified crime has a new resonance. The film preserves Kafka’s more universal existential themes, whilst also satirizing Japanese bureaucracy and political drift to the right.

The film stars in Tsutomu Niwa, who has worked with Williams before on two films and a raft of outstanding new talent, as well as well known faces, such as Toru Shinagawa and Choei Takahashi. Kabuki actor, Yajuro Bando makes a guest appearance in his first film role for 11 years.


Yosuke Kimura
Arrested on his 30th birthday
His crime: UNKNOWN

Present day Tokyo: Yosuke Kimura wakes up to find two men in his room. They tell him he is “under arrest” but even they do not know the charge. Kimura has to report to a strange court in the suburbs, but the ways of the court are absurd, and though he is “under arrest” Kimura is free to carry on his life as normal. As his case continues he finds that he has become very attractive to women, but they all seem to want something from him, though some of them claim that they know about his case and can help him. The more Kimura struggles to prove his innocence, the more the people around him treat him like a criminal. He begins to find answers in bizarre places: from his clients, from a strange puppeteer, from a Priest. But, little by little he begins to understand there is no exit from the labyrinth into which he is stumbling. All paths lead to some kind of punishment in the end.


Naohiro Ishihara Leon Ota Kurumo Hama Marina Niwa Keiji Yamashita Yasunori Henmi (Jitterbug) Sonoko Kameoka Mako Oyama Chuzan Yorie Aakiba Soushin Aki Yoshitaka Nishida Tao Nashimoto kingchild Kenji Isomura


Written and Directed by John Williams
Music: Slavek Kowalewski

Based on the novel “The Trial” by Franz Kafka

Produced by Sachie Takagi, Misako Furukawa, Shohei Shiozaki
DOP: Yoshinobu Hayano
Lighting: Reiji Okubo
Sound: Takeshi Ogawa
Production Design: Sango Nakamura
Editor: Miki Inagawa
Sound effects:Miyuki Horiuchi
Director's Supervisor: Masaki Takada
Chief Assistant Director: Yu Iwasaki
Hair and Make Up Artists:Junko Nishio, Yukiko Matsumoto
Costumes: Azuna Saito
Production Management: Shunichi Takegami


John Williams

John Williams is originally from the UK (from Wales) but has lived in Japan since 1988. He began making films on 8mm in Nagoya in the nineties, shot his first feature film in Nagoya, “Midnight Spin” in 1994, then wrote and directed his first theatrically released feature film, Firefly Dreams, which was released in 2001. This was followed by Starfish Hotel (Koichi Sato, Kimura Tae, Kiki) in 2007, Sado Tempest in 2013 and Shinpan. All of his films have won Best Feature awards at international film festivals. As well as directing he also produces features and shorts and documentaries by other directors. He teaches Film Production at Sophia University.

The novel that this film is based on is about a man who suddenly “wakes up” on his 30th birthday. I think Kafka chose the age of 30 very carefully – because the protagonist doesn’t just wake up. He has a kind of “awakening.” He looks around him and sees the world in a completely different way. Nothing makes sense any more. All his life, his work, his blind obedience to the rules of society and the world (in truth he has never broken the law) suddenly seem meaningless in face of the one appalling fact. He is “under arrest.” This is obviously a metaphor and the metaphor is blindingly clear. We are all “under arrest” so how shall we plead? How shall we justify our lives?

I chose to set it in Tokyo now, in a pretty much “real world” as if the dream reality has become the world we live in, and I hope that for the audience who see the film in Japan it will make them think about things that are happening in Japan and the world right now.

We all wake up everyday now to a new reality, in a world that is the same but different. Can we do anything about this world or do we just accept that it is very strange? If we do accept the strangeness are we “under arrest” too? If we start to question this strangeness what will happen to us? How free are we even to think the thoughts that question the strangeness of this world?

I hope the film works as a very small, shrill and persistent alarm clock, telling the audience to: Wake up!


Slavek Kowalewski

Slavomir Stanislaw Kowalewski (Slavek) is an award-winning Polish composer and pianist based in Tokyo. His work on major film and broadcast productions includes original scores for NHK, Fuji Television, TV Tokyo, and TBS networks, as well as Japan’s top pop act, AKB48, and covers a wide range of musical genre, ranging from full classical orchestral scores to Japanese traditional, piano solo, jazz, electronic, minimal, and avant-garde.
Slavek began playing piano at five, but his family’s move from Communist Poland to Western Germany when he was ten was the key factor in expanding his musical horizons beyond the conventional: Slavek played in bands (alternating guitar, drums, and bass), studied the sitar from Shalil Shankar, and produced punk albums, all while continuing to win prizes for his piano playing. On the strength of a single audition, he was accepted into the Conservatory van Amsterdam, where he received a rigorous education in classical music under the tutelage of the great pianist Håkon Austbø. Later, he went on to study counterpoint, orchestration, and scoring for film, from multiple-award-winning composer Jurre Haanstra.
Slavek’s original score for Edmund Yeo’s “Kingyo” was celebrated at the Venice Bianalle in 2009; and in 2013 the Brooklyn Film Festival honored him with the award for best score for his inventive work on the quirky sci-fi feature “Sado Tempest.” Both of these projects are ideal examples of Slavek’s skill at synthesizing cross-cultural hybrids, moving freely between classical and contemporary modes, and fusing organic and electronic textures. Slavek is repped in Japan by major agency Legato Music, and his productions and recordings exceed the highest international standards.
Slavek speaks fluent English, German, Polish, Japanese, French and Dutch.

Sebastian Mayer / AEIOU


Yorie Akiba

Yorie is a director and puppeteer working and living in Tokyo. Yorie was previously an Actor/ Assistant Director with the Rinkogun Theatre Company, with whom she collaborated from 2007-2010. She has received training at the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) in Sydney, Koike Hiroshi Performing Art Institute and Stella Adler Studio of Acting in New York. In 2011, Yorie founded Glasio Bluo in Brooklyn, New York. Yorie had received a grant from the Japanese Department of Cultural Affairs to study modern puppetry in theatre making.
In 2011, the company was re- launched in Tokyo, with an adapted performance of Oscar Wilde’s The Selfish Giant. Later that year, Tohoku earthquake hit the North-East of Japan and Glasio Bluo formed the “Tsunami Project”, to provide aid to the victims, run creative workshops and give performances. This project attracted new artists - musicians, dancers, visual artists and actors – to the company and its work and they toured to Palestine(West Bank), Thailand, Hiroshima and Iida with original puppet plays. She also designed puppets for Rinkogun’s “A woman’s life in 3 minutes” and Opera Konnyakuza’s "The Caucasian Chalk Circle” by Bertolt Brecht. She has also collaborated with London Bubble Theatre’s oral history play “Grandchildren of Hiroshima" and “After Hiroshima” as a co-director. Her latest puppet work is “Woman, Sherman” premiered in Hiroshima in 2017.