Biography/ Filmography

Photo: Connie Kurtew ©2017

Biography:

毎年ドイツ、フランクフルトにて開催される、世界最大の日本映画専門の映画祭「ニッポン・コネクション」にて下記の受賞歴有り

2013年 作品「A2-B-C」にて「ニッポン・ビジョン賞」(審査員の選考による新人賞)受賞
2015年 作品「-1287」にて観客賞「ニッポン・ビジョンズ賞」受賞
2019年 作品「おみおくり~Sending Off~」にて、今年初めての導入となった観客賞「ニッポン・ドックス賞」受賞

これまで4本の長編ドキュメンタリー作品を日本で作成。その内2本は、福島の原子力発電所に関するものである。また「売買ボーイズ」という男性のセックスワーカーを扱った作品についてはプロデューサーとして携わった。これら全ての作品が、世界中の各映画祭において上映され、いくつもの賞を受賞してきた。

また、東京大学で非常勤講師として学生たちに撮影、編集することの楽しさや苦労を教える傍、NHK worldにて医療に関するドキュメンタリーを作成するなど、その活躍は多岐に渡る。

Born in America, Ian Thomas Ash earned an MA in Film and Television Production at the University of Bristol, UK, in 2005. His first feature documentary, ‘the ballad of vicki and jake’ (2006), received the Prix du Canton Vaud prize at the 2006 Visions du Reél International Documentary Film Festival in Nyon, Switzerland. Ian’s two feature documentaries about children living in areas of Fukushima contaminated by the 2011 nuclear meltdown, ‘In the Grey Zone‘ (2012) and ‘A2-B-C‘ (2013), have screened at festivals around the world where they have also received multiple awards.

His documentaries that followed also dealt with themes surrounding health and medicine in Japan, starting with ‘-1287‘ (2014) which received numerous awards, including the Audience Award for Best Feature at the 2015 Nippon Connection Film Festival in Germany and the First Prize in the Asian Competition at the 2015 DMZ Docs Film Festival in Korea.  “Dying at Home” (2016) and “Suturing Cultures” (2017), both commissions from NHK World, are on opposite end of the spectrum: one is about end-of-life care, while the other is about the future doctors of Japan.

Boys for Sale” (2017, dir. Itako), a documentary about male sex workers in Tokyo on which Ian served as Executive Producer, screened in 40 film festivals across the world, receiving six awards for Best Feature Documentary.

Ian has lived in Japan for a total of 16 years and has recently completed two documentaries: the feature-length version of his film about end-of-life care in a small village in rural Japan called “おみおくり〜Sending Off〜“, which received the Audience Award at its World Premier in Germany in May 2019, and a short called “The Father’s Love Begotten” about the sexual abuse of a young boy which also received the Audience Award at its World Premier in Holland in April 2019.

Awards:

Nippon Docs Award (Audience Award for Best Documentary)
at the 2019 Nippon Connection Film Festival for「おみおくり〜Sending Off〜」(2019)

Public’s Choice (Audience) Award
at the 2019 Leiden International Short Film Experience for “The Father’s Love Begotten”「父なる愛生せば」(2019)

Award for Best Feature Film
at the 2018 Nachtschatten Film Festival (Germany) for ‘Boys for Sale’ (2017)

Award for Best Feature Documentary
at the 2018 KASHISH Mumbai Int Queer FF (India) for ‘Boys for Sale’ (2017)

Award for Best LGBTQ Feature
at the 2018 Oxford Film Festival (USA) for ‘Boys for Sale’ (2017)

Award for Best Feature Documentary
at the 2017 El Lugar Sin Limites (Ecuador) for ‘Boys for Sale’ (2017)

Award for Best Feature Documentary
at the 2017 Queer Film Festival Playa del Carmen (Mexico) for ‘Boys for Sale’ (2017)

Award for Best Documentary
at the 2017 DGLFF (South Africa) for ‘Boys for Sale’ (2017)

Fox Inclusion Award
at the 2017 Outfest Film Festival (USA) for ‘Boys for Sale’ (2017)

Best Documentary
at the 2016 SoCal Film Festival (USA) for ‘-1287’ (2014)

People’s Choice (audience) Award
at the 2015 Lake Champlain International Film Festival (USA) for ‘-1287’ (2014)

First Prize in the Asian Competition
at the 2015 DMZ Docs Film Festival (Korea) for ‘-1287’ (2014)

Audience Award for Best Feature Film
at the 2015 Nippon Connection Film Festival (Germany) for ‘-1287’ (2014)

Golden Honey Comb for Outstanding Work in Film
at the 2014 Lake Champlain International Film Festival (USA) for ‘In the Grey Zone’ (2012) and ‘A2-B-C’ (2013)

Special Recognition
at the 2014 Uranium Film Festival (Brazil) for ‘A2-B-C’ (2013)

Award for Best Documentary
at the 2013 STEPS Rights Film Festival (Ukraine) for ‘A2-B-C’ (2013)

Best of Festival Award
at the 2013 Guam International Film Festival (USA) for ‘A2-B-C’ (2013)

Nippon Visions Award (best film by new-coming Japan-based director)
at the 2013 Nippon Connection Japanese Film Festival (Germany) for ‘A2-B-C’ (2013)

Audience Choice Award First Prize for Best Documentary
at the 2012 Rhode Island International Film Festival (USA) for “In the Grey Zone” (2012)

Filmmaker of the Future Award
at the 2012 Rhode Island International Film Festival (USA)

Prix de Canton Vaud (best first film)
at the 2006 Visions du Reél International Documentary Film Festival (Nyon, Switzerland) for “the ballad of vicki and jake” (2006)

Filmography:

おみおくり〜Sending Off〜, 77 min/ Japan/ 2019
When the time comes, the villagers gather to send off their dead.

父なる愛生せば (The Father’s Love Begotten), 17 min/ Japan/ 2019
A young man struggles with the effects of abuse he suffered as a child.

売買ボーイズ (Boys for Sale), 76 min/ Japan (dir: Itako, prod: Ian)/ 2017
Boys are selling sex in Japan. Who is buying?

Suturing Cultures, 28 min/ Japan (NHK World)/ 2017
Japan’s future doctors navigate culture, religion and sexual orientation…in English.

Dying at Home, 28 min/ Japan (NHK World)/ 2016
Dr. Konta is on a quest to help people who wish to die at home rather than in hospital.

-1287, 70 min/ US & Japan/ 2014
As she nears the end of life, Kazuko’s observations on love, money, marriage and her own death change, as does her relationship with the filmmaker.

A2-B-C, 71 min/ Japan/ 2013
Eighteen months after the nuclear meltdown in Fukushima, children who were not evacuated are found to have thyroid cysts and nodules.

グレー・ゾーンの中 (In the Grey Zone),89 min/ Japan/ 2012
The children of Minamisoma City, Fukushima, living inside the radiation zone head back to school after the nuclear meltdown.

Jake, not finished yet, 81 min/ Japan & UK/ 2010
The story of two mothers and two sons whose chance meeting seven years earlier changes their lives forever.

the ballad of vicki and jake, 84 min/ UK/ 2006
A family struggles with drug abuse, homelessness and their relationship with the filmmaker.