Born in 1945, Hara Kazuo was influenced as a young man by the protest movements that took place throughout Japan and the world in the late 1960s and 70s. He founded Shisso Productions in 1971 with his wife, producer, and primary collaborator Sachiko Kobayashi. He has published five documentary films thus far, including the award-winning The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On, widely recognized as most important and influential documentary ever made in Japan, Goodbye CP, Extreme Private Eros: Love Song 1974, and A Dedicated Life.
“Kazuo Hara is one of the undiscovered geniuses of documentary. I first saw The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On at the San Francisco Film Festival. Werner Herzog and I were sitting together. We couldn’t believe it. Here was one of the weirdest, most dramatic stories ever. And the movie itself? What can I say? It’s on my list of the 10 best movies ever. You have all these layers: the underlying historical reality, the obsessed and crazed Mr. Okuzaki pursuing that historical reality despite all odds, and the obsessed and quite possibly crazed filmmaker pursuing Mr. Okuzaki. Here is the story of the film and the man behind it. A compelling narrative and journey.”
— Errol Morris
“It was as though I had this soul brother in Japan … To have a kindred spirit, to have someone who has inspired me very early on … I felt after watching [The Emperor’s Naked Army Marches On] that I had permission to make Roger & Me the way I was making it.”
— Michael Moore