Trailer Screening and Discussion with Film director Minami Goto about her recent movie “Blue Imagine”

The lecture by film director Minami Goto (University of Tokyo OG) was held online on January 22, 2024 (US Eastern Time) (January 23, Japan Time). Friends of UTokyo organized this event, supported by Satsukikai America, NY Icho-kai, Chicago Akamonkai, FUTI Alumni Association, and others. The gathering was a great success, with over 30 participants from the United States and Japan.

Ms. Goto was a student at Columbia University Graduate School of Film, from which she graduated in 2018 with scholarship support from FUTI. Since her graduation, she has worked on international collaborative film productions while based in Japan. The feature film “Blue Imagine,” written and co-produced by Minami Goto, was selected for the Bright Future section of the 53rd Rotterdam International Film Festival, a prestigious film festival, and was officially screened as its world premiere. Although the film was shot entirely in Japan, it is an international co-production involving a Filipino cast and a Philippine-Singaporean production company. She believes that what she learned in New York was put to good use in this film.

Japanese version press release is at:

and the Link about the film:

The story is set in a shared house where victims of sexual violence and harassment live together. It depicts a traumatized protagonist trying to recover through supportive dialogue and interaction with those around her. [The movie has been released in theaters in Japan from March, 2024.]

In addition to screening the trailer, Ms. Goto shared with the participants behind-the-scenes stories about film production as well as her expectations about future opportunities. We received many comments from the participants, such as “I gained a good understanding of the life cycle of film production and the difficulty of coordinating a film team as a producer.”

At the Q&A session following Ms. Goto’s presentation, a lively exchange of opinions took place. Below are some examples of questions and answers.


How did you come to work on the theme explored in the film, “Blue Imagine”? 


I started from my own awareness of the problem and from something close to home. The challenge was how to develop the concept into a viable form of entertainment.

(Participant) Please tell us about your experience at Columbia University Film School.


Film school students come from all walks of life. One of the characteristics of the School’s student body is its international diversity. Among the 60 to 70 students in my program, 25 countries were represented. There were also many students who were not from the film industry. I am glad I learned that the structure and culture of the film industry vary greatly depending on the country, and that there is often no right answer to the questions we encounter.


What is the relationship between your experience in New York and “Blue Imagine”? 


I was in New York during the #MeToo movement. I reflected in the film what I talked about with my classmates at that time and what I felt when I saw the situation in Japan while I was in America.


How did you write the credible screenplay with such diverse characters? 


For example, I consulted a friend from a law school about the lawyer character’s lines. In order to understand the Filipino characters, I did research and interviewed Filipino individuals married to Japanese.

Finally, Mr. Yuki Haba, President of the FUTI Alumni Association, gave closing remarks and commented, “Seeing the success of FUTI award recipients like Ms. Goto, who are active around the world, is an encouragement to FUTI alumni.” In addition, a FUTI board member participating in the gathering commented, “Because there are few people who aim to study the arts at the University of Tokyo, Ms. Goto’s scholarship application essay, which revealed her passion for making films, left a strong impression on FUTI Scholarship Committee members. I am very happy to see that she is doing well.” Many participants stayed for the social gathering that followed the presentation,  continuing the lively discussion.

Ms. Goto’s Brief Bio:


2015 Graduated from Department of Literature, The University of Tokyo (History and Civilization)

2015 Entered the Sogo Bunka Kenkyu-ka, University of Tokyo (Interdisciplinary Culture Studies) (Transferred to Columbia)

2015      Started at Columbia University in the City of New York, School of the Arts  

2018      Graduated from Columbia University in the City of New York, School of the Arts Awards

Jack Larson Award for Collaboration – Short Film Project Kiko 

avex digital AWARD – Short Film Project Breakers 

Photo credit: From the official site of “Blue Imagine“