The Filming Location of That Movie?! Movies That Were Filmed in Otaru
The greatest appeal of Hokkaido has to be its magnificent natural landscapes and beautiful winter views. Hokkaido is a popular tourist location even within Japan, and is a dream location for people living in Asian countries where there is no snowfall. As there are many views that can only be seen here, Hokkaido is often chosen as the filming location for movies and dramas. Of the many filming spots in Hokkaido, Otaru, a nature-rich city with a beautiful cityscape, in particular, has been the setting of many great films.
For example, the setting of the beginning of the movie “NANA” was the busy Hanazono area near JR Otaru Station. The film, based on a Japanese manga, was a smash hit in Hong Kong. Otaru also appears in an important scene of the movie “The Detective Is in The Bar,” starring Hokkaido-born Yo Oizumi. The actor is popular in other Asian countries as well. “LOVE LETTER,” starring Miho Nakayama and Etsushi Toyokawa, and directed by Shunji Iwai, was released in Japan and then other Asian countries and became extremely popular. Thanks to this film shot in Otaru, an Otaru craze swept across fans in Asia, and many of them visited Otaru in order to see the filming locations that appeared in the movie.
Also, a Thai film called “Fan Day” was released in 2016. The movie is a romance film about an ordinary office worker who is in love with his coworker. When the girl loses her memory for a day, he pretends to be her boyfriend. When the girl suffers temporary memory loss, the two were on a company retreat to Hokkaido. Many sightseeing spots of Hokkaido, including Otaru, appear in the film. Along with the hit of the movie, a Hokkaido and Otaru craze has hit Thailand.
Since the Thai were exempted of the need for a visa for visiting Japan in 2013, a Japan-visiting trend has swept Thailand. And of course, Hokkaido, which offers snowscapes that cannot be seen in Thailand, was bound to become popular. As if to boost such a Hokkaido craze, the hit of “One Day” will probably keep the popularity of Hokkaido high for a while. Otaru also appears in the Taiwanese television drama “I Love U Love U Love I.” It is a romance story about a Taiwanese woman who comes to work at a resort in Hokkaido to get over some love trouble. Many tourist spots and beautiful snowscapes of Otaru, Rusutsu, and Sapporo appear in the series.
Otaru is highly popular among tourists from both within the country and without, for its old but beautiful cityscape, the Otaru Canal, its delicious seafood, and romantic snowscapes in the winter. How about strolling the city of Otaru while thinking about the many famous films that were born here?