A decade after her grandmother’s death, award-winning USC writer/director/producer Mitsuyo Miyazaki went home to Japan to celebrate the tenth anniversary of her grandmother’s passing. While there, she stumbled upon a box of her grandmother’s old photos, a collection that her family had never seen before. Pairing her grandmother’s penchant for short hair and baggy jeans (in an otherwise obsessively feminine culture) with the unmistakable lovers’ gaze she noted in a photo of her grandmother and another woman, Miyazaki wrote a script to offer her grandmother the freedom she never had in Japan. Tsuyako is Miyazaki’s thesis project, a feature film shot on location in her hometown of Osaka. From her Kickstarter project description:
In Post-War Japan, Tsuyako lives a demanding life as a mill factory worker, obedient wife, and loving mother. When a past lover, Yoshie, pays a surprise visit, she reignites a passion in Tsuyako — one that she had kept hidden since their separation. After Yoshie witnesses how Tsuayko’s new family mistreats her, she begs Tsuyako to join her in her travels to Tokyo, where they would be able to live the life that they had always dreamt of, together. Tsuyako must choose between her duties as a woman and the promise of freedom, while struggling to maintain the Japanese traditions of culture and family.
An incredibly moving and personal story paired with a stunning trailer, Tsuyako is an inspiring Kickstarter project and will no doubt be a breathtaking film. The project ends Sunday, May 8th. You can learn more about Miyazaki’s story and support the film here.