Niezamierzony skandal, nieświadoma transgresja: jak Zigomar stworzył japoński system cenzury filmowej

The paper is devoted to the sources and consequences of a scandal that occurred in 1910s’ Japan following the opening night of the French crime film series ˗ Zigomar. The starting point of the article is a synthetic introduction to the formula of French serialised films, especially those of criminal variety. What follows is a description of the Japanese opening night of the first part of Zigomar series, juxtaposing the distributor’s initial reluctance to exhibit the film with its unexpected commercial success. The next part of the article analyzes the sources of the scandal triggered by Zigomar’s popularity: the social aspect of cinema, the media storm unleashed by the Japanese press, and the idea of “popular education” promoted by the Japanese Government. Finally, the paper discusses the most important consequence of the scandal: the gradual emergence of a centralized and autonomous film censorship system. In conclusion, the impact of the Motion Picture Film Inspection Regulations on the Japanese movie industry is discussed.
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