REPORT2019.04.21Stars Shine on 11th OIMF Red Carpet

The fourth and final day of the 11th Okinawan International Movie Festival on Sunday April 21 featured a red carpet event, where movie fans could not only see their favorite stars, but even get autographs and take selfies together.

Thousands of fans began packing both sides of Naha’s historic Kokusai-dori (“International Street”) in the morning. At noon, a convertible Range Rover began carry stars to the red carpet that stretched from Mutsumibashi Intersection down to Tenbusu Plaza.

In addition to countless entertainers, there were representatives of the festival's sponsors, such as convenience store chain Family Mart, which drew laughs from the crowd with mascots that bounced down the street dressed as the fried chicken and French fries sold at its stores. There were also groups showing support for many of the 41 different cities, town and village of Okinawa, as well as other regions of Japan. There were also foreign guests promoting tourism to Thailand and other countries in Asia.

The crowd went wild when members of the idol group NMB48 appeared on the runway. There was also an appearance by a different idol group, Yoshimotozaka46, which includes Yoshimoto comedians among its members. Yoshiko and Yuriyan Retriever made time to sign one autograph after another and took selfies with happy fans.

There were teams representing many of the films in the festival. Popular comedian Gori, who became a film director in recent years, had two of his short films screened at this year’s festival. He happily stopped to talk to his many eager fans along the red carpet. Actress Rio Uchida who appears in “A Shitty Film” was asked by many fans to take selfies together.

Finally, there was an appearance by Hiroshi Osaki, Chairman and CEO of Yoshimoto Kogyo Co., Ltd., which organizes the festival, and Naha Mayor Mikiko Shiroma, who thanked everyone for their cooperation over the four days of the festival.

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