The Sapporo Project

5 minutes, Black and White, HD



The Sapporo Project is a poetic homage to the work of acclaimed Japanese calligrapher Gazanbou Higuchi. A unique glimpse into the world of Japanese calligraphy, this animated film explores the creative process of a master. By animating his very own art, the viewer is transported into the imagination of a legendary figure in contemporary calligraphy.

This poetic homage to calligrapher Gazanbou Higuchi utilizes Marie-Josée Saint-Pierre’s signature style of rotoscope animation to illustrate the craft of Japanese shodo. Energetic brush strokes pulsate into moving forms, connecting the artist to his work in a seamless flow. Morphing minimalist black and white compositions fulfill Higuchi’s mission to convey the dance and rhythm of life – Alex Rogalski, Short Cuts Canada, Toronto International Film Festival 2010

Director’s Statement

The Sapporo Project was made during a three month artist residency in Sapporo, Japan.  I have always dreamed of making a film that would explore the art of Japanese calligraphy.  Gazanbou Higuchi accepted to be the subject of my film.  His figurative work his brought to life and takes us to the heart of Japanese Shodo art to convey the dance and the rhythm of life..

Recent News

The Sapporo Project enters the film festival circuit

The Sapporo Project enters the film festival circuit: Toronto International Film Festival, Atlantic Film Festival, Vancouver International Film Festival, Festival du Nouveau Cinéma, Sapporo International Shortfest and Asolo Art Film Festival.

MJSTP Film’s upcoming screenings!

Four of our films are screening in the upcoming weeks:

Post-Partum (2004) will be screened on November 18th at the J.A De Sève Cinema at Concordia University in Montreal at 7 p.m. The film is presented in collaboration with the Festival Nouveau Cinema and the Mel Hoppenheim School…

10th Montreal’s Summit of Animation

Montreal’s Summit of Animation is celebrating it’s 10th anniversary this year. This festival, created by the Cinémathèque Québécoise, is the most importation manifestation of animation in Québec.
Les Sommets du cinéma d’animation de Montréal

The Sapporo Project will be…

Team and Credits

  • Director, Producer and Scriptwriter
  • Marie-Josée Saint-Pierre
  • Drawings and Animation
  • Brigitte Archambault
  • Photography
  • Akihito Yamamoto
  • Hare-Bare SHA SHINN
  • Editing and Special Effects
  • Kara Blake
  • Narration
  • Gazanbou Higuchi
  • Music
  • OKI
  • Interpreter
  • Fuyuka Shindo
  • Technical Support
  • Takashi Homma
  • Sound Design
  • Martin Allard


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Film Images

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MJSTP Films Inc would like to thank Gazanbou Higuchi for his precious collaboration in the making of this film.