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Director killed by terrorist lives on through 3/11 victims’ film via The Asahi Shimbun

The resilience of victims of the 2011 nuclear disaster inspired a Belgian sound engineer to direct his own film on them, but his chance to finish the documentary was stolen by a terrorist.

Gilles Laurent shot “La Terre Abandonnee” (Abandoned Land) in Fukushima Prefecture while he lived in Japan, and the film, which was completed posthumously, is now on show here. Sadly, the director is no longer with us, as he perished at age 46 in one of the terrorist attacks in Brussels on March 22, 2016.


Following the nuclear disaster, the central government issued an evacuation order to Minami-Soma’s Odaka district, where Sato lives. Sato met Laurent while she was preparing to return to her home.

“Media organizations overseas often report on areas of Fukushima Prefecture that are empty of people, but I want people to also learn about disaster survivors who are trying to be positive,” she said she told Laurent when she talked to him.

Laurent then asked to interview Sato. He went on to film her and her husband as they returned to their hometown to visit their family grave and had a gathering with friends at their home for the first time in quite a while.




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