Ignatius Rake wins Kaminari Japan Best Music Video Award
SHES SO SPECTOR-ESQUE STILL The lovestruck astronaut arrives.
Cornish animator Ignatius Rake grabs film festival gold in Tokyo with interstellar tribute to 60s singer Ronnie Spector.

Kawagoe, 7 June, 2024: Cornwall, UK-based animator Ignatius Rake has won more honours in Japan, landing the Best Music Video Award at the 2024 Kaminari Japan Film Festival. Staged at the Theatre Guild in Tokyo’s trendy Shibuya district this past June 3, the festival saw filmmakers and animators from 30 different countries around the world, including Korea, Canada and the United States, all vying for one of its coveted indie filmmaking accolades.

Ignatius won his gong for the animated music video he made for ‘She’s So Spector-Esque’, a retro-soul song by UK ska and soul stalwart Andy Keys Clark. With a runtime of 4 minutes 32 seconds, the video is an epic interstellar tribute to 60s singer and icon Ronnie Spector and follows the story of a lovestruck astronaut as he travels across the cosmos to reunite with his enigmatic alien lover.

SHES SO SPECTOR-ESQUE STILL The lovestruck astronaut in space.
Mission of love: The lovestruck astronaut leaving the Solar System.

Space Race rocketry

Using authentic 60s imagery, ranging from Natalie Woods’ hair and Gordon Cooper’s space suit to dresses from the Rhode Island School of Design’s fashion collection, the video blends Space Race rocketry and aesthetics with Ignatius’ own unique style of digital collage animation that has so far seen him scooping 26 different awards and laurels at film festivals across Europe, Asia and North America, including the Japan Indies Music Video Awards, the Japan Indies Film Festival and the Liverpool Indie Awards. Indeed, he is one of only two foreign artists to win two awards at the annual Unco Film Festival in Tokyo, Japan.

“I am truly delighted and honoured to have won this award at the Kaminari Japan Film Festival,” Ignatius says. “Since its founding in 2020 by legendary radio DJ Mike Rogers, the Kaminari has earnt an enviable reputation as a true bastion of independent filmmaking not only in Japan, but across the planet as a whole. Mike is a real champion of independent film and music and it was a such a pity he could not be at the festival in person this year due to ill health. I truly wish him a full and rapid recovery. Mike Rogers is a legend and the very spirit of indie creativity.”

SHES SO SPECTOR-ESQUE STILL The enigmatic lover.
She’s so Spector-esque: The enigmatic alien lover.

New video out soon

Currently gearing up to release a new ska single entitled ‘Starnation’, Andy states: “A lot of hard work went into producing ‘She’s So Spector-Esque’ musically and Iggy’s visually creative genius has not only complemented it perfectly, but has literally taken it into a whole new dimension!”

It’s been a busy time of late for both Andy and Ignatius, who has just now completed the accompanying video for ‘Starnation’. Another romp around the universe, the video mixes live action with animation and stars Japanese film actress Chihiro Shibata, known for her roles in such cult films as ‘Tag’, ‘Love for Sale’, ‘Village on the Village’ and ‘Be My Baby’, which, appropriately enough, takes its name from Ronnie Spector’s biggest hit during her time as lead singer of the Ronettes.

Ignatius Rake with his beautiful Japanese wife.
Thumbs up: Mr and Mrs Rake celebrating in Japan.

Lift off!

What’s more, having partaken in the Tokyo Lift-Off Film Festival the previous Saturday, where four of his animated music videos were up for gongs, Ignatius spent the day immediately prior to the Kaminari Japan Film Festival premiering the new ‘Starnation’ video at the Flying Teapot, a key nexus for the Tokyo underground art and music scene. Then, moments after landing his Kaminari Award, he received news that ‘She’s So Spector-Esque’ had also made it into the official selection for the upcoming Tokyo International Short Film Festival.

“I’ve got a load of other events and film festivals to go to in Tokyo over the next few weeks, not to mention filming various Japanese actors and actresses for upcoming future videos,” Ignatius says. “I’ve also filmed a couple of gigs for different Japanese bands that I’m making music videos for and have a whole load more concerts to film shortly, not to mention filming a promo video for a very gifted Japanese tattoo artist. I guess, in the words of American indie band Pixies, ‘this ain’t no holiday’, but I’m not complaining – I’m loving every minute of it. Japan rocks!”

The video for ‘She’s So Spector-Esque’, which has so far won a total of 17 awards and laurels, can be viewed both on YouTube and via Ignatius Rake’s Ninjin Art website here: https://www.ninjinart.com/music-videos/

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Notes to editors

1) Originally an analogue collage artist, Ignatius Rake these days creates digital artworks using the same cut-and-paste principles but employing modern technology to produce images that disconcertingly blend photographic realism with the physiologically impossible. In animating these chimera to music, he jumps from the Cliff of Repulsion into the Uncanny Valley, an alien world the Japanese call ‘kimo-kawaii’, or adorably gross. More information as well as his animation and music video portfolio can be found at https://www.ninjinart.com.

2) Andy Keys Clark is an independent UK singer, songwriter, musician and producer based in Cornwall who has worked and played with a host of big names around the planet. Although his roots are found within the genre of ska, his music encompasses a range of different styles, from retro soul to reggae and indie pop, all of which are fully incorporated into his unique sound and output. More information can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/andykeysclarkartistpage/

3) Kaminari Japan Film Festival organiser Mike Rogers is the host of the Mike Rogers Show, which airs on 55 FM radio stations across 19 countries, including Love FM 76.1 in Japan and WFMU in New York. More information on the Kaminari Japan Film Festival is available here: https://filmfreeway.com/thegoodthebadthecheapo

Press Contact

Ignatius Rake

Email: ninjin@ninjinart.com

Picture credits: Video stills copyright Ignatius Rake/Ninjin Art; Mr and Mrs Rake copyright Mrs Rake.

Interviews and high-resolution photographs available on request.

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