Born in Tokyo, Japan on Jan 1, 1960. He started making films when he was a junior high school student. He graduated from Nippon University, majoring in oil painting. After graduating the university, he was employed by a TV commercial film production. While working for the production, he participated in stage activity along with the people who became both the cast members and film cre for his film, Tetsuo The Iron Man (’89). The film instantly put him in the limelight as a filmmaker with an original vision and style in the international film scene. The films that followed Tetsuo received many rave reviews and prizes: Tetsuo II, the Body Hammer (’92), Tokyo Fist (’95), Bullet Ballet, and A Snake of June (’02) which won the Jury’s Prize (Contro Corrente section) at the Venice Int’l Film Festival. He recently completed his trilogy of Tetsuo films, with Tetsuo The Bullet Man (’09) which entered the competition at the Venice Int’l Film Festival. In his 2004 film Vital, the closing theme song was provided by Cocco who is the main lead in his latest film, Kotoko.

He is also an ardent actor and has acted for many directors. He received the Best Supporting Actor at the Mainichi Newspaper Film Concours in 2002.

Filmography (selective)

ADVENTURE OF DENCHU KOZO  8mm/color/45min. '87

TETSUO THE IRON MAN  16&35mm/black and white/67min. '89

TETSUO II THE BODY HAMMER  35mm/color/83min. '92

TOKYO FIST 35mm/color/87min '95

BULLET BALLET  35mm/black and white/87min. '98

A SNAKE OF JUNE 35mm/black,blue and white/77min. '02

VITAL 35mm/color/86 min '04


KOTOKO DCP/color/91min

 The Phantom of Regular Size
 (8mm / 18 min / mono) 
  Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO 

 This piece is a proto type of Tetsuo, the Iron Man and was written
 when Shinya was active on stage after he had left his job as a
 CF director. He led then one of small fringe theaters in Tokyo called
 Kaijyu Theater and incidentally turned his interest to film after
 this piece. The story portrays the nightmare of a man whose body
 is painfully mutated to a metal beast. Gliding iron penis, the violence
 in extremity is familiar with Tetsuo, the Iron Man.

 Tomorow Taguchi, kei Fujiwara, Nobu Kanaoka, Shinya Tuskamoto

 Produced, written, cinematographed, edited, special effect and
 directed by Shinya Tsukamoto
 1986 Kaijyu Theater Co., Ltd.

 Adventure of Denchu Kozo(Great Analogue World)
 (8mm / 47 min / mono)
  Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

 A low-tech science fiction in which a boy who 'grows' an electric
 pole on his back fights against the evil force to save the earth.
 The boy accidentally warped to the future where the vampire was
 plotting to turn the word in total darkness. Will the boy be able to
 shed light from the pole on his back? This piece was originally
 conceived by Shinya Tsukamoto for stage and was performed by
 the director's own theater troupe, called Kaijyu Theater before
 his main involvement with cinema. The world "Kaijyu" literally
 means the sea beast. This 8mm film won a grand prize at
 the Pia Film Festival, the only independent film festival in Japan.

 Nariaki Senba, Nobu Kanaoka, Shinya Tsukamoto, Tomorow Taguchi,
 Mitsuru Saga, Kenji Nasa, Kei Fujiwara

 Produced, written, cinematographed, edited, special effect and
 directed by Shinya Tsukamoto
 Music by Nobu Kanaoka. / Theme song was performed by Bachikaburi
 1989 Kaijyu Theater Co. Ltd.

 Tetsuo, The Iron Man
 (16mm&35mm/62 min /black and white / mono/standard)

 When a man awoke in the morning, thorny metal pimples came out on
 his cheek. From that day metal grew more and more and bloody
 struggle between his body and metal began- the story of his
 nightmare, metal life, had been started suddenly. One morning at
 crowded railway station, a woman suddenly attacks a man,
 brandishing her grotesquely swollen, metalicized hand.
 He desperately runs away from her. While fleeing, the arm and heel
 of the man driven into the corner begin to swell.
 Then he unconsciously slaughters the woman with his powerful
 arm covered with fuming metal scales. With acute pain
 the man's body gradually mutates
into metal. The metal pimples
 are spreading to half of his face. He devours his lover's sensual body
 to forget his reality. But his penis changes into a metal drill!

 Tomorow Taguchi, Shinya Tsukamoto, Kei Fujiwara, Nobu Kanaoka

 Director, Screenplay, Cinematography, Art Director, lighting, Editor,
 Special Effects by Shinya Tsukamoto /
 Music by Chu Ishikawa
 1989 Kaijyu Theater Co. Ltd.

 Tetsuo2, the Body Hammer
 (35mm/color/mono/standard/82 min)
  Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

 Taniguchi leads a peaceful life with his wife Kana and their son in a
 big city, Tokyo. Taniguchi had curiously lost his memories before
 he was adopted at the age of eight. Fragments of his mysterious past
 flashes back sometimes, giving him only a vague clue to
 his lost childhood. One day two mysterious skinheads steal up on
 the Taniguchi and provoke his anger. And the rage affects his body
 to cause strange mutation, accompanying a great pain and the senses.
 It is a birth of a cyber-gun, a deadly human- weapon. Taniguchi is
 kidnapped himself by the skinheads and taken to a gigantic loft where
 tens of skinheads are under violent physical training. He is strapped
 in a steel chair and undergoes a medical experiment.
 The Guy, the head of the skinheads, watches the process.
 When Taniguchi's brain is stimulated, a part of his body mutates
 into a metallic cyber-gun.

 Tomorow Taguchi, Nobu Kanaoka

 Director, Screenplay, Cinematography, Art Director, lighting, Editor,
 Special Effects by Shinya Tsukamoto  
 Special Effects and Make Up by Takashi Oda / Kan Takahama /
 Akira Fukaya
 Music by Chu Ishikawa
 1992 Toshiba EMI and Kaijyu Theater Co. Ltd.

 (35mm/87 min / color / mono / vista)
   Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

 Tokyo Fist, Shinya Tsukamoto deals with the same theme from a
 completely different perspective. There are three main characters
 living in Tokyo: A business man who works for a big corporation,
 a boxer/trainer who is the friend of the business man and a woman
 who eventually breaks the two men's friendship.
 It is the relationship of the love triangle, poignant yet funny,
 and portrays each character that gradually confronts with one's
 own self. The concept of a human body/flesh against metropolitan
 backdrop is punctuated by the stylized boxing scene.
 Boxing is one of the most primitive sports of all times;
 arousing one's fighting instinct.

 Shinya Tsukamoto, Koji Tsukamoto, Kahori Fujii

 Original Story by Hisashi Saito and Shinya Tsukamoto/
 Written, directed, cinamtographed, edited by Shinay Tsukamoto/
 Music by Chu Ishikawa
 1995 Kaijyu Theater Co. Ltd.

 Bullet Ballet
 (35mm / black and white / 87 min / stereo / vista)
  Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

 Goda lost his love of ten years, Kiriko, who had killed herself
 with a gun. The shock of her sudden death triggers him into
 a fascination with guns. One night, being heavily drunk,
 he notices Chisato, who is a member of a street gang group.
 Goda remembers that he was once assaulted by the gang.
 While Goda gives her a piece of his mind and complained about
 an injury he suffered from that assault, four other gang members
 surround him and beat him up. After the death of Kiriko,
 things fall apart for Goda and his life becomes more and
 more meaningless to him. Driven by revenge against the gang,
 Goda roams the town in search of a gun.

 Shinya Tsukamoto, Kirina Mano, Tatsuya Nakamura

 Director, Screenplay, Cinematography, Art Director, lighting,
 Editor, Special Effects by Shinya Tsukamoto/
 Music by Chu Ishikawa
 1998 Kaijyu Theater Co. Ltd.

 A Snake of June
 (35mm/77 min/blue monotone/DTS)
  Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

 Rinko Tatsumi is a quiet, reserved woman in her mid-thirties.
 She works as a capable and respected phone counselor at an
 emergency phone line at the county mental health center.
 Her husband Shigehiko is an important businessman.
 They have no children. It is June, the rainy season in Japan.
 One humid, uncomfortable day, Rinko receives a strange letter
 in an envelope inscribed: “A secret concealed from your husband.”
 Inside, she finds photos of herself masturbating.
 Her cozy, familiar life is about to crash down like a house of cards.
 Rinko becomes even more anxious when she receives a phone call
 from the man who sent the photographs. Surprisingly, the man does
 not demand money. Instead, he demands that she wears a very short
 mini skirt that barely covers her panties and that she purchases
 a vibrator…


 Director, Screenplay, Cinematography, Art Director, lighting,
 Editor, Special Effects by Shinya Tsukamoto/
 Music by Chu Ishikawa
 2002 Kaijyu Theater Co. Ltd.

 (35mm/87min/DTS/American Vista/color)
  Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

 Hiroshi Takagi wakes up in hospital to find that his memory has been
 affected after being involved in a car accident. At first, he is unable
 even to remember the faces of his parents. After returning home to
 convalesce, Hiroshi is drawn back to his early interest in medicine
 and eventually enrolls in medical school where he encounters
 Ikumi Yoshimoto, a model female student with some relationship
 issues. As his studies progress, the time comes to begin
 the dissection program of his course. The doctor tells them to
 always trust their eyes, to see what is actually there, and to draw
 their conclusions from this. Hiroshi begins this area of his course
 with dedication, but memory is a fragile and complex entity.
 In stark contrast to his studies, which are based on fact and reality,
 Hiroshi starts being "visited" by a young woman. Sometimes they are
 in his room, and other times they are at the beach or in
 a sunlit forest. At the same time, Ikumi is trying to
 win Hiroshi's favors, and she also spends time with him.

 Tadanobu Asano/Nami Tsukamoto/KIKI

 Director, Screenplay, Cinematography, Art Director, lighting,
 Editor, Special Effects by Shinya Tsukamoto/
 Music by Chu Ishikawa/Sound Recording by Yoshiya Obara
 2004 Kaijyu Theater Co. Ltd.

HAZE- Original Long Version
( DV / Color / 16:9 / 49min / Stereo)
directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

A man wakes up to find himself locked in a tiny, cramped concrete room, in which he can barely move. Why is he there and where did he come from? All we know is that he has a terrible stomach injury and is slowly bleeding to death. He begins to explore the narrow confines of his prison and crawls around the maze-like room, only to see a horrible vision of hell waiting for him at each end of the room.

Finally he gives up on the struggle and collapses in exhaustion. Then he begins to remember images from his past. Clinging to these images he creeps forward with the last ounces of his strength and meets a woman in a place that stinks of rotting corpses. The man and the woman both try to recall where they came from, but their memories are so uncertain that they are not even sure they want to return. The man is ready to give up but the woman insists on going forward. Neither of them can imagine the incredible end to the journey.

Shinya TSUKAMOTO, Kaori FUJII, Takahiro MURASE, Takahiro KANDAKA, Masato TSUJIOKA, Mao SAITO



A Shinya Tsukamoto Film
(91min/color/16:9 /DCP/5,1 channel/Drama/Japan/2011)
Directed by Shinya TSUKAMOTO

?2011 Kaijyu Theater Co., Ltd./Shinya Tsukamoto

The main character is a single mother who harms herself by cutting her body on a regular basis.  Her name is Kotoko. She doesn’t do this to die but it is her way of confirming her body’s will to live.  She is driven by two conflicting impulses…the body with a strong will to live and the mind trying to purge the body. However a new life, her new born baby, enters into her existence, a helpless life that can be lost if not properly cared for.   Tending to something so fragile, she lovingly protects the new life from any possible harm.  As she reads and hears the daily news of violence, her desire to love and protect her child becomes so intense that she begins to act abnormally. 

Kotoko is filled with intense emotions that cannot be labeled simply as love, rage, fear, and doubt.   As she is being driven by these emotions, she lives her life continually seeking relief from them.  Yet she refuses to define these emotions through the filter of rationality. They are indefinable, invisible and something of an organic mass.   These emotions are ultimately transformed into a strong desire to live. 

It is a story of a mother who suffers from double vision.  She sees a person splitting into two…a negative person and a positive person.  Because of this, she never feels at ease and caring for her baby is a nerve wrecking task that eventually leads her to a nervous breakdown.  Things get out of control and subsequently she is suspected of being a child abuser and her baby is taken away.  
She doesn’t see double when she is singing. It is the only time in which her world becomes united and her mind is at peace.  She becomes intimate with a man who is enchanted with her singing but the two eventually go their separate ways.  In the mean time, her dear child finally comes back to her but her “seeing double” becomes so intense that….