TOKYO – Most of Japan's media led its coverage of the Academy Award nominations with the news that the late Eiko Ishioka is up for her second Oscar for her costume design work in Mirror Mirror, directed by Tarsem Singh.
Japan's TV stations ran news reports on Ishioka's nomination late Thursday night and Friday morning, while even sober business daily the Nikkei led its Oscar coverage with the news.
The designer, who also won a Grammy for her work on the cover of Miles Davis' Tutu album, had a storied and eclectic career that included being in charge of costumes for the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony, a music video for Bjork, ground-breaking advertising campaigns in Japan, and Tony-nominated costumes and sets for Broadway shows.
Her other big screen costume credits include Singh's The Cell (2000), The Fall (2006) and Immortals (2011), as well as Paul Schrader's Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985), a biopic about Japanese nationalist and author Yukio Mishima, for which she was honored at Cannes.
A win for Ishioka would provide Japan with its first Oscar success since the surprise Best Foreign Language Film triumph of Yojiro Takita's Departures in 2009.
Ishioka, who lived for decades in New York, died from pancreatic cancer in her native Tokyo on Jan 21, 2012.
The last posthumous Oscar winner was Heath Ledger in 2008, for his Best Supporting Actor award for The Dark Knight.