Winner 2011

The Untold Stories of the Tsunami in Japan—March 11, 2011

Fuji Television Network, Inc.

With video from stationary surveillance cameras that survived the flooding and footage shot by coastal residents who didn’t fully comprehend the danger they were in, producer Takanori Ohno and director Sakiko Miyashita assembled a chronological account of the staggering tsunami. They augmented the footage with animation that explains the dynamics of this particular tsunami and illustrates the miraculous escapes of several individuals, including a woman whose minivan was pinned to a highway guard rail by the torrent. Her submerged vehicle didn’t leak, and when the ocean sucked its onslaught back, she simply drove herself and her small child to higher ground. One of the documentary’s revelations is that the huge sea wall meant to protect residents in fact kept many of them from hearing the surging tide. There’s nail-biting, high-angle video of people milling around seaside streets oblivious to the deluge building on the other side of the huge, concrete barrier. For its painstaking reconstruction of the tragic day and interviews that are both poignant and educational, a Peabody Award goes to The Untold Stories of the Tsunami in Japan—March 11, 2011.


Executive Producers: Kouichi Tsutsumi, Kazuya Mitani. Producer: Takanori Ohno. Director: Sakiko Miyashita