Japan has one of the oldest and largest film industries in the world and a history that spans more than 100 years. Films have been produced in Japan since 1897, when the first foreign cameramen arrived.
Many of the early films were influenced by traditional theatre such as kabuki. Theatres would hire storytellers to sit next to the screen and narrate silent movies.
The first feature length 'talkie' was released in 1930. Unlike in the West, silent films were still being produced in Japan well into the 1930's and as late as 1938, a third of Japanese films were still silent.
Kinema Junpo is Japans oldest film magazine. It was first published in 1919 and continues to be published today. The Kinema Junpo annual awards began in 1926 and their "10 Best" list is considered to be iconic and prestigious.
Given Japans enormous love for cinema and the gramophone it is no surprise that a series of needle tins were made featuring some of the screen stars of the 1930's.