Photo/IllutrationThe construction site of the new National Stadium for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, which straddles the capital's Shinjuku and Shibuya wards, on Oct. 27. (Tatsuya Shimada)

  • Photo/Illustraion
  • Photo/Illustraion
  • Photo/Illustraion
  • Photo/Illustraion

Leading figures from Japan’s film and music industries have been appointed to a planning team for the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games.

The eight-member planning team will include Takashi Yamazaki, director of the popular Japanese movie series “Always: Sunset on Third Street,” singing star Sheena Ringo, critically acclaimed "kyogen" actor Nomura Mansai, and Genki Kawamura, producer of the anime blockbuster movie “Your Name.”, the Games’ organizing committee announced Dec. 20.

An experts’ discussion session held by the organizing committee also decided on a basic concept for the events consisting of eight elements: Peace, Unity, Recovery, Future, Japan/Tokyo, Athletes, Participation, and Excitement.

“We chose members from the generation of people who will continue to perform actively after the Games,” said Fujio Mitarai, 82, honorary chairman of the Tokyo 2020 organizing committee and leader of the experts’ discussion session.

With four ceremonies in their remit--two each for the Olympic and Paralympic Games--the planning team is tasked with conceiving a plan of how to tell a story, including introduction, two middle sections and a conclusion for each ceremony, using the eight elements of the basic concept.

The director will be selected after those goals have been achieved, and the members of the planning team could be in line for the job.

“It’s possible that the director might be chosen from the planning team,” said Hajime Nakai, chief ceremony officer of the committee.

Sheena has previous experience that will come in useful, as she was involved in producing the handover ceremony to introduce the 2020 Tokyo Olympics at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics' Closing Ceremony in 2016.