Itaru Matsui - Director
Itaru Matsui was born in Tokyo in 1984. As a documentary filmmaker, Itaru has made it his mission to bring to our attention the voices that are drowned out by society. He brings them to the surface by immersing himself deeply into their communities.
Heath Cozens - Co-Director
He is a director, cinematographer and editor whose documentaries have explored bilingualism, expat identity, international child custody issues, perceptions of disability, and family bonds.
DOGLEGS, his controversial feature documentary about a disabled Japanese wrestling promotion, premiered at Hot Docs 2015, going on to win Best Director: Documentary at Fantastic Fest 2016. It garnered worldwide media attention and played six months in Tokyo theaters.
Through DOGLEGS, Heath and director Itaru Matsu struck up a friendship and discovered a shared passion for stories that explore unseen worlds.
Making The Film
My connection with CODAs — Children of Deaf Adults— started when I made a film two years ago about the Tohoku tsunami. Many Deaf people died at that time, because they couldn’t hear the alarms.
I met a Japanese man who lost his Deaf parents, through our film. He told me that he never truly understood them. His story moved me deeply and helped me discover the world of CODAs.
I hope this film will encourage people like him, who are children of Deaf parents, in Japan and rest of the world.
-Itaru Matsui, Director, Only I Can Hear