The Japanese are masters of the weird and wonderful. So when one of their cities looks to create its tourism campaign, it seems only logical to centre it around a monkey… right?! Right??
That’s what the marketing department for Oita City thought as they made a multi-part video series called Saru Tabi (or Monkey Journey). It’s a tale of ape romance and, of course, stars ridiculously good-looking monkey actor Kikuchiyo (don’t ask).
The first episode involves the five-year-old macaque leaving his mundane life in search of his love, Charlotte, in Mt. Takasaki in Oita City.
The second episode, meanwhile, shows Kikuchiyo wearing a tuxedo and carrying flowers for Charlotte. Things don’t go as planned, however, as our hero sees a photo of Charlotte in the arms of another monkey. The episode ends with Kikuchiyo drowning his sorrows with a glass of whisky.
You have to see it to believe it.
Episode three isn’t out yet, so while we’re waiting, here’s the highly-entertaining behind the scenes video.
Directed by award-winning director Kou Etou, the ads are expected to bring in more tourists to the region. Would Kikuchiyo’s heartbreaking love story get you to visit Oita City?