"It was a nice plug for video-game maker Nintendo Co., the creator of the franchise that has made the Mario franchise, Zelda and other games recognized around the world. A video preceding the premier's entrance also showed Hello Kitty and Pac-Man, characters from Japan's Sanrio Co. and Bandai Namco Holdings Inc. respectively. "I borrowed the power of Japan's characters as I wanted to show Japan's soft power," Abe told reporters in Rio in comments carried by local media.Japan's Abe Plays Super Mario in Rio to Promote 2020 Tokyo Games - Bloomberg
The country is emphasizing its cultural exports amid waning economic influence. In recent years, the government has stepped up its "Cool Japan'' policy, which aims to "win the world's sympathy'' by promoting sushi, zen buddhism and manga."
Monday, August 22, 2016
Japan's Abe Plays Super Mario in Rio to Promote 2020 Tokyo Games - Bloomberg
A multifaceted sign of the times