[INTERIOR: The elder Mr. Yamada’s office, where he sits at his desk. Tanaka enters with a young woman behind him]
Yamada: Thank you for coming.
Tanaka: No no, thank you for inviting me.
Yamada: No no, you are very busy, I appreciate it.
[Three minutes of apologetic pleasantries later…]
Tanaka: If you don’t mind, I’ve asked Kimura-san here to sit in on today’s meeting. She’s a recent graduate of Waseda University and one of our top new recruits.
Kimura: It is my humble pleasure to be here and I hope you will allow me the pleasure of working for hours on end each day for your prestigious company!* [deep bow]
Yamada: Welcome, Kimura-san. Can you bring us some tea?
Kimura: Yes, sir! Right away sir! [exits]
Y: Alright Tanaka, I know you’ve been hard at work on The Avengers' Japanese premier but we've already got another big campaign to spearhead. It's the latest spy action thriller, The Bourne Legacy.
T: Ahh, Matt Damon! I’ll make some calls to the usual folks, he’s always been willing to eat Japanese food and smile on television in the past…
Y: Sorry, he’s not in this picture.
T: There’s a new Bourne movie but Matt Damon’s not in it? Who’s the star?
Y: Jeremy Renner.
T: Never heard of him. Have Japanese audiences seen him before?
Y: Actually he has a number of hit movies on his resume. Hurt Locker, Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol, The Avengers…
T: Oh, which Avenger was he? [Kimura returns with tea for two, sits down]
Y: He was the one we replaced with a Japanese comedian.
T: Ahh, well, we needed to sell that one somehow. Why don’t we just do that again for this new picture?
Y: If Jeremy Renner is starring in his own movies, I don’t think we can keep pretending he doesn’t exist.
T: Oh, yes, of course. OK, how about this: rather than replace him, we simply supplant him with a Japanese actress.
T: Yes, these movies always have a woman running next to Bourne, right? We make a point of hiring a beautiful actress to dub that character’s lines, then we can just direct all the press attention to her. They’ll write stories about her dress and her love life and how sexy she is and in all the photos they take of her, the movie poster will just be in the background. Hell, maybe no one will notice Matt Damon’s not in the picture until they’re already in the theaters. But the audience has already paid at that point, so our job is done.
Y: Tanaka-san, it almost sounds like you’re designing our entire promotional campaign around deceiving our customers.
T: Oh, um, well, is that…illegal?
Y: Not at all! It’s brilliant. Great job, as usual. Oh, Kimura-san?
K: Yes sir?
Y: Now that we’ve come to our decision, I have a question for you.
K: Absolutely sir! Do you need me to get demographic information on potential actresses for this campaign, or do you want to know what experience I’ve had working on…
Y: No, no, I was just wondering if we could have more tea.
*In Japanese: よろしくおねがいします！