Alexander Zahlten received his Ph.D. in Film Studies at Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz, Germany. He conducted research for his dissertation at Nihon University (2003-2005) and received a JSPS scholarship for postdoctoral research at Meiji Gakuin University (2009-2011). In 2011 / 2012 he was Assistant Professor at the Department of Film & Digital Media of Dongguk University in Seoul, South Korea.
His research on film and audiovisual culture in East Asia and especially Japan from the 1960s onward focuses on the connection between larger economic, social and institutional structures and aesthetic modalities. He is especially interested in the dynamics of contemporary media ecologies, and his recent work explores topics such as various modes of reflexivity, ‘amateur’ production, and the consequences of the media mix. His dissertation mapped the structural equivalence of systems of production and dissemination and textual meaning for popular film genres in Japan, such as Pink Film, Kadokawa Film, and V-Cinema. Recent publications have examined the role of postcolonial fantasy in Korean “remakes” of Japanese films, the question of categories in a media mix environment, and the history of German sexploitation cinema.
He has curated film programs for institutions such as the German Film Museum and the Athene Francais Cultural Center, Tokyo, and was Program Director for the Nippon Connection Film Festival, the largest festival for film from Japan, from 2002 to 2010.