If your caffeine dependence means coffee isn’t doing it for you anymore, maybe you’d like to try the newest energy drink: Fukushima Water, made with a healthy dose of Caesium-137. It’s a cult product in Japan, or so says a new video.
No, this isn’t real. But the creative team behind the video wants to make a real point: Four years after the nuclear disaster at Fukushima, contaminated water is still pouring into the Pacific Ocean. In one recent report, another 750 tons of radioactive water leaked into the ground on March 12. Radiation from Japan also made it to California earlier this year (and the video parodies the promise of the new product’s worldwide distribution).
And it’s not even clear that the most recent leak–reported by Tokyo Electric Power Co., which operates the plant–was measured accurately. That fact was one of the main inspirations behind the video.
“It’s difficult to get information about what’s really going on,” says Berlin-based Kenzi Benabdallah, who produced the video with fellow art director Stefan Wittemann. “A lot of the statements the company has made they’ve taken back–it’s all really unclear. And even though the catastrophe is still going on, people don’t seem interested anymore. We wanted to get people talking about it again.”
Benabdallah and Wittemann both have full-time jobs, but started working on the video as a side project about a year ago. After wrangling help from a friend in film school–and finding a water manufacturer happy to let them film on site on weekends–they shot the video earlier this year.
They’re hoping the video reminds people that Fukushima is still a disaster, and we need better facts about what’s happening there. “I’m hoping that people demand transparency from this company, and don’t just accept the news,” says Benabdallah. “We need to start this conversation on social media.”