<“Behind THE COVE” available worldwide>

In Bilingual (English & Japanese): Vimeo


In English iTunes

* In various Languages: NETFLIX ( Aug. 2017 to Aug. 2020)




Negative media coverage on the never-ending whaling issue prompted first-time documentary filmmaker Keiko Yagi to find out more about the topic. With no budget, limited experience in filmmaking, no fluency in English, but armed with a video camera and a strong desire to find out about the truth of the matter on whaling, Yagi started her research.

What started out as a personal investigation triggered by childhood memories of whale dishes inevitably led her to the town of Taiji, the center of the whaling debate and the stage of THE COVE. What she found through her experiences there and elsewhere was a much bigger story than she had initially imagined.

"Behind THE COVE" is director Keiko Yagi’s attempt to present a comprehensive picture of the dolphin and whale hunting issues in Japan, which includes interviews of people on both sides of the whaling dispute, its sinister political side, what THE COVE could not offer, and a unique take on the topic.


Louis Psihoyos,
THE COVE director

Ric O’Barry,
THE COVE main cast

  • The people of Taiji
  • Louis Psihoyos, THE COVE director
  • Ric O’Barry, THE COVE main cast
  • Joji Morishita, IWC commissioner featured in THE COVE
  • Hideki Moronuki, Fisheries negotiator featured in THE COVE
  • Former IWC Japanese commissioners
  • David Hance, Sea Shepherd Leader, 2014
  • Simon Wearne, Former cameraman for TV series WHALE WARS 1
  • Lars Walløe, Scientist / Professor dr, University of Oslo
  • Members of the Dolphin Project
  • ...and more


Camera / Director / Editor: Keiko Yagi

After working at Tokyo branches of Paramount Pictures, Keiko started her own company YAGI Film Inc.
With a strong curiosity and adventurous spirit, Keiko has traveled to many wild unexplored regions, including the Amazon, the Galapagos, Cuba, Israel, South Africa, Kenya, Egypt, and India, etc gaining opportunities to see Japan from the outside.

Focusing on whaling issues, considered to be "taboo" in Japan, "Behind THE COVE" is director Keiko Yagi's first film, but was officially screened at the 2015 Montreal World Film Festival, one of the major films festivals of the world.

  • Sound Recordist: Yuki Nakayama
  • Music coordination: Nariaki Kato
  • Translation / Narration: Russell Goodall

Keiko Yagi | Facebook

Behind "THE COVE" | Facebook

Main publication media(INTERNET/Overseas)

  • * The Washinton Post

  • * New York Times

  • * Los Angeles Times

  • * Yahoo! MOVIE

  • * newtalk

  • * KYODO NEWS korea

  • * Goteborgs-Posten

  • * The Province

  • * The Washington Times

Main publication media(NewsPaper/Domestic)

  • * Yomiuri Shimbun

  • * Tokyo Shimbun

  • * Sankei Shimbun

  • * Asahi Shimbun

  • * Nikkei Shimbun

  • * The JapanTimes

  • * abc NEWS
  • * SIPSE.com

and more, published in numerous media of the world.

<<"Behind THE COVE" Show Time & Qamp;A session>>

Nov. 25(Fri) amp; Nov.26(Sat)
1:10PM / 3:10PM / 5:10PM / 7:10PM Q&A
1:10PM / 3:10PM / 5:10PMQ&A / 9:10PM
Nov. 28(Mon) to Dec.1(Turs)
1:10PM / 3:10PM / 5:10PM / 7:10PM / 9:10PM

【Los Angeles】
Dec. 2 (Fri.) ~ Dec.8 (Thu.)
12:00pm | 2:20pm | 4:50pm | 7:20pm | 10:00pm
Q&A with director Keiko Yagi
Dec.2 (Fri.) 7:20 PM
Dec.3 (Sat.) 7:20 PM
Dec.4 (Sun.) 2:20 PM

【Audience reactions in US】

  • American Male: Reminded me of Oliver Stone's “Untold History of the United States”.
  • American female: I learnt many things I did not know and it was interesting. It was good to know what happened at the time of the Vietnam War.
  • American female: I understood that all large whales are used without waste, but I'm still not clear on how they use dolphins.
  • American male: I wanted to see the sea colored red with blood (as seen in The Cove).
  • American male: This is an intelligent movie.
  • American female: I was glad I now know a lot of information, but the pacing is too speedy.
  • American male: Amazing!
  • American male: It made me think about many issues such as international conferences, the United Nations, nationalism and so on.
  • American male: A touchy subject.
  • American male: Now I know that Sea Shepherd and other groups are barging in to Japan with a rude attitude.
  • Chinese female: I think that 'The Cove' was made only because the target was Japan. If it were China, they would not allow them to make it.
  • Japanese male: I felt the passion in this film.
  • Japanese female: It’s a neutral movie that succeeded in capturing comments from both sides.
  • Japanese female: I can understand that the director approves of whaling, but unlike 'The Cove', it is a movie with composure that shows the contrast between both sides.
  • Japanese female: I can see that it is a true documentary movie without a script.
  • Japanese male: It is a courageous work. In the 1970s, members from the Japanese Fisheries Agency came to the US to explain this problem. This movie conveys what I think about the issue.
  • Japanese female: It was interesting.
  • Japanese female (naturalized American): When you ridicule what America did in the film, I do not think Americans will want to see it.
  • Japanese female: I was surprised to see how members of Sea Shepherd, who have a violent image, talk to the director in a friendly way.
  • American male: I always thought Asians looked the same, but in the film their facial expressions were rich, and I could see that they all looked different.
  • American male: I learned of the beauty of the town of Taiji, which I did not see in "The Cove".
  • American male: I am shocked and can not make any comments.
  • American male: I work in the television industry. This film is longer than the average TV size documentary, but the storytelling and structure is good.
  • American male: I think it's a film made by the charm of the director.
  • American male: It made me think about the nationalism of the United States and other countries, as seen in the recent US election.
  • American male: The film is rich in information. I can imagine a lot of effort went in to research all that material.
  • American female: Even if it is tradition whaling must be stopped. Slavery was a tradition. I am against dolphin hunting.
  • Japanese male: The Japanese government is so gutless.
  • Japanese female: I’ve never had the opportunity to learn about the types and numbers of whales.
  • Japanese female: I am glad that someone from Japan has finally come out with a statement like this film.
  • Japanese male: I am from the generation that ate whale meat, but as many countries oppose it, I think whaling should be stopped.
  • Japanese-American female: I was against whaling, but I now have a slightly different view.
  • Japanese male: I have been in America for over 40 years, and am often considered to be “Americanized”, but this is not the case. I once thought about writing what I want to say in a book, but was stopped from those around me, who warned me it was dangerous. I want to thank the director for her courage.
  • American, male: Japanese Whaling is waste-less, they use every part. When Westerners used to do whaling, these was lot of waste in how they used the whale.
  • American, female: I eat lobsters etc. I believe Japan should protect its own culture.
  • American, male: This film made me think about many things.
  • American, female: I was glad to find out about matters I had never been informed of.
  • Japanese, male: I am actually against whaling. I am really welcomed by anti-whaling groups because I am Japanese and I am anti-whaling. Dolphins and whales are smart, so I oppose the catching of them, but it was good to see and hear a different opinion.
  • Japanese, woman: It was awesome. I’ve lived in America for many years, but I still can not always express my opinions. I wonder what the reaction would be if it was China or South Korea that was doing the whaling?

And the Q&A sessions brought out interesting debates as usual.

<<Media coverage/reviews>>



<The Japan Times>


<North American Post>


<Rafu Shimpo>


<Review of Behind THE COVE>


<Behind THE COVE [Q&A] in L.A.>


Bilingual Subtitles: English & Japanese

2015 / Japan / 50min, 90min & 105min / HD / Color / 16:9 Behind "THE COVE"©2015YAGI Film Inc.