Only one in a hundred Japanese is Christian, and Tokyo must be the world's largest non-Christian city, yore more Christmas lights than a ever are twinkling in the capital this year, urging people to buy.
CU sign illuminated Xmas
GV crowds, people shopping in Ginza district???
TV PAN crowded street
SV PAN from "Merry Xmas" sign to crowds shopping
CU decorated Christmas trees (2 shots)
SV window display of flashing lights (2 shots)
LV PAN from sign to decorated tree.
SV PAN from toys to people buying Christmas goods
LV people shopping from street stalls
SV decorated window with "Merry Christmas" sign
GV large crowds in street
CU "Merry Christmas" sign
GV street scene at night
Initials CM/AW/PS/1140 CM/AW/PS/1213
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Background: Only one in a hundred Japanese is Christian, and Tokyo must be the world's largest non-Christian city, yore more Christmas lights than a ever are twinkling in the capital this year, urging people to buy.
In the famous Ginza shopping district particularly, the big department stores are vying with each other to produce really colourful displays.
Most of the customers are Shintoists or Buddhists, but this does not seem to matter. The spending is mainly aimed at the three-day New Year holidays, and Christmas provides a common theme for decorations.
In the three weeks leading up to Christmas day, Tokyo's department stores have stayed open seven days a week.. The main shopping day is one Sunday, when both the Ginza and Shinjuku department store areas are closed to traffic and become pedestrian thoroughfares - an idea adopted during the air pollution crisis last summer which has become a permanent feature.
A spur to the Christmas sales is the annual bonus that most Japanese workers get at Christmas time. The bonuses range from one month's salary to three month's salary in value, and everyone from the most junior typist to the Prime Minister receives one.
For the shops, it can mean sales going up to three times their normal level on rush-day at this time of year.