Tokyo 2020 Opening Ceremony: What we know, who's going and who's not

The ambition is to make millions of television watchers around the world gasp and get their jaws dropping.

The Olympic Games' Opening Ceremony is a chance for the host country to show off the best of its culture, introduce the competing countries and athletes and generally get everyone in the mood for a sporting event that brings the world together.

Except Tokyo's Opening Ceremony is mired in controversy after both the director and composer of the show stepped down from their positions.

Director Kentaro Kobayashi was dismissed Thursday following past comments that "ridiculed the painful facts of history," according to Tokyo 2020 organizers. Local media reports said he made anti-Semitic comments in a 1998 comedy act about the Holocaust.

Kobayashi later apologized for his comments in a statement.

"Indeed, as pointed out, in the video software that was released in 1998 to introduce young comedians, a skit script I wrote contained an extremely inappropriate expression," the comedian added.