BIFF special program in focus — ‘Discovering New Japanese Cinema’

Image: BIFF
Image: BIFF

BIFF special program in focus — ‘Discovering New Japanese Cinema’

haps Magazine Korea

The Special Program in Focus, which will screen works by Japanese directors who have made their debuts after 2010 and who have been acknowledged by the press and critics, is expected to encourage further attention towards present-day Japanese cinema, which began with the initial sparks of two Hamaguchi Ryusuke’s films: Drive My Car (2021) and Wheel of Fortune and Fantasy (2021).

Much attention will be centered on this important opportunity to assess up-and-coming Japanese directors who are to follow Hamaguchi Ryusuke’s generation and to better gauge the current direction of Japanese cinema.

This year’s Special Program in Focus will introduce films by 10 Japanese directors of the next generation. The program will feature works directed by Miyake Sho, whom director Hamaguchi Ryusuke admiringly dubs as the ‘Kelly Reichardt of Japan’, and Nohara Tadashi, who was the screenplay writer for Hamaguchi Ryusuke’s Happy Hour (2015) and Kurosawa Kiyoshi’s Wife of a Spy (2020).

In addition, the works of former assistant directors of acclaimed directors are in the spotlight. Among the selections are the works of Kawawada Emma, who served as Kore-eda Hirokazu’s assistant director, and Katayama Shinzo, former assistant director of director Bong Joon Ho, who was invited to the 26th Busan International Film Festival’s competition section, New Currents, for his film Missing (2021).

The program also exhibits films of directors who have been officially invited to and awarded by prestigious film festivals around the world.

The works of 10 directors, who include Kiyohara Yui, awardee of the 40th Pia Film Festival’s Grand Prize, Kusano Natsuka, recipient of the 11th Skip City International D-Cinema Festival’s Best Director Award, Fujimoto Akio, awardee of the 30th Tokyo International Film Festival’s Best Asian Future Film Award, Harumoto Yujiro, winner of the 25th Busan International Film Festival’s New Currents Award, Sugita Kyoshi, recipient of the Grand Prix at the 32nd Marseille International Film Festival, and Igarashi Kohei, who was recognized in the Orizzonti section at the 74th Venice International Film Festival, will all be screened in ‘Discovering New Japanese Cinema’.

The selection advisers for this year’s Special Program in Focus include director Hamaguchi Ryusuke, Tokyo International Film Festival director Ichiyama Shozo, Osaka Asian Film Festival programmer Teruoka Sozo, and Skip City International D-Cinema Festival programmer Hasegawa Toshiyuki, among many other. The Special Program in Focus is sponsored by the Lee Heui Keon Korea-Japan Exchange Foundation.

The 27th Busan International Film Festival, which has unveiled its Special Program in Focus, will be held for ten days from Oct 5 (Wed) to Oct 14 (Fri) at the Busan Cinema Center.

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