2019-01-14 10:43:05[UPDATES]

The 2019 “Japanese Film Festival” Coming to a Close, the “Chinese Film Festival” Revisiting Japan i

As part of the second “Chine-Japanese Film Festival”, the 2019 “Japanese Film Festival” closed in Chengdu on the evening of January 13, where TONDE SAITAMA, as the closing film, hit the screen in Cinema Palace, Taikooli in Chengdu. Vice President of UNIJAPAN, Tamotsu Shiina, Deputy Director of Shanghai International Film Festival Center, WANG Ye, Director of Beijing Japan Foundation, Koichiro Takahashi, and film Director, Hideki Takeuchi, Producer, Yamako and others attended the closing event.
This year's "Japan Film Festival" brought to the Chinese audience six new Japanese films that were screened in Shanghai and Chengdu at the same time, stirring up a film enthusiasm.
New films’ premiere attracting thousands of audiences
As one of the key activities of the "Chinese-Japanese Film Festival", the "Japan Film Festival" unveiled six films: NETEMO SAMETEMO, HANALEI BAY, KIMI NO TORI WA UTAERU, WE LOVE, KUSO YARO TO UTSUKUSHIKI SEKAI and TONDE SAITAMA. According to the ticketing platform “Taopiaopiao’s statistics, the occupancy rates each day of Shanghai Grand Theater and Xintiandi UME International Cineplex, Chengdu's Taikooli Cinema Palace all exceeded 90%. In the past three days, over 10,000 film fans in Shanghai and Chengdu have entered the theater to enjoy the “Japan Film Festival”.

The opening ceremony of 2019 "Japan Film Festival" in Shanghai
At the opening ceremony of the 2019 "Japan Film Festival" on January 11th, the Chinese and Japanese representatives expressed their recognition towards the cooperation achievements between the two countries’ filmmakers, and their expectation for future friendly exchanges and cooperation.
TONDE SAITAMA, directed by Hideki Takeuchi and staring Fumi Nikaidô and Gackt, met the audiences as the opening film. It is adapted from the work of the famous cartoonist Mineo Maya and is one of the spotlighted films in the first half of 2019. It is learnt that this film will be staged nationwide in Japan on February 23, 2019 after its global debut at the opening ceremony in the Grand Theater on the evening of January 11th. In the meet-and-greet session, fans and the director Hideki Takeuchi exchanged ideas face to face in an inspiring atmosphere brimming with applauds and laughter.

The meet-and-greet session at the opening ceremony in Shanghai
After the opening ceremony, Shanghai International Film Festival Center and Alibaba Pictures jointly held the opening reception, inviting film production and distribution experts in Shanghai to communicate on the China-Japan co-production project and seek more cooperation opportunities between Chinese and Japanese films.

Group picture of guests at the opening reception
On January 12, the Japanese representative flew to Chengdu to attend the post-screening meetingon the evening of the same day and the closing ceremony on the evening of January 13. The director shared his creation journey with Chengdu audiences. Some fans wondered why Gackt is chosen to play the role of a high school student. And the director responded: "A high school student acted by the 44-year-old Gackt forms a contrast that will bring special effects to the film. In Japan, fans also expect such age contrast.” The fans almost understood every laughingstock in the film during the screening, bursting into laughter now and then till the very end of the film.

Hideki Takeuchi at the meet-and-greet event on January 12
Director Hideki Takeuchi expressed his gratitude to the fans who like this film so much. He said that he sat secretly and silently in the last row after the opening to observe the Chinese audience’s viewing reaction and he was moved unexpectedly. And He, in a good mood, than changed the topic and even made a joke with the Chengdu audiences: “I am from Chiba and really feel jealous of Saitama as all of you like it so much!”

In the evening of January 12, the fan asked the director a question in Japanese 

After the event, the director signed his name and interacted with the fans

The “Chinese Film Festival” to arrive in Japan in March to promote cultural exchange
At the closing ceremony of the "Japan Film Festival" in the evening of January 13, the Director of the Beijing Japan Foundation, Koichiro Takahashi, said: "From the latest policy on film in China and Japan, in May 2018, the China-Japan film co-production agreement signed between the two countries’ governments has come into effect. I believe that there will be more excellent co-productions between the two countries in the future, which is very exciting.” WANG Ye, Deputy Director of the Shanghai International Film Festival Center, on behalf of the Center, noted in the speech “this year has witnessed the second “Japan Film Show” held on the basis of cooperation between the two parties last year, which has gathered fine selected works to present with full sincerity. We have always believed in the power of films in drawing the Chinese and Japanese people closer, and will try to build a film bridge between the hearts of the two countries’ people." 

Group picture of guests at the closing ceremony

Group picture of the director and audiences
In March this year, another part of the 2019 “Chinese-Japanese Film Festival” – “Chinese Film Festival” will be held in Tokyo and Osaka, Japan, to showcase the latest and hottest films in China, together with a China-Japan film co-production forum, aiming to further promote the cultural exchanges between the two countries.



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