23 Aug – Japanese filmmaker Takumi Saitoh will no doubt be the main highlight of the upcoming Japanese Film Festival (JFF) 2017.
The "Blank 13" director will be in Malaysia on 5 September to attend the invite only opening ceremony of JFF 2017.
The news of the filmmaker's appearance was revealed by the director of The Japan Foundation Kuala Lumpur (JFKL), Koichi Horikawa, earlier today at the JFF 2017 press conference.
However, that is not all, as the 36-year-old is also holding a special preview of his aforementioned feature directorial debut on the same day at 5pm at GSC Pavilion KL.
This will be a truly special treat for fans in Malaysia as they will get to watch "Blank 13" months ahead of its official release in Japan.
"This will be the first time it will be shown in Southeast Asia," said Mr. Horikawa. "Indeed, the movie will only be released in Japan in February 2018, making this a very rare and fortunate treat for Malaysian audiences!"
The movie premiered at the 26th Yubari International Film Festival and has gone on to win the Asian New Talent Award for Best Director for Saitoh at the 20th Shanghai Film Festival.
The special preview, which is by invitation only, includes a Q&A session with the filmmaker after the screening.
Fans, don't fret, as you will still get to meet Saitoh, who is also well-known as a talented actor, during the Meet-and-Greet Session with him at 4pm at Tokyo Street, Pavilion KL on 5 September.
With two of his movies screening at this year's JFF ("Blank 13" and "The Projects", in which he appears in his award-winning supporting role as a mysterious character named Shoji), the film festival is a definitely a must for his fans and Japanese movie aficionados alike to attend.
JFF last year saw the attendance of more than ten thousand moviegoers and JFKL is hoping to see more for JFF 2017.
This year with Cinema Online as the official media partner once again, JFF returns for its 14th edition from 7 September to 1 October 2017. It will kick off on 5 September with the opening ceremony at 7pm at GSC Pavilion KL.
A total of 14 titles will be presented at the film festival: the highly anticipated "Blank 13", "Midnight Diner 2" and "Tsukiji Wonderland", as well as "Asian Three-Fold Mirror 2016: Reflections" (which includes a Sharifah Amani-starring piece filmed in Penang), "The Projects", "Tora-san Of Goto", "Her Love Boils Bathwater", "ReLIFE", "Teiichi: Battle Of The Supreme High", "Survival Family", "Rudolf The Black Cat", "The Long Excuse", "Samurai Hustle Returns" and "Seto And Utsumi".
The 14th Japanese Film Festival will take place in Klang Valley from 7 to 13 September at the following cinemas: GSC Mid Valley, GSC 1 Utama, GSC Pavilion KL and GS NU Sentral.
It will then head to GSC Gurney Plaza, Penang, from 14 to 17 September, before moving on to East Malaysia.
Another opening ceremony will be held on 20 September at GSC CityONE Megamall, Kuching, kicking off JFF 2017 in Kuching that will run from 21 to 24 September.
JFF 2017 will wrap up after its run at GSC Suria Sabah, Kota Kinabalu, from 29 September to 2 October.
(Photo source: The Japan News | AsiaOne)