Japanese Film Festival celebrates 20th anniversary

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‘Her Love Boils Bathwater’

The Japan Foundation, Manila, celebrating the 20th anniversary of its Japanese Film Festival (JFF), widely known as EIGASAI, announced the full lineup of films and special guests for JFF EIGASAI 2017. Started on July 1 until August 29, in honor of the Philippines-Japan Friendship Month, the festival is set to be the biggest and best yet. The event has 20 films of various genres selected for more than 100 screenings across six major cities nationwide, JFF EIGASAI’s 20th anniversary edition.

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JFF EIGASAI 2017 officially kicks off its anniversary in grand style opening night on July 6 with the screening of “Her Love Boils Bathwater” (Yu o wakasu hodo no atsui ai) at the Shang Cineplex to be graced by this year’s special guest director Ryota Nakano, who is also scheduled to hold talks for filmmakers and the general public during his stay in the Philippines to talk about both his career and the making of his successful first commercial film Her Love Boils Bathwater.

To commemorate the anniversary, JFF EIGASAI 2017 presents a retrospective showcase of films. There will be a special encore screening of “Departures” (Okuribito), the 81st Academy Award for Best Foreign Language winner and one of the most well-received films in the history of EIGASAI. Two rare 16mm films screened at the first Japanese Film Festival in 1997: “The Sting of Death” (Shi no toge) directed by Kohei Oguri, the Grand Prix du Jury winner at the 1990 Cannes Film Festival, and “Memories of You” (Love story wo kimi ni) directed by Shinichiro Sawai, revived on July 1 at the birthplace of the Japanese Film Festival, CCP, serving as a prelude to the grand opening night on July 6 at the Shangri-La Plaza.

A long-lasting partnership with CCP and the Japan Foundation’s support towards independent filmmakers brings forth again the screening of the Japanese independent film: “Poolsideman” winner of the Best Picture Award in the Japanese Cinema Splash at the Tokyo International Film Festival 2016. Hirobumi Watanabe, director of the film will also be present at his Philippine premier during the Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival in August, an allied festival of JFF EIGASAI since last year.

For the 20th edition, EIGASAI is part of the Japan Foundation Asia Center’s unified Japanese Film Festival held around Southeast Asia and the Pacific region, and together with the Japan Foundation, Manila, different genres of films from animation, drama, comedy, documentary, to horror, were curated with a total of 20 titles—17 of which are with English subtitles and three are dubbed in Tagalog, offering Japanese film lovers the chance to experience their favorite genre while disco­vering something new.

Director Ryota Nakano

In addition to the cinema partners from last year, JFF EIGASAI 2017 is expanding its reach and impact in the wider region by adding cinemas in Bacolod and Iloilo, and extending the festival period till the end of August. As with the previous years, JFF EIGASAI 2017 will also have its provincial run in Baguio, Cebu and Davao. Screening venues are: CCP Dream Theater, CCP Complex, Pasay City (August 5, 10 and 11), Shang Cineplex Cinema, Shangri-La Plaza, Mandaluyong City (July 6 to 16), UP Film Institute, UP-Diliman, Quezon City (August 16 to 19), Abreeza Mall Cinema, Ayala, Davao City (July 21 to 23), FDCP Cinematheque-Davao, Davao City (July 26 to 30), Ayala Center Cebu Cinema, Cebu City (August 2 to 6), SM City Baguio Cinema, Baguio City (August 10 to 13), SM City Bacolod Cinema, Bacolod City (August 24 to 27), and FDCP Cinematheque-Iloilo, Iloilo City (August 25 to 29).

Admission is free on a first-come, first-served basis, except the screenings at Shang Cineplex Cinema which will be P100 per one film screening.

JFF EIGASAI 2017 is generously supported by Shangri-La Plaza, Shang Cineplex, UP Film Institute, Cultural Center of the Philippines, SM Supermalls, SM City Baguio, SM City Bacolod, Film Development Council of the Philippines, Japanese Association of Northern Luzon, Sa Lubong-Baguio, Cordillera Green Network, JT International (Philippines) Inc., Viva Communications Inc., Tagalized Movie Channel (TMC), Mitsubishi Corporation, Japan Airlines Co., Ltd., Akira, SumoSam and Richmonde Hotel Ortigas.

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