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Main Sections
TIFF will showcase a lineup of outstanding films from around the world in nine main sections.
TIFF’s principal section and the highlight of the film festival, the Competition showcases feature films that were completed after January 2017. Fifteen films from around the world will be selected for screening at the festival. The International Competition Jury of five international cineastes will award the Tokyo Grand Prix, Special Jury Prize, Best Director, Best Actress, Best Actor, Best Artistic Contribution and Best Screenplay Award. The winners will be announced at the Closing Ceremony.
Asian Future
“From Asia to the World and to the future!” Asian Future showcases films by emerging directors who have directed up to three feature films. Outstanding works from the Asian region, which includes Japan and the Middle East, will be selected for the festival. Members of some films’ crew and casts will be invited to participate in festival events and industry networking sessions. “Best Asian Future Film Award” and “The Spirit of Asia Award by the Japan Foundation Asia Center” will be awarded to the winners.
Japanese Cinema Splash
Japanese Cinema Splash promotes the best in Japanese independent films to a world audience. The section showcases exceptionally unique, creative and challenging films from the evolving Japanese film industry, regardless of the stage of the directors’ careers. The selected films will be actively promoted not only to the general public but also to international film festival programmers, press and film buyers from overseas.
Special Screenings
The Special Screenings section shows high-profile films, both domestic and international, that have not been released in Japan. The glamorous Opening and Closing screenings are a part of this line-up. Many of the invited guests associated with the films will attend the celebrations, including the Red Carpet Ceremony, and make stage appearances.
Japan Now
Japan Now employs a unique perspective in selecting a group of films that represents today’s Japan. For the international audience, they will provide insight into the aesthetics and culture of contemporary Japan; while for the Japanese audience, they will provide a comprehensive view of Japanese cinema today. To commemorate the 30th anniversary of the festival, the Japan Now section will also highlight the achievements of (in alphabetical order), Sakura Ando, Yu Aoi, Hikari Mitsushima, and Aoi Miyazaki, the four Japan Now Silver Screen Muses of today’s Japanese cinema.
World Focus
World Focus showcases internationally acclaimed films by noted directors that have recently been completed but not yet released in Japan. The section features films that have created a sensation on the international film festival circuit. More than half of the films screened in World Focus are later released in Japanese theaters.
The Japan Foundation Asia Center Presents CROSSCUT ASIA #04: What’s Next from Southeast Asia
The Japan Foundation Asia Center’s CROSSCUT ASIA series showcases Asian films with a focus on particular countries, directors, actors or themes. Following the first, second, and third editions in which the series showcased works from Thailand, the Philippines, and Indonesia, CROSSCUT ASIA will feature films from various Southeast Asian filmmakers this year in commemoration of ASEAN’s 50th anniversary. The fourth edition will be providing audiences with the opportunity to see the lineage of Southeast Asian filmmaking as works from next-generation Southeast Asian filmmakers are featured at the recommendations of auteurs such as the Philippines’ Brillante Ma. Mendoza, Vietnam’s Tran Anh Hung, and Thailand’s Apichatpong Weerasethakul.
Japanese Classics
Japanese Classics features digitally restored Japanese films yesteryear, providing an opportunity for new audiences to experience the many masterpieces from the industry’s golden eras.
Youth (TIFF Children / TIFF Teens)
TIFF Youth was established with a view to introducing the joys of cinema to the next generation. In the TIFF 2017: Teens Meet Cinema workshop, participating junior high students made films together, and their impressive work will be screened during the festival. TIFF Children will be showing silent classics with live performances. Children and their parents alike are sure to enjoy the events. TIFF Teens, focusing on adolescent characters and themes, will spotlight films that have earned international film festival acclaim. The experience of seeing youth from different worlds on a big screen is sure to have an indelible impact on young viewers, and it is TIFF’s belief that such experiences will help cultivate a new generation of avid cinemagoers.

30th TIFF Special Programs and Allied-Events Lineup

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Programming Directors and Advisors
Competition Programming Director
Yoshi Yatabe

Yoshi Yatabe

Yatabe entered the film distribution and advertising business after working for the Industrial Bank of Japan (currently Mizuho Bank). He also has produced documentaries and managed the Festival du Film Français au Japon. Joining TIFF in 2002, he oversaw the Programming Division and the selection of films, as well as served as Programming Director for the Japanese Eyes section (17-25th TIFF) and from the 26th TIFF, he served as the Programming Director of Japanese Cinema Splash. In 2007, he assumed the position of Competition Programming Director for TIFF.

Asian Future Programming Director
Kenji Ishizaka

Kenji Ishizaka

Ishizaka began researching and critiquing Asian and documentary films after majoring in film studies in Waseda University’s Graduate School. He planned and managed an Asia Middle-East Film Festival Series from 1990 to 2007 for the Japan Foundation. He has been a Programming Director of TIFF since its 20th edition in 2007. He concurrently holds the position of the professor and dean of Japan Institute of the Moving Image. He has written several books including “Amidst the Sea of Documentary: Dialogues with Tsuchimoto Noriaki,” published by Gendai Shokan.

Japan Now Programming Advisor
Kohei Ando

Kohei Ando

Ando, who in his youth worked with Shuji Terayama, is known for his refined and creative expressivity as a filmmaker. He is a global pioneer in incorporating Hi-vision techniques into filmmaking. His films have received numerous awards, including the Silver Maile Award at the Hawaii International Film Festival and the Grand Prize at the International Electronic Cinema Festival in Montreux. His works are included in the collections of major art museums and film libraries in Paris, New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo and elsewhere. In both 2001 and 2005, Ando retrospectives were held in Paris. He is also a professor emeritus at Waseda University.

TIFF Teens Programming Advisor
Mitsuo Tahira

Mitsuo Tahira

Tahira has had a 25-year career in film, since launching the Kinder Film Festival, the very first children’s film festival in Japan, in 1992. In 1994 he assumed the roles of both festival director and producer. The festival was later renamed the KINEKO International Children’s Film Festival in 2015 and moved to Futakotamagawa. The festival has now grown into the largest international children’s film festival in Japan. Since 2016, the festival has begun showcasing Japanese films for children of all ages at overseas festivals. Tahira also pioneered what he calls “live cinema,” screenings accompanied by live voice-over actors. These events now travel to various venues around the nation.

Animation Focus Programming Advisor
Ryusuke Hikawa

Ryusuke Hikawa

Hikawa is an animation and special effects researcher, as well as a Visiting Professor in the Graduate School of Global Japanes Studies, Meiji University. He graduated from Tokyo Institute of Technology. Hikawa has served as a jury member at the Japan Media Arts Festival, the Mainichi Film Awards and as a selection member of the Film Merit Category, The Bunka-Cho Film Awards. He is a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of Japan. For the Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan, he conducted a survey on special effects in Japan and wrote the “Guide to Japanese Animation: Robot Animation.” He recently authored “Hosoda Mamoru no sekai - kibou to kiseki wo umu anime-shon” (The World of Hosoda Mamoru: Animation Generating Hope and Miracles).

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