Superstar Takumi Saitoh Returns to North America's Largest Showcase of Japanese Cinema

The TJFF is thrilled to announce superstar actor and director TAKUMI SAITOH will be at the festival to introduce the North American premiere of his controversial new film A GAMBLER’S ODYSSEY 2020麻雀放浪記2020on Sunday, June 16.

Directed by Kazuya Shiraishi  (Birds Without Names, The Blood of Wolves, Dare to Stop Us), the film follows Boyatetsu, a professional mahjong player who mysteriously time slips from the ruins of post-war Japan to Tokyo in the year 2020. He finds a ruined city plagued by plummeting population numbers, spiralling unemployment and social unrest. The 2020 Olympics have been cancelled and an evil organization plans to restage them as a massive human-versus-artificial intelligence mahjong battle. Boyatetsu must step forward to represent the human race and find a way back to his own time. A wildly imaginative and deliriously out-of-control roller-coaster ride of bizarre characters, surreal transgression and action, based on Takehiro Irokawa’s novel and Yozo Shimizu’s manga. Also starring Momo, Becky, Naoto Takenaka. The film screens on Sunday June 16 May 10 at 7:00pm. 

Mr. Saitoh joins guests director Shinobu Yaguchi and actress Ayaka Miyoshi (Dance With Me), actress Mikako Tabe (Love’s Twisting Path), the director/comedian Toshiyuki Teruya “Gori” (Born Bone Born) and director Tatsushi Omori (When My Mom Died, I Wanted to Eat Her Ashes and Every Day a Good Day). Mr. Saitoh visited TJFF in 2018 with is film blank 13.

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