TJFF Announces 2014 Line-up


Toronto Japanese Film Festival Celebrates UNESCO’s Addition of Japanese Cuisine to Intangible Cultural Heritage List

 The Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre’s 3rd annual Toronto Japanese Film Festival opens with the Canadian premiere of Yuzo Asahara’s A TALE OF SAMURAI COOKING in celebration UNESCO’s addition of Japanese cuisine to their Intangible Cultural Heritage List.  Fittingly, the opening reception will be catered by one of Canada’s finest – and priciest – restaurants, Kaiseki Yu-zen Hashimoto. The delicious romantic comedy-drama takes a light-hearted look at the world of samurai chefs and stars the popular Aya Ueto and Kengo Kora.

The 2014 festival will be held from June 12 to 27 and will feature 18 films including many North American and Canadian premieres. Some highlights include:

– The North American premiere of Yoshihiro Nakamura’s fast paced thriller THE SNOW WHITE MURDER CASE, one of the most anticipated movies of 2014, starring Mao Inoue and Go Ayano.

Director Nakamura will be joining us at the festival to introduce his film and meet his Toronto fans.

  • The North American premiere of Takashi (Always: Sunset of 3rd Street) Yamazaki’s THE ETERNAL ZERO, still in Japanese theatres and one of 10 most popular films in Japanese cinema history. Starring Jun’ichi Okada and Mao Inoue
  • The Canadian premiere of the latest from Takashi Miike: THE MOLE SONG: UNDERCOVER AGENT REIJI –  a surreal, comical adaptation of the popular Yakuza manga with Toma Ikuta, Riisa Naka, Takayuki Yamada and Shinichi Tsutsumi
  • The Canadian premiere of Shin Togashi’s OSHIN, the new film version of the beloved NHK drama
  • The North America premiere of Yasuo Furuhata’s SHONEN H based on the huge best seller and nominated for the Japanese Academy award for Best Film of the Year
  • The North American premiere of Miki Takahiro’s romantic fantasy GIRL IN THE SUNNY PLACE starring Arashi’s Jun Matsumoto and Juri Ueno
  • The Canadian premiere of Yoji Yamada’s THE LITTLE HOUSE, winner of the Berlin Silver Bear for best performance by actress Haru Kuroki
  • The North American premiere of the charming family anime film, MAGICAL SISTERS YOYO AND NENE
  • The North America premiere of Satoshi Nagai’s hilarious advertising industry comedy JUDGE! starring Satsoshi Tsumabuki and Keiko Kitagawa
  • Based on his novel, and later internationally-acclaimed stage production, the Canadian premiere of Daisuke Miura’s controversial tale of 4 men and 4 women together for one night in Roppongi sex club: LOVE’S WHIRLPOOL
  • The Toronto premiere of Yuki Tanada’s deeply moving family drama MOURNING RECIPE starring Hiromi Nagasaku and Fumi Nikaido
  • The Toronto premiere of Koki Mitani’s samurai satire THE KIYOSU CONFERENCE starring a who’s who of Japan’s top stars including Koji Yakusho, Yo Oizumi, Fumiyo Kohinata, Koichi Sato, Satoshi Tsumabuki, Tadano Asano, Kyoka Suzuki, Miki Nakatani
  • The Canadian premiere of the film Kinema Jumpo and Eiga Geijutsu magazines both called the best film of 2103: PRECOROSS’ MOTHER AND HER DAYS; a gentle drama with Ryo Iwamatsu and Harue Akagi
  • A TIFF encore presentation of the Sion Sono’s insane yakuza comedy WHY DON’T YOU PLAY IN HELL?, winner of TIFF’s Midnight Madness Award
  • The Toronto premiere of Nobu (Maiko Haaaan!) Mizuta’s wild comedy on Japanese manners, THE APOLOGY KING with Sadao Abe and Mao Inoue
  • The Toronto premiere of Tatsushi Omori’s searing drama THE RAVINE OF GOODBYE, winner of the Jury Prize at the 35th Moscow International Film Festival and featuring Yoko Maki’s unforgettable Japanese Academy Award winning performance.

The Toronto Japanese Film festival is dedicated to showcasing the finest Japanese films that have been recognized for excellence by Japanese audiences and critics, international film festival audiences and the Japanese Film Academy. The 2012 and 2013 festivals attracted large crowds, a broad demographic from all over the GTA and exit surveys indicating that audiences genuinely enjoyed the films. With the lectures, receptions, culinary seminars, gallery exhibitions and performances that were part of the two-week festival, our visitors numbered in the tens of thousands.

Director Daihachi Yoshida, attending last year’s festival to premiere his award winning film THE KIRISHIMA THING (Japanese Academy Award for Best Film, Best Director) commented:

“I am very thankful to the JCCC. This (festival) is definitely one of the reasons I am a filmmaker: to be able actually connect to the feelings of all these people in a place so distant from Japan. I will certainly do my best to be invited to the Toronto Japanese Film Festival again!”

- Daihachi Yoshida, Director of THE KIRISHIMA THING

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