Toronto Japanese Film Festival Announces 2017 Award Winners

Announcing Our Festival Award Winners

to be given top honors
at the 6th annual Toronto Japanese Film Festival
on Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Yoshihiro Nakamura to be recognized
with the Special Director’s Award
on Wednesday, June 28, 2017

The 6th annual Toronto Japanese Film Festival is pleased to announce that the winner of the festival’s 2017 Grand Jury Prize is IN THIS CORNER OF THE WORLD  (Kono Sekai no Katasumi ni) directed by Sunao Katabuchi.

Katabuchi-san’s beautiful but heart breaking tale based on Fumiyo Kono’s award-winning manga received the highest ranking among all jury members, some of whom will be present and make comments before the Canadian Premiere screening on Tuesday, June 27, 7pm.

The Grand Jury Prize which comes with a cash award of 100,000 yen and certificate  is presented to the feature selected as best film among this year’s festival offerings.  Films are reviewed by an Official Jury made up of filmmakers, industry professionals, writers and educators.

IN THIS CORNER OF THE WORLD was also the recipient of Best Film at the 2017 Hiroshima International Film Festival and was awarded the 2017 Japan Academy Prize for Best Animated Film.

IN THIS CORNER OF THE WORLD screens on Tuesday, June 27, 7pm at the TJFF as a Canadian Premiere.

The 2017 Toronto Japanese Film Festival Official Jury members are:

  • Todd Brown founded ScreenAnarchy (originally TwitchFilm) in 2004 and the site quickly established itself as the online world’s leading source for international, independent, cult, arthouse and genre film news, review and discussion. Todd is also Director of International Programming at Fantastic Fest, and a partner at XYZ Films.
  • Dr. Michael Raine is a professor of Japanese Cinema at the University of Western Ontario. He has written and lectured extensively on Japanese Film. He is currently working on The Cinema of High Economic Growth: New Japanese Cinemas, 1955-1964, on the Japanese New Wave in the context of the youth-oriented program pictures of the 1950s and 1960s.
  • Jim Slotek is a movie and TV critic, who wrote for the Toronto Sun for more than three decades. He has several critical writing awards, a Gemini nomination for comedy writing and has interviewed literally thousands of celebrities.  He was the co-writer of El Dia, La Noche y los Muertos, a documentary on the Mexican Day Of The Dead that played in film festivals internationally. He teaches critical writing and the craft of writing as part of Centennial College’s Arts Journalism program and recently founded the website
  • Yael Strasberg is the Acquisitions Manager for Entertainment One Films Canada, the Canadian division of the industry’s largest independent, multi-territory film distributor. Yael also has a specialization in working with up and coming talent, identifying and developing relationships with new Canadian writers, directors and producers and helping them to navigate the Canadian film industry. Prior to joining eOne in 2008, Yael held positions at Sony BMG Films and Untitled Entertainment in New York.
  • Katsura Sunshine (桂 三輝 Katsura Sanshain) was born in Toronto and is currently a highly popular traditional Japanese rakugo comic storyteller and television personality in Japan. He is also known in Toronto for his musical version of Aristophanes’ Clouds, Lysistrata, Assemblywomen, The Tokyo Affair, as well as two operas for children, Allegra’s Magic Flute, and xxxxxxx

The Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre and the founders of the Toronto Japanese Film Festival will also recognize and celebrate Yoshihiro Nakamura’s newest film MUMON – LAND OF STEALTH (Shinobi No Kuni) and the consistent excellence in the performance of his films in the Toronto Japanese Film Festival with the Special Director’s Award. Nakamura-san will receive the award in-person prior to Wednesday, June 28 screening  of his light-heated ninja vs. samurai battle epic.

The Toronto Japanese Film Festival’s Kobayashi Audience Choice Award will also be announced and presented at the festival’s closing night on Wednesday, June 28, 2017.

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