CoFesta, World Cinema to make debut

The Tokyo Film Festival will unspool Oct. 20-28 and see big changes at the top and in the program, organizers revealed Monday.

The biggest change is the previously announced Japanese Intl. Contents Festival — or CoFesta — a 40-day series of events and markets focusing on pics, toons, games, music and other local contents.The goal, said fest chairman Tsuguhiko Kadokawa, is to “spread Japanese films and other contents throughout Asia and the world.”

Meanwhile, to strengthen the festival’s role as a hub of fests in Japan, the organizers have added a new section, World Cinema, that focuses on foreign pics, including prize-winners at Cannes, Venice and other major events and those that have yet to receive their Japanese preem.

Most of the 10 or so pics to be selected will be from the U.S. and Europe, though no one genre will be favored.

Another new section is Tokyo in Focus, which examines how Tokyo has been depicted on celluloid in post-WWII cinema. One aim is to publicize the city by uncovering aspects that go beyond its stereotypes as a crowded, polluted and expensive city. Nearly 50 pics will unspool that have Tokyo as their setting.

The former Winds of Asia section has a new programmer, Kenji Ishizaka; a new name, Winds of Asia-Middle East; and a new focus. Instead of concentrating on East Asian cinema, Ishizaka and his colleagues intend to broaden the reach to include pics from South Asia and the Middle East.

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