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Kore-eda Hirokazu, the Japanese auteur celebrated for “Like Father Like Son,” has begun production of a drama about a family of small-time crooks. The untitled picture will be ready for mid-year and will be released in Japan in June through Gaga Corporation.

The film is produced by Fuji Television Network, Inc., Gaga, and AOI Pro. International sales are handled by Gaga within Asia and by Wild Bunch for the rest of the world.

The story, which the director has been developing for some 10 years, involves a small girl who is taken in by a family of shoplifters. Lily Franky (“Like Father Like Son”) plays the father, Ando Sakura plays the mother. The film involves two child stars Sasaki Miyu and Jyo Kairi (the family’s existing son) making their film debuts.

Koreeda’s last film “The Third Murder” united him with another “Like Father Like Son” star Masahara Fukuyama. It played in the Venice and Toronto festivals last year and in Palm Springs, last week.

Koreeda is attached as executive producer of “Ten Years Japan,” an art house franchise in which a small number of directors shoot a vision of their home country ten years into the future. The concept originated with 2015 omnibus film “Ten Years” from Hong Kong.

Two of Koreeda’s previous films are currently set for English-language remake. “Like Father Like Son” is with Dreamworks. “Nobody Knows” is with Glasshouse Pictures.