Yanagawa,” which this week won the top prize at the Vesoul International Film Festival of Asian Cinemas in France, has been set as the opening title of the 17th Osaka Asian Film Festival in Japan. The festival, which runs as an in-person event, March 10-20, 2022 will close with multinational co-production “Miss Osaka.”

Yanagawa, was directed by Korean-Chinese auteur Zhang Lu, and was filmed in China and Japan. Telling a tale of search for East-Asian identity, the film is Zhang’s first mainly Chinese-language picture in the eleven years since “Dooman River.”

It had its world premiere screening at Busan and was subsequently the opening film for the Pingyao International Film Festival. It is expected to receive a Japanese theatrical release later this year, though a date has not yet been finalized.

A unique Danish-Norwegian-Japanese co-production, directed by Daniel Dencik, “Miss Osaka” is a drama with mystery and thriller elements that emerge in a story where a young woman searching for an identity adopts one from someone else. It was shot on location in the forests of Norway and the neon-lit streets of Osaka.

It features an international cast that is led by rising European stars Victoria Carmen Sonne and Mikkel Boe Folsgaard, Japan’s Moriyama Mirai, Abe Junko and Minami Kaho. The film is co-produced by “Drive My Car” and “Wife of a Spy” producer Yamamoto Teruhisa alongside Denmark’s Michael Haslund-Christensen.

The festival will unveil its full lineup later this month and will also reveal details of an online program component that runs March 3 – 21.