Announcement of the new Director of Programming for TOKYO FILMeX

We are happy to announce that KAMIYA Naoki has been assigned as the new director of programming at the International Film Festival “TOKYO FILMeX”.

Our new director of programming, Mr. KAMIYA, has been a part of TOKYO FILMeX since the very first edition back in 2000. He has supported the festival directors and has participated in the selection process of the films. He left FILMeX briefly in 2019, but has returned as the director of programming.

Naoki Kamiya
◎Comment from KAMIYA Naoki
The conditions around movies are drastically changing and that change has accelerated during the pandemic. However, I still feel that film festival holds a certain role. Roles such as maintaining quality, diversity, and becoming a place of socialization for the film industry and those that love cinema. I believe these are the most important roles. We can imagine many restrictions during the pandemic, but I will continue to search with my colleagues who share my motivations, on what we can do for cinema and what roles should the festival hold.


◎KAMIYA Naoki Profile
Born 1976. Became involved with TOKYO FILMeX from the first edition in 2000 while in graduate school. From the second edition, he selected films and invited guests as the programming staff. He left the festival in October 2019, and joined Kino Films and Kino Cinéma under the Kinoshita Group, where he bought and marketed foreign films. In May 2021, he returned to TOKYO FILMeX as Director of Programming. He has also translated into Japanese over 20 films such as, “Dracula: Pages from a Virgin’s Diary” (Dir. Guy MADDIN), “Delta” (Dir. Kornél MUNDRUCZÓ), “Mekong Hotel” (Dir. Apichatpong WEERASETHAKUL), “Monte” (Dir. Amir NADERI), “The Seen and Unseen” (Dir. Kamila ANDINI), “Your Face” (Dir. TSAI Ming-Liang), and “In Between Dying” (Dir. Hilal BAYDAROV). He has also co-written the book “Kono Eiga wo Mireba Sekai ga Wakaru”.


Unstable times continue under the pandemic, but in order for TOKYO FILMeX to smoothly operate a film festival, we are accepting donations and support. Please consider a monthly donation, starting from 1,000 JPY. You may receive a return of up to 40% via tax exemption by filing a tax return when donating to NPO organization (Example: You will receive 4,000 JPY in return when donating for a year).

We ask for your continued support for TOKYO FILMeX and our new director of programming Mr. KAMIYA.


◎Request for Support (Donations) You may receive benefits such as tax returns when donating to NPO organizations.

◎「22nd TOKYO FILMeX」(Planned Dates: 10/30-11/7, 2021)Calling for competition films(Until 7/31)

Official Website:
Contact: TOKYO

Change of Program Director / Dates for TOKYO FILMeX 2022

【Change of Program Director】
TOKYO FILMeX will replace the Program Director from Shozo Ichiyama after his 21 years of contribution from the first edition of the festival (He will remain as the chairperson of TOKYO FILMeX).
The new Program Director has been decided already, we will announce this matter officially once it’s prepared.

Although it will be a big change to have a new Program Director, TOKYO FILMeX will continue to support and showcase filmmakers and their films that challenge “for the bright future of cinema”.


【Festival dates for TOKYO FILMeX 2022】
This year, TOKYO FILMeX 2022 will take place from October 30th – November 7th. Same as last year, overlapping the dates with Tokyo Film Festival which will be held from October 30th – November 8th.

We will program the films made by Asian filmmakers, and we will be accepting submissions as below:
Competition: until the end of July
Special Screening: until the end of June

Lineup Announced: Special Screening

Special Screening

The Special Screenings section presents 13 films from Asia and around the world.  



Love Looming
 Love Mooning【opening film】
Japan / 2020 / 102min.
Director:MANDA Kunitoshi
Takashi, who runs a mental clinic, has never recovered from the shock of his wife’s death. One day, Ayako, a mysterious patient comes to his clinic…. A down to earth love story by MANDA Kunitoshi, casting NAKAMURA Toru for the first time after “The Kiss” (2007). Starring SUGINO Kiki and SAITOH Takumi.
©︎Love Mooning Film Partners


It Must Be Heaven
 It Must Be Heaven【closing film】
France, Qatar, Germany, Turkey, Palestine / 2019 / 102min.
Director:Elia SULEIMAN
A comical film raising questions about nationality and identity. Director Elia SULEIMAN himself plays the role of a film director who continues to be stuck in Palestine even when traveling to Paris and New York. Screened in Cannes Film Festival 2019 and won the FIPRESCI award.


Canada / 1996 / 100min.
Director: David CRONENBERG
Adapted from a novel by James Graham BALLARD of the same name, the film portrays people who gets aroused by car crash. Despite its controversial theme, it won the 1996 Cannes Film Festival Grand Prix Spécial du Jury and is known as David CONENBERG’s masterpiece. TOKYO FILMeX will screen a revised 4K version shown in last year’s Venice International Film Festival.


Denise Ho
 Denise Ho: Becoming the Song
USA / 2020 / 83min.
Director: Sue WILLIAMS
A documentary on Hong Kong’s singer and actor Denise HO, who played the main role in Johnnie TO’s “Life Without Principle” (2011). Includes many aspects of Ho’s life including his powerful concert footage, HO coming out as gay, and his support for the Umbrella Movement.


Laila in Haifa
 Laila in Haifa
Israel, France / 2020 / 99min.
Director: Amos GITAI
Set in Haifa, Israel’s third capital and Amos GITAI’s home town, this ensemble film explores the possibility of Jews and Arabs living together by portraying the people gathered in a nightclub. The cinematographer of “A Tramway in Jerusalem”, Éric Gautier held the camera for this film again. Screened in Venice International Film Festival competition section.


France, Cambodia / 2020 / 88min.
Director: Rithy PANH
The atomic bomb in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Nazi’s holocaust, and the massacre in Cambodia under Pol POT. Rity PANH’s latest work portrays these 3 tragedies with montages of numerous footages. Screened in Berlin International Film Festival competition section and won the best documentary award.


Taiwan / 2020 / 127min.
Director: TSAI Ming Liang
Kan, who lives in the quite suburbs, heads out to the city to call a masseur for his neck pain. An immigrant worker visits Kan in his hotel…. TSAI Ming Liang’s latest work portrays two men in contrasting conditions. Won the Teddy Jury Award at the Berlin International Film Festival.


 Septet: The Story of Hong Kong
Hong Kong / 2020 / 113min.
Director: Ann HUI, Johnnie TO, TSUI Hark, Sammo HUNG, YUEN Wo Ping, Ringo LAM, Patrick TAM
7 directors from Hong Kong came together under Johnnie TO to portray the lives of Hong Kong people from their perspective. Starring Simon YAM, LAM Suet, YUEN Wah. It became Ringo LAM’s posthumous work. Selected for “Cannes 2020.”


Swimming out
 Swimming Out Till The Sea Turns Blue
China / 2020 / 111min.
Director: JIA Zhang-ke
A documentary following 70 years of change in modern China through interviews with literary figures. 4 writers of the same generation as YU Hua (writer of “To Live”), talk about their experience and their views on Chinese society and culture. Screened in Berlin International Film Festival.


The Calming
 The Calming
China / 2020 / 89min.
Director: SONG Fang
Director SONG Fang’s second work after well acclaimed first film “Memories Look at Me” (2012). Portrays a female artist who regains her “calmness” through conversations with her friends and family as she travels from Tokyo, Echigo Yuzawa and Hong Kong. Starring QI Xi and WATANABE Makiko. Won the CICAE award at Berlin International Film Festival.


the woman who ran
 The Woman Who Ran
Korea / 2020 / 77min.
Director: HONG Sang-soo
HONG Sang-soo’s latest work which won the Best Director Award at this year’s Berlin International Film Festival. Portrays a woman visiting her 3 friends living in the suburbs while her husband is away on a business trip. The intimate atmosphere of female friendship is always disturbed by the presence of men. The cat’s acting is also worthy of a look.


 Minamata Mandala
Japan / 2020 / 369min.
Director: HARA Kazuo
The Minamata disease is known as one of Japan’s four major disease caused by pollution. This documentary followed its patient and its lawsuit for 15 years and was completed after 3 years of editing. An epic covering the progress of the lawsuit, patient’s daily life and scholarly studies of the Minamata disease.


 The Work and Days (in the Shiotani Basin)
USA, Sweden, Japan, UK / 2020 / 480min.
Director: C.W. WINTER, Anders EDSTRÖM
Portrayed a year of daily life of people living in the Kyoto mountains. Won the Best Film Prize at the Encounters section of the Berlin International Film Festival. Co-directed by WINTER and EDSTRÖM, it is their second feature-length collaboration since “The Anchorage”. Most of the actors are actual people living in the mountains, but also star KASE Ryo.


【Special Program】 The Satin Slipper
Portugal, France / 1985 / 410分
Director: Manoel de OLIVEIRA
<This Film Will be screened after the festival, from 22nd November.>
Screening dates & venues
Nov. 22th Yurakucho Asahi Hall
26th Nov. – 28th Nov. Athenee Fracais Cultural Center


Lineup Announced: Filmmaker in Focus: Elia SULEIMAN

Filmmaker in Focus: Elia SULEIMAN

Along with Elia SULEIMAN’s latest work “It Must Be Heaven” which will be screened as the closing film of TOKYO FILMeX, we will screen 3 featured films that the director has directed so far.  



Chronicle of a Disappearance
Chronicle of a Disappearance
Palestine / 1996 / 84 min
Director:Elia SULEIMAN
SULEIMAN’s first feature film, which won the Best First Film Prize at the Venice International Film Festival and paved his way for international acclaim. SULEIMAN’s style, which sketches people’s daily life while also poking at political and societal concern, can be already seen.


Divine Intervention
Divine Intervention
France, Palestine / 2002 / 92 min
Director:Elia SULEIMAN
Portrayed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with humor through a Palestinian couple divided by the borders of Israel and Palestine. Won both Jury Prize and FIPRESCI prize at Cannes International Film Festival. The original title translates to “The Hand of God.”


The Time That Remains
The Time That Remains
Palestine, France / 2009 / 105 min
Director:Elia SULEIMAN
SULEIMAN’s semi-autobiographical film which portrays the Israeli-Palestinian conflict across time through his father who was a member of the Palestinian resistance force during the founding of Israel in 1948, his mother who was forced live separately because of that fact, and SULEIMAN himself who visits his home town Nazareth. Screened at Cannes International Film Festival.


Elia SULEIMAN, Director
Born in Nazareth on July 28, 1960, Elia SULEIMAN lived in New York between 1981 and 1993. During this period, he directed his two first short films, Introduction to the “End of an Argument” and “Homage by Assassination”, which won him numerous prizes. In 1994, he moved to Jerusalem where the European Commission charged him with establishing a Cinema and Media department at Birzeit University. His feature debut, “Chronicle of a Disappearance”, won the Best First Film award at the 1996 Venice Film Festival. In 2002, “Divine Intervention” won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival and the Best Foreign Film prize at the European Awards in Rome. His feature, “The Time That Remains”, screened In Competition at the 2009 Cannes film Festival. In 2012, Elia Suleiman directed the short film “Diary of a Beginner”, part of the portmanteau feature “7 Days in Havana”, which screened that year in Un Certain Regard at the Cannes Film Festival.



Lineup Announced: TOKYO FILMeX 2020 Competition

“Love Mooning” by MANDA Kunitoshi will open the festival, and the closing film will be “It Must Be Heaven” by Elia SULEIMAN. New films by the directors close to TOKYO FILMeX such as HONG Sang-soo, Rithy PANH, TSAI Ming Liang, Amos GITAI and JIA Zhang-ke will be presented in the Special Screening program. In the TOKYO FILMeX Competition section, we present 12 new films by the best emerging filmmakers in Asia.
Stay in tune, we will announce the screening schedule and the ticket system in the near future.




TOKYO FILMeX Competition Jury

press conference
MANDA Kunitoshi( The Chairperson of the Jury / Japan / Film Director, Scriptwriter, Producer )
Chris FUJIWARA( United States / Film Critic )
SAKAMOTO Abi( Japan / Programmer )
Eric NYARI( United States / Producer )
Tom MES ( Netherlands / Film Critic )



TOKYO FILMeX Competition

This year’s TOKYO FILMeX Competition will present 12 new films by the best emerging filmmakers in Asia. The Jury that consists of five international film professionals will judge the films in this program, and the following prizes will be announced at the award ceremony on the evening of November 7th. All films in the section will be screened with English Subtitles. (★=first feature)


Should the Wind Drop
 Should The Wind Drop ★
France, Armenia, Belgium / 2020 / 100min.
Director: Nora MARTIROSYAN
Nagorno-Karabakh is a district that shares a border with Armenia and claims independence from Azerbaijan. The film follows a French technician who investigates an airport that was destroyed in the war and rebuilt after the ceasefire. Selected for Cannes 2020, this is Nora MARTIROSYAN’s feature directorial debut.


In Between Dying
 In Between Dying
Azerbaijan, Mexico, America / 2020 / 88min.
Director: Hilal Baydarov
This is the second feature film by Hilal BAYDAROV, an up-and-coming Azerbaijani filmmaker who trained under Tarr BELA. Set during a day’s journey depicted against the desolate Central Asian landscape, the film follows the protagonist as he is chased by the shadow of death wherever he goes and throws various mysteries at the viewer. Screened in competition at the Venice International Film Festival.


Careless Crime
 Careless Crime
Iran / 2020 / 139min.
Director: Shahram MOKRI
In 1979, on the eve of the Iranian Revolution, movie theaters were burned down by mobs rejecting Western culture. Forty years later, four men hatch a plan to burn down movie theaters…. An intelligent adaptation of an outlandish idea, this is director MOKRI’s forth film. Screened in the Orizzonti section at the Venice International Film Festival.


Yellow Cat
 Yellow Cat
Kazkhstan, France / 2020 / 90min.
Director: Adilkhan YELZHANOV
Set in the steppes of Kazakhstan, a comedic portrayal of an ex-con’s struggle to escape the underground world and open a cinema. This is the latest film from the brilliant filmmaker Adilkhan YELZHANOV, whose many works have been consistently selected by international film festivals. Screened in the Orizzonti section at the Venice International Film Festival.


India / 2020 / 98min.
Director: Ivan AYR
Set in north Indian Kashmir, the film depicts the anguish of a veteran truck driver who works to compensate his wife’s family for her death while suffering from severe back pain. Screened in the Orizzonti section at the Venice International Film Festival, this is the second film by director Ivan AYR, whose debut film “Soni” (2018) was highly acclaimed.


 Aswang ★
Philippines / 2019 / 85min.
Director: Alyx Ayn ARUMPAC
Set in north Indian Kashmir, the film depicts the anguish of a veteran truck driver who works to compensate his wife’s family for her death while suffering from severe back pain. Screened in the Orizzonti section at the Venice International Film Festival, this is the second film by director Ivan AYR, whose debut film “Soni” (2018) was highly acclaimed.


The Silent Forest
 The Silent Forest ★
Taiwan / 2020 / 104min.
Director: KO Chen-Nien
A boy who has transferred to a school for students with disability witnesses a “game” on a school bus. This is just the beginning of a brutal reality. Based on a real incident that occurred in Taiwan, this film is the directorial debut of director KO Chen-nien. Screened as the opening film at the Taipei Film Festival.


The Best is Yet to Come
 The Best Is Yet To Come ★
China / 2020 / 115min.
Director: WANG Jing
Based on a real-life newspaper reporter who sounded the alarm on many social issues, this film follows the rags to riches story of a young man who matures as a reporter. This is the directorial debut of WANG Jing, who has been assistant director to JIA Zhang-ke since “A Touch of Sin” (2013). Screened in the Orizzonti section at the Venice International Film Festival.


Any Crybabies Around
 Any Crybabies Around?
Japan / 2020 / 108min.
Director: SATO Takuma
SATO Takuma’s theatrical debut film depicts the struggles of a man who works to preserve the traditional culture of “Namahage” on the Oga Peninsula in Akita Prefecture as he tries to regain the bond with his family that he lost due to his past mistakes. The film stars NAKANO Taiga and YOSHIOKA Riho. It had its world premiere in competition at the San Sebastián Film Festival.


The Blue Danube
 The Blue Danube
Japan / 2020 / 105min.
Director: IKEDA Akira
In a fictional town where war with the neighboring town across the river is ingrained into everyday life, people experience moments of happiness and hardship. Wrapped in a unique sense of humor, this is the fourth feature length film by IKEDA Akira, who made his debut with “Anatomy of a Paper Clip” (2013).


A Balance
 A Balance
Japan / 2020 / 152min.
Director: HARUMOTO Yujiro
Documentary director Yuko investigates the suicide of a high school girl. As Yuko gets closer to the truth of the case, her father, who runs a cram school, exposes a shocking revelation… This is the second film directed by HARUMOTO Yuijro, following his debut film, “Going the Distance” (2016). Starring TAKIUCHI Kumi, MITSUISHI Ken, KAWAI Yuumi, and UMEDA Masahiro.
(c)2020 映画工房春組


okinawa santos
Japan / 2020 / 90min.
The long-awaited new documentary from MATSUBAYASHI Yoju of “The Horses of Fukushima” (2013). During World War II, many Japanese people were forced to emigrate to Santos, Brazil. MATSUBAYASHI draws attention to the fact that 60% of the migrants were from Okinawa. Based on testimonies from interviewees, this film reveals the hidden historical relationship between Okinawa and Brazil.



Announcement: TOKYO FILMeX 2020

TOKYO FILMeX will continue to prepare and search for the best way to hold a film festival amidst the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic. However, the effects of the pandemic are big, and we will hold the festival in a different format from before.

We announce today that compared to previous editions, the 21st TOKYO FILMeX will 1) be advance its festival period by 2 weeks, 2) change its venue and hold the festival within roughly the same period as the 33rd Tokyo International Film Festival (The festival dates will also shorten to 7 days).


Outline of 21st TOKYO FILMeX

Dates: Oct. 30 (Fri) to Nov. 5 (Thu)

Venue: TOHO CINEMAS Chanter

Human Trust Cinema Yurakucho (Late night screenings)

Yurakucho Asahi Hall (Opening)

Programs: TOKYO FILMeX Competitions, Special Screenings

※All informations are as of August 6 and is subject to change without notice.


Comment from director Ichiyama

This year, we have decided to hold 21st TOKYO FILMeX roughly at the same time as the 33rd Tokyo International Film Festival.

We heard that Tokyo International Film Festival is headed for great changes under chariman ANDO Hiroyasu and festival director HISAMATSU Takeo, and have deeply sympathized with the idea of “holding a cooperation similar to that of the Director’s Fortnight which holds its own independence within the Cannes Film Festival.”

With various media outlets today, we expect a synergistic effect in making information available under the Tokyo International Film Festival’s idea of “Mutual Strengthening of the Film Industry”.

With the world under a pandemic this year, we will hold the 21st TOKYO FILMex with changes from Oct 30.

We ask kindly for your support and understanding.


Programs with no English subtitles

We are very sorry, the following programs will not have English subtitles;

11/24 Sun. 21:15 “3 FACES”
11/25 Mon.13:00 “Suzhou River”
11/29 Fri. 15:30 “Breathless”
12/01 Sun. 10:00 “WOLF’S CALLING”(no dialogue)

TOKYO FILMeX Competition screening line up announced!

TOKYO FILMeX Competition

This year’s TOKYO FILMeX Competition will present 10 new films by the best emerging filmmakers in Asia. All films in the section will be screened with English Subtitles. (★=first feature)  


Shadow of Water
 Shadow of Water
India / 2019 / 116min.
Director:Sanal Kumar SASIDHARAN


Last Night I Saw You Smiling
 Last Night I Saw You Smiling
Cambodia, France / 2019 / 77min.
Director: NEANG Kavich


Wet Season
 Wet Season
Singapore / 2019 / 103min.
Director: Anthony CHEN


Philippine/ 2019 / 126min.
Director: Raymund Ribay GUTIERREZ


Nina Wu
Taiwan, Malaysia, Myanmer / 2019 / 102min.
Director: Midi Z


China / 2019 / 102min.
Director: Pema Tseden



Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains
 Dwelling in the Fuchun Mountains
China / 2019 / 154min.
Director: GU Xiaogang


Height of the Wave
 Height of the Wave
South Korea / 2019 / 94min.
Director: PARK Jung-Bum


It Stopped Raining
 It Stopped Raining
Japan / 2019 / 99min.
Director: NAKAGAWA Ryutaro


Japan / 2019 / 94min.
Director: HIROSE Nanako




Special Screening / FILMeX Classic screening line up announced!

Special Screening

The Special Screenings section presents 6 films from Asia and around the world  

Shadow Play
 The Shadow Play【opening film】
China / 2018 / 125min.
Director: LOU Ye
(c) DREAM FACTORY, Travis Wei


Coming Home Again
 Coming Home Again【closing film】
America, Korea / 2019 / 85min.
Director: Wayne WANG


The Perfect Candidate
 The Perfect Candidate
Saudi Arabia, Germany / 2019 / 101min.
Director: Haifaa Al MANSOUR


Vitalina Varela
 Vitalina Varela
Portugal / 2019 / 124min.
Director: Pedro COSTA


3 faces
 3 Faces
Iran / 2018 / 101min.
Director: Jafar PANAHI


Documentary on the Shadow Play
 A Documentary on the Shadow Play
China / 2019 / 94min.
Director: MA Yingli



FILMeX Classic


The Cow
 The Cow
Iran / 1969 / 105min.
Director: Dariush MERHRJUI


 HHH: A Portrait of Hou Hsiao-Hsein
France, Taiwan / 1997 / 91min.
Director: Olivier ASSAYAS


Flowers of Shanghai
Flowers of Shanghai
Taiwan / 1998 / 130min.
Director: HOU Hsiao Hsein
©1998/2019 侯孝賢映像製作社・松竹株式会社


The Wheel of Life
The Wheel of Life
Taiwan / 1983 / 104min.
Director: King HU, LEE Hsing, PAI Ching-Jui


The Wheel of Life
Raining in the Mountain
Taiwan / 1979 / 120min.
Director: King HU