Live-Action Barbara Film Screens Virtually at Fantasia Int'l Film Fest

posted on by Adriana Hazra
Virtual festival takes place from August 20-September 2

Montreal's 24th Fantasia International Film Festival announced on Tuesday that it will screen the live-action adaptation of Osamu Tezuka's Barbara manga this year. The film will have its North American debut at the virtual film festival, which will stream from August 20 to September 2.   The Fantasia International Film Festival describes the film:

One night, a famous novelist encounters a young, seemingly homeless woman in an overpass tunnel. He brings her home, which sets him on a path of increasingly bizarre encounters. TEZUKA'S BARBARA is the abrasively jazzy adaptation of Osamu Tezuka's adult manga of the same name. Directed by Makoto Tezuka (LEGEND OF THE STARDUST BROTHERS) and lensed by Christopher Doyle (IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE, HERO), this film – released as part of Tezuka's 90th anniversary celebration – mixes pinku-style erotica with an examination of the creative impulse and a dash of the occult, thus unveiling the lesser-known dark side of the ASTRO BOY creator and anime maestro.

The live-action film Barbara premiered at the 32nd Tokyo International Film Festival in November.

The film celebrates the late manga creator's 90th birth year in 2018. The film is an international co-production between Third Window Films, Japan's TheFool (River's Edge), and Germany's Rapid Eye Movies (Ruined Heart). Tezuka's son Macoto Tezka directed the film, and the project marked his first time directing a live-action film adaptation of one of his father's works. Christopher Doyle, who is known for his work on Wong Kar-Wai's Hong Kong films, was in charge of cinematography. Post production of the film was handled in Germany, and the main visual and trailer for the film were designed in the U.K.

The film stars Fumi Nikaidō as the title character and Goro Inagaki as writer Yosuke Mikura. Other cast members include Shizuka Ishibashi, Kiyohiko Shibukawa, Eri Watanabe, Ryousuke Ohtani, Minami, MoeMi Katayama, and Issay.

The film will release in Japan in 2020.

Tezuka's original manga ran in Shogakukan's Big Comic magazine from 1973 to 1974. North American publisher Digital Manga held a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign in 2012 to fund an English release of the original manga. Digital Manga's English release of the manga was nominated for an Eisner Award in 2013.

Masaaki Yuasa and Science SARU's Ride Your Wave film won the "Axis: The Satoshi Kon Award for Excellence in Animation" award for Best Animated Feature at Fantasia International Film Festival last year, while Fuminori Kizaki and Polygon Pictures' Human Lost film won the the "Axis: The Satoshi Kon Award for Excellence in Animation" award as a Special Mention.

Source: Press release

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