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Japan Touring Film Programme Continues in U.K. and Ireland

posted on by Andrew Osmond
Screenings include anime The House of the Lost on the Cape, and live-action manga adaptations, Will I Be Single Forever? and Liar x Liar

The Japan Foundation Touring Film Programme is continuing to run in Britain and Ireland until March 31. The films include the anime film The House of the Lost on the Cape; the details of the venues and screenings are given here and confirmed screenings are listed below.

The film will be screened in Japanese with subtitles and is described by the festival as follows:

"Cruelly mistreated by fortune, two young girls – seventeen-year-old Yui (voiced by Mana Ashida) and eight-year-old Hiyori (voiced by Sari Awano) – have both become separated from their families. Lost, with no place to go and trying to find somewhere to call home, they come across a strange old lady, Kiwa (voiced by Shinobu Otake), who offers them her hospitality at her shabby but well-kept home – a mayoiga (old Japanese folkloric concept). The house's close proximity to the sea, and the opportunity to start afresh that it brings, slowly breathe new life into the girls. Then, one day, mysterious beings referred to by Kiwa as ‘fushigitto’ begin showing up…

"Ten years after the Great East Japan Earthquake in Tohoku, as a result of which many people lost their lives and homes, Shinya Kawatsura directs this brand-new animation feature adapted from Sachiko Kashiwaba's novel, paying tribute to the area and its people. This is a heart-warming story of new beginnings and childhood wonder."

The anime, which is set in Iwate prefecture, joins Bakuten!! and Hula Fulla Dance as part of a larger initiative to promote Iwate, Miyagi, and Fukushima, respectively. The "Zutto Ōen Project 2011 + 10..." is in remembrance of the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami 10 years ago.

Shinya Kawatsura (Non Non Biyori, Sagrada Reset, Kokoro Connect) directed the anime at david production, and Reiko Yoshida (K-ON!, Violet Evergarden, Liz and the Blue Bird) wrote the script. Kamogawa handled the film's character design, and Yuri Miyauchi composed the music.

Kashiwaba released the original novel in 2015, and it won the 2016 Noma Award for Juvenile Fiction. Kashiwaba also penned the Chikashitru Kara no Fushigi na Tabi (Strange Journey From The Basement) that inspired Keiichi Hara's The Wonderland film.

As of writing, screenings of The House of the Lost on the Cape have been confirmed at Firstsite in Colchester on Saturday February 26 at 1 p.m.; Storyhouse in Chester on Sunday February 27 at 3.30 p.m.; Dundee Contemporary Arts on Saturday March 5 at 1 p.m.; the QUAD cinema in Derby on Sunday March 6 at 2.30 p.m.; Queen's Film Theatre in Belfast on Sunday March 6 at 3 p.m.; Tyneside in Newcastle Upon Tyne at 6.30 p.m.; Warwick Arts Centre on Sunday March 12 at 12 noon; Hyde Park Picture House in Leeds on Monday March 14 at 8.30 p.m.; Showroom Cinema in Sheffield on Wednesday March 16 at 5.45 p.m.; Brewery Arts Centre in Kendal on Wednesday March 16 at 8.30 p.m.; Broadway Cinema in Nottingham on Saturday March 19 at 3 p.m.; Plymouth Arts Cinema on Tuesday March 22 at 6 p.m.; Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff on Sunday March 27; and Exeter Phoenix on Wednesday March 30 at 8 p.m.

The Japan Touring Film Programme will also include a live-action film adaptation of Mari Okazaki's Will I Be Single Forever? (Zutto Dokushin de Iru Tsumori?) manga. In the film, television announcer and actress Minami Tanaka stars as Mami Honda, a 36-year-old single writer who became famous overnight thanks to a popular essay she wrote a decade ago. Honda now seeks "a form of happiness for herself." The film's screening page is here.

Live-action television series director Momoko Fukuda (Kakafukaka) directed the film, with a script by Fumi Tsubota. Yūki Saitō was the assistant director.

Viz Media released the manga in 2018, and it described the story:

Mami is 36 and unmarried, and the entire world seems to be telling her she must be miserable. But is she? Does she really need a ring on her finger to be happy when she has a job she loves and friends who support her? A collection of interconnected stories that explores the hazards and joys of unmarried life through the eyes of three single ladies.

Okazaki acknowledged that the film's story differs from the manga's, but she hopes it gently encourages the viewers and lifts their spirits a bit after watching. Okazaki launched the manga in Shodensha's Feel Young magazine in November 2014, and ended it in October 2015. The manga's premise is based on Mami Amamiya's essay of the same name. Shodensha published one compiled book volume for the manga.

As of writing, there are screenings scheduled at the Queen's Film Theatre in Belfast on Saturday February 26 at 3 p.m.; Plymouth Arts Cinemas on Tuesday March 8 at 5.45 p.m.; Broadway Cinema in Nottingham on Friday March 18 at 8 p.m.; and the Filmhouse in Edinburgh on Thursday March 24.

The Japan Touring Film Programme will also include the live-action film version of Renjuro Kindaichi's Liar x Liar manga. The film's screening page is here.

The manga centres on 20-year-old Minato, who one day decides to wear her friend's high school uniform just for fun. She runs into her stepbrother Tōru, who is only a little younger than she is. Minato manages to convince him that she is a completely different person, and Tōru asks her out. Eventually, Tōru begins to fall in love with Minato's high school alter-ego. Saiji Yakumo (live-action Ankoku Joshi) directed the film, with a script by Yuichi Tokunaga (live-action Kaguya-sama: Love is War).

Kindaichi launched the manga in Dessert in 2010, and ended the series in 2017. Kodansha published 10 compiled book volumes for the manga. The manga ranked #10 in Takarajimasha Inc.'s Kono Manga ga Sugoi ranking in 2012, and was nominated for the 39th annual Kodansha Manga Awards in 2015.

As of writing, there are screenings scheduled at Firstsite in Colchester on Saturday March 5 at 1 p.m.; and Macrobert Arts Centre in Sterling on Monday March 21 at 7.45 p.m.

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