Chairman / Festival Director From the Chairman
Hiroyasu Ando

As COVID-19 sweeps across the world, many film festivals have had to cancel, postpone, or limit the scope and scale of their programs. We, too, have been wrestling with the dilemma of whether or not to hold this year's Tokyo International Film Festival.

It is only natural that our society should aim to reinvigorate economic activity. But we also need something that enriches our hearts and gives us courage as we face the spread of this infectious disease. We believe that this is what the arts and culture provide, and that cinema, an art form enjoyed by many, has a vital role to play.

The Tokyo International Film Festival has therefore decided to organize a physical event this year while taking adequate measures to prevent the further spread of infection, so that we may once again remind our audiences of the joy of watching movies in the theaters. We hope to reinforce the power of cinema by deepening ties between the Japanese and international film communities.

Of course, given the circumstances this year, opening a physical festival will require many restrictions, which will call for much creativity. As it will be difficult to invite international jury members, guests, and journalists, in place of our International Competition, we have decided to establish the Tokyo Premiere 2020 section, which will present outstanding films from both Japan and abroad. We also plan to make effective use of online platforms.


We also plan to present events in which we can hold discussions about how to make way for a new culture for the visual medium amidst and beyond the pandemic.
We humbly request your continued support and cooperation this year.

Hiroyasu Ando
Chairman
33rd Tokyo International Film Festival
Profile:

Hiroyasu Ando was born in 1944. After graduating from University of Tokyo in 1970, he entered Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. After serving as a diplomat in the US, the Philippines and the UK, he served as the Private Secretary for the Prime Minister, the Minister-Counselor at the Embassy of Japan in the US, the Director-General in charge of Middle East and African Affairs, the Ambassador of the Consulate General of Japan in New York, the Assistant Chief Cabinet Secretary and the Ambassador to Italy. Since October 2011, he has been working on international cultural exchanges as the President of the Japan Foundation.

From the Festival Director
Takeo Hisamatsu

We've decided to physically hold the 33rd Tokyo International Film Festival, while festivals worldwide have been canceled or shifted online in the wake of COVID-19. We came to this decision because movies are meant to be enjoyed in movie theaters with other movie fans, and the festival is a part of the host-city's charm.

At the same time, understanding that we cannot invite guests from overseas, we will hold Q&A sessions with directors and actors online, so more guests can participate, and more movie fans can enjoy the event.

Furthermore, in "Tokyo Premier 2020", the new showcase category for films from around the globe, which replaces the previous three competition categories, 25 out of 32 are world premieres, 23 are by directors who have directed no more than three feature films, and 12 are the director's first-ever feature film.
We hope that you enjoy the works that will be unveiled in Tokyo more than ever, and please look forward to meeting more great new talents than ever before.

Takeo Hisamatsu
Festival Director
33rd Tokyo International Film Festival
Profile:

Takeo Hisamatsu joined Shochiku Co., Ltd in 1978, and in 1986 became manager of Shochiku USA's Little Tokyo Cinema, Los Angeles. He returned to Tokyo in 1989 and was appointed senior manager of the Exhibition Department. In 1994, he joined Time Warner Entertainment Japan as General Director of the Theatrical Distribution Department, Warner Bros. Pictures Japan. In 2001, he rejoined Shochiku as Director of the Theatrical Distribution Department, Production and Acquisition, and became an Executive Managing Director in 2003. He was named president of what is now Shochiku Broadcasting Co., Ltd. in 2006, and in 2010 rejoined Warner Entertainment Japan Inc. as Deputy General Manager of Warner Bros. Pictures Japan. In 2015, he established his own company, My Way Movies, where he serves as president. Over the past several years, Hisamatsu has participated in the production of such renowned films as Unforgiven (2013, directed by Lee Sang-il), Rurouni Kenshin (2012, Keishi Ohtomo), Air Doll (2009, Hirokazu Kore-eda), Dear Doctor (2009, Miwa Nishikawa), Still Walking (2008, Hirokazu Kore-eda), All Around Us (2008, Ryosuke Hashiguchi) and Love and Honor | Bushi no ichibun (2006, Yoji Yamada).

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