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Japan 2020

In this major season we spotlight Japanese filmmakers who have inspired admiration and fascination around the world

We have long carried a torch for Japanese film here at the BFI. Since the first BFI London Film Festival opened with Akira Kurosawa’s Throne of Blood in 1957, we’ve played a vital role in bringing the cinema of this culturally rich nation to UK audiences through our festivals, seasons, theatrical distribution, books and video publishing. In this major season we spotlight filmmakers who have inspired admiration and fascination around the world. We begin our story with Akira Kurosawa, and over the coming months we’ll present films from the Golden Age, a focus on Yasujiro Ozu, new wave rebels, the visionary creations of anime, the netherworlds of J-horror, and so much more from archive rarities to contemporary works and cult classics.

This landmark season will take place on BFI Player from 11 May onwards, with new online collections released each month, and we expect to present it at BFI Southbank and cinemas nationwide later this year.
 

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21st-century Japan

Indie Japan

Cult Japan

Akira Kurosawa

Yasujirō Ozu

Classics

Featured collections

J-Horror
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J-Horror

Ghost cats, killer children and cursed videotapes comprise just some of the terrors that Japan has gifted our nightmares.

21st-century Japan
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21st-century Japan

Modern classics that highlight the enduring strength of Japanese cinema.

Japanese Classics
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Japanese Classics

From the samurai thrillers of Kurosawa to the beautiful melodramas of Naruse, this collection celebrates the extraordinary diversity of Japanese cinema.

Go deeper with our exclusive Akira Kurosawa collection digital guide