Japan Academy Prize Announces Winners for 44th Edition

The Japan Academy Prize, Japan’s equivalent of the Oscars awarded by the Nippon Academy-sho Association of industry professionals, has announced the winners for its 44th edition which honours films released between Dec. 16, 2019 and Dec. 31, 2020. The much lauded Fukushima 50 misses out on the big prize but gets Director, Supporting Actor, and a host of technical awards while Eiji Uchida’s Midnight Swan takes Picture of the Year and Actor, and Masami Nagasawa picks up the Best Actress award not for reprising her role in Confidence Man JP but for Tatsushi Omori’s grim maternal drama, Mother.

Picture of the Year

Animation of the Year

  • Violet Evergarden: The Movie 
  • Poupelle of Chimney Town
  • Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train
  • Josee, the Tiger and the Fish
  • Stand by Me Doraemon 2

Director of the Year

  • Eiji Uchida (Midnight Swan)
  • Naomi Kawase (True Mothers)
  • Nobuhiro Doi (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ryota Nakano (The Asadas)
  • Setsuro Wakamatsu (Fukushima 50)

Screenplay of the Year

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

  • Shun Oguri (The Voice of Sin)
  • Tsuyoshi Kusanagi (Midnight Swan)
  • Koichi Sato (Fukushima 50)
  • Masaki Suda (Ito)
  • Kazunari Ninomiya (The Asadas)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

  • Shohei Uno (The Voice of Sin)
  • Satoshi Tsumabuki (The Asadas)
  • Ryo Narita (The Cornered Mouse Dreams of Cheese)
  • Gen Hoshino (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ken Watanabe (Fukushima 50)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Outstanding Achievement in Music

  • Taro Iwashiro (Fukushima 50)
  • Yuki Kajiura & Go Shiina (Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train)
  • Seiji Kameda (Ito)
  • Naoki Sato (The Voice of Sin)
  • Junnosuke Yamamoto (Tora-san, Wish You Were Here)

Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

  • Toshihiro Isomi & Emiko Tsuyuki (The Voice of Sin)
  • Tomoko Kurata & Shoko Yoshizawa (Tora-san, Wish You Were Here)
  • Michitoshi Kurokawa (The Asadas)
  • Yukiharu Seshimo (Fukushima 50)
  • Hiroyuki Agatsuma (Midnight Swan)

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Recording

Outstanding Achievement in Film Editing

Outstanding Foreign Language Film

  • Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (Episode IX)
  • Parasite
  • Ford v Ferrari (Le Mans ’66)
  • 1917
  • Tenet

Newcomer of the Year 

  • Misaki Hattori (Midnight Swan)
  • Aju Makita (True Mothers)
  • Nana Mori (Last Letter)
  • Kenshi Okada (Hope; The Legacy of Dr. Death: Black File; I Have Loved you for 30 Years, Yayoi) 
  • Daiken Okudaira (Mother)
  • Ren Nagase (Yowamushi Pedal)

Special Award from the Association

(Lifetime achievement awards, technical fields)

  • Matsuo Ikehata (scenic artist)
  • Yoshikazu Yasuhiko (animator and character designer)
  • Kikuo Notomi (gun effects)

Award for Distinguished Service from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement awards, creatives)

  • Makiko Ishihara (former actress known as Mie Kitahara prior to her retirement on her marriage to frequent co-star Yujiro Ishihara, and until recently head of Ishihara International Productions, Inc. talent agency)
  • Akiko Koyama (actress)
  • Tatsuo Suzuki (cinematographer)
  • Yonezo Maeda (cinematographer)
  • Kazuko Yoshiyuki (actress)

Special Award from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement award presented to members of the film industry who passed away during 2020)

  • Jo Shishido (actor)
  • Nobuhiko Obayashi (director)
  • Tetsuya Watari (actor)

Award of Honour from the Association

(Lifetime achievement award for members of the film industry who received a national honour or made a great contribution to the development of the Association)

  • Yusuke Okada (chairman of Toei who passed away on Nov. 18 at the age of 71)

Popularity Awards

(Decided via an All Night Nippon listener poll)

Movie: Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train

Actor: Shun Oguri (The Voice of Sin)

Source: Japan Academy Prize official websiteEiga Natalie

Blue Ribbon Awards Announces Winners for 63rd Edition

The Blue Ribbon Awards, presented by film critics and writers in Tokyo, has announced the winners for the 63rd edition which honours films released in 2020. Fukushima 50, a tense dramatisation of the efforts to mitigate the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, takes Best Film while Ryota Nakano takes home Best Director for The Asadas, Masami Nagasawa picks up Best Actress for her second consecutive year reprising her role in The Confidence Man JP, and Tsuyoshi Kusanagi takes Best Actor for his role as a transgender woman. Owing to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, there will be no physical ceremony for this year’s awards.

Best Film  

Fukushima 50 – Setsuro Wakamatsu draws inspiration from Ryusho Kadota’s nonfiction book to pay tribute to the workers who stayed behind during the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

Best 10

Presented in no particular order.

  • True Mothers – heartbreaking drama from Naomi Kawase in which a young couple adopt a baby only for the birth mother to resurface
  • The Asadas – latest from Ryota Nakano starring Kazunari Ninomiya inspired by the life of photographer Masashi Asada.
  • Underdog – boxing drama from Masaharu Take.
  • Ito – Heisei love story inspired by the classic Miyuki Nakajima song, directed by Takahisa Zeze, and starring Nana Komatsu & Masaki Suda
  • Theatre: A Love Story – A self-obsessed writer slowly destroys the joy and hope of a woman he claims to love then turns it into art in Isao Yukisada’s dark romance
  • Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train – record breaking movie of the hit TV anime in which a boy in the Taisho era tries to heal his younger sister after she is turned into a demon
  • Wife of a Spy – 8K wartime drama from Kiyoshi Kurosawa in which Yu Aoi tries to stop her husband Issey Takahashi from blowing the whistle after witnessing atrocity in Manchuria.
  • The Voice of Sin – Shun Oguri stars as a reporter investigating a 30-year-old unsolved case.
  • Fukushima 50 – Setsuro Wakamatsu draws inspiration from Ryusho Kadota’s nonfiction book to pay tribute to the workers who stayed behind during the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear power plant.
  • Midnight Swan – ex-SMAP member Tsuyoshi Kusanagi stars as a transgender woman who takes in a little girl neglected by her parents.

Best 10 Runners up

Presented in no particular order

  • A Beloved Wife – An unsuccessful screenwriter is henpecked by his understandably irate sake-guzzling wife in this autobiographical take on a toxic marriage.
  • Kyou Kara Ore Wa!!: The Movie – big screen outing for the TV drama adaptation of the high school delinquent manga by Hiroyuki Nishimori directed by Yuichi Fukuda..
  • The Confidence Man JP: Princess – sequel in which the gang of scammers try their luck in Malaysia
  • Any Crybabies Around? – a young man flees his family in embarrassment after going viral for getting drunk and being naked at a festival only to return two years later to make it up to them.
  • First Love – boxing drama from Takashi Miike
  • Mother – Masami Nagasawa stars as an abusive mother who pushes her teenage son towards murder.
  • Mishima: The Last Debate – documentary focussing on Yukio Mishima’s address to the students at the University of Tokyo in 1969
  • Minoriyuku – drama about an apple farmer who was born with a stammer and dreams of becoming a comedian.
  • Mio’s Cookbook – Haruki Kadokawa period drama in which a woman who lost her parents in a flood discovers a talent for cooking.
  • Yowamushi Pedal – live action adaptation of the popular high school bicycle racing manga.

Best Director

  • Eiji Uchida (Midnight Swan)
  • Naomi Kawase (True Mothers)
  • Kiyoshi Kurosawa (Wife of a Spy)
  • Nobuhiro Doi (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ryota Nakano (The Asadas)

Best Actor

  • Shun Oguri (The Voice of Sin)
  • Tsuyoshi Kusanagi (Midnight Swan)
  • Koichi Sato (Fukushima 50)
  • Kazunari Ninomiya (The Asadas)
  • Mirai Moriyama (Underdog)

Best Actress

  • Yu Aoi (Wife of a Spy)
  • Mana Ashida (Child of the Stars)
  • Hiromi Nagasaku (True Mothers)
  • Masami Nagasawa (Mother / The Confidence Man JP: Princess)
  • Asami Mizukawa (A Beloved Wife)

Best Supporting Actor

  • Satoshi Tsumabuki (The Asadas / I Never Shot Anyone)
  • Ryo Narita (The Cornered Mouse Dreams of Cheese / Ito)
  • Masahiro Higashide (The Confidence Man JP: Princess / Wife of a Spy)
  • Gen Hoshino (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ken Watanabe (Fukushima 50)

Best Supporting Actress

  • Sairi Ito (Theatre: A Love Story / Step / Junihitoe wo Kita Akuma / Hotel Royal)
  • Nana Eikura (Ito)
  • Haru Kuroki (The Asadas)
  • Becky (First Love)
  • Aju Makita (True Mothers)

Best Newcomer

  • Daiken Okudaira (Mother)
  • Sakurako Konishi (First Love)
  • Nao (Mio’s Cookbook / Stigmatized Properties)
  • Misaki Hattori (Midnight Swan)
  • Hio Miyazawa (his)
  • Nana Mori (Last Letter)

Best Foreign Film

Parasite

Foreign Film Best 10

13 because of multiple ties. Presented in no particular order

  • Never Look Away
  • 1917
  • Judy
  • Bombshell
  • Little Women
  • Tenet
  • Onward 
  • House of Hummingbird
  • Parasite
  • The Farewell
  • Ford v Ferrari (AKA Le Mans ’66 in some territories)
  • Midsommar 
  • Wonder Woman 1984

Foreign Film Best 10 Runners Up

Presented in no particular order

  • Mr Jones
  • The Painted Bird
  • Abe
  • Cats
  • The Kindness of Strangers 
  • Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey  
  • A Rainy Day in New York 

Sources: Eiga NatalieSports Hochi

Kinema Junpo Announces 94th Best 10 for 2020

Prestigious cinema magazine Kinema Junpo has released its always anticipated “Best 10” list for films released in 2020, the 94th edition. Top prize goes to Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Silver Lion-winning Wife of a Spy while the late Nobuhiko Obayashi takes the Best Director award for his final film Labyrinth of Cinema which comes in second on the Best 10 list.

Best 10

1. Wife of a Spy (スパイの妻<劇場版>)

Originally commissioned for 8K TV, Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s wartime drama stars Yu Aoi as the titular wife who finds herself working against her husband, Issey Takahashi, when she discovers that he intends to blow the whistle after observing something he shouldn’t have while working in Manchuria. An awards season favourite, the film also picked up the Silver Lion at the 77th Venice International Film Festival.

2. Labyrinth of Cinema (海辺の映画館-キネマの玉手箱)

A poetic advocation for the transformative power of art, Nobuhiko Obayashi’s final film takes a surrealist odyssey through the history of warfare as three youngsters chase the image of Japan in the labyrinths of cinema. Review.

3. True Mothers (朝が来る)

Festival darling Naomi Kawase adapts Mizuki Tsujimura’s novel in which a childless couple adopt the baby of a teenage mother only for her to return some years later and attempt to reclaim her child.

4. Underdog (アンダードッグ)

Two-part boxing drama from Masaharu Take (100 Yen Love) starring Best Actor winner Mirai Moriyama as a dejected featherweight fighter who’s never made it to champion finding himself faced with a TV comedian (Ryo Katsuji) giving it a go in the ring and a cocky up-and-comer (Takumi Kitamura) who can’t shake his violent past.

5. The Real Thing (本気のしるし<劇場版>)

First aired as a 10-part TV drama then edited down to 233 minutes for theatrical exhibition, the latest from Koji Fukada (Hospitalité, Harmonium, A Girl Missing) adapts the manga of the same name and stars Win Morisaki as a bored salaryman whose life changes after he saves a mysterious woman, Kaho Tsuchimura, from an oncoming train.

6. 37 Seconds (37セカンズ)

Written and directed by the single-named Hikari, vibrant drama 37 Seconds stars Mei Kayama as an aspiring mangaka with cerebral palsy striving to escape the overbearing caring of her well-meaning mother while trying to gain experience to make it in the world of erotic comics. Review. Streaming via Netflix in many territories!

7. The Voice of Sin (罪の声)

Mystery drama adapted from the novel by Takeshi Shiota starring Shun Oguri and Gen Hoshino as a reporter and tailor respectively who each find themselves investigating an unsolved murder from 30 years previously.

8. A Beloved Wife (喜劇 愛妻物語)

Semi-autobiographical comedy drama from screenwriter/director Shin Adachi exploring the toxic marriage between an unsuccessful screenwriter and his resentful, dipsomaniac wife (Best Actress winner Asami Mizukawa). Review.

9. Living in Your Sky (空に住む)

Shinji Aoyama returns to cinema screens for the first time in seven years following 2013’s Backwater adapting the novel by Masato Odake. Mikako Tabe stars as an editor at a publishing house who loses her parents suddenly and moves into a luxury apartment block managed by her uncle where she strikes up a romance with a movie star (Takanori Iwata) living a few floors above.

10. On the Edge of Their Seats (アルプススタンドのはしの方)

Indie drama adapting a popular play first performed by a high school theatre group and set on the bleachers of a high school baseball game.

Best 10 International

  1. Parasite
  2. House of Hummingbird
  3. Portrait of a Lady on Fire
  4. Little Women
  5. The Painted Bird 
  6. Dead Souls
  7. Ford v Ferrari (Le Mans ’66)
  8. Pain and Glory
  9. 1917
  10. Tenet

Best 10 Documentaries

  1. Why You Can’t Be Prime Minister (なぜ君は総理大臣になれないのか)
  2. Prison Circle (プリズン・サークル)
  3. Hana no Atosaki: Mutsu Baasan no Aruita Michi (花のあとさき ムツばあさんの歩いた道)
  4. Mishima: The Last Debate (三島由紀夫vs東大全共闘 50年目の真実)
  5. Ongaku House Melody-Go-Round (音響ハウス Melody-Go-Round)
  6. Jose Mujica: Sekai de Ichiban Mazushii Daitoryo kara Nihonjin e (ムヒカ 世界でいちばん貧しい大統領から日本人へ)
  7. Tane wa Dare no Mono (タネは誰のもの)
  8. An Ant Strikes Back (アリ地獄天国)
  9. Reiwa Uprising (れいわ一揆)
  10. Montage of Hong Kong (香港画)

Individual Awards

Best Director: Nobuhiko Obayashi (Labyrinth of Cinema)

Best Screenplay: Ryusuke Hamaguchi / Tadashi Nohara / Kiyoshi Kurosawa (Wife of a Spy)

Best Director (international): Bong Joon-ho (Parasite)

Best Actress: Asami Mizukawa (A Beloved Wife / Runway)

Best Actor: Mirai Moriyama (Underdog)

Best Supporting Actress: Aju Makita (True Mothers)

Best Supporting Actor: Shohei Uno (The Voice of Sin / The Real Thing / A Beast in Love / 37 Seconds / Child of the Stars)

Best Newcomer (actress): Serena Motola (Voices in the Wind / Life: Untitled)

Best Newcomer (actor): Daiken Okudaira (Mother)

Readers’ Choice Best Director: Mitsutoshi Tanaka (Tengaramon)

Readers’ Choice Best Director (international): Bong Joon-ho (Parasite)

Readers’ Choice Award: Saburo Kawamoto – Eiga wo Mireba Wakaru Koto (映画を見ればわかること)

Special Award: Teruyo Nogami (producer)

Source: Kinema Junpo official website.

Japan Academy Prize Announces Nominees for 44th Edition

The Japan Academy Prize, Japan’s equivalent of the Oscars awarded by the Nippon Academy-sho Association of industry professionals, has announced the candidate list for its 44th edition which honours films released between Dec. 16, 2019 and Dec. 31, 2020. The big (potential) winners this year are the tense drama recounting the efforts to mitigate the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, Fukushima 50, and crime thriller The Voice of Sin which each pick up 12 nominations, while there are also good showings for Eiji Uchida’s Midnight Swan, Ryota Nakano’s The Asadas, and the 50th anniversary Tora-san tribute, Tora-san, Wish You Were Here. The awards ceremony hosted by last year’s Best Actress winner Shim Eun-kyung and TV presenter Shinichi Hatori will take place at Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa on 19th March.

Picture of the Year

Animation of the Year

  • Violet Evergarden: The Movie 
  • Poupelle of Chimney Town
  • Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train
  • Josee, the Tiger and the Fish
  • Stand by Me Doraemon 2

Director of the Year

  • Eiji Uchida (Midnight Swan)
  • Naomi Kawase (True Mothers)
  • Nobuhiro Doi (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ryota Nakano (The Asadas)
  • Setsuro Wakamatsu (Fukushima 50)

Screenplay of the Year

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

  • Shun Oguri (The Voice of Sin)
  • Tsuyoshi Kusanagi (Midnight Swan)
  • Koichi Sato (Fukushima 50)
  • Masaki Suda (Ito)
  • Kazunari Ninomiya (The Asadas)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

  • Shohei Uno (The Voice of Sin)
  • Satoshi Tsumabuki (The Asadas)
  • Ryo Narita (The Cornered Mouse Dreams of Cheese)
  • Gen Hoshino (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ken Watanabe (Fukushima 50)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Outstanding Achievement in Music

  • Taro Iwashiro (Fukushima 50)
  • Yuki Kajiura & Go Shiina (Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train)
  • Seiji Kameda (Ito)
  • Naoki Sato (The Voice of Sin)
  • Junnosuke Yamamoto (Tora-san, Wish You Were Here)

Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

  • Toshihiro Isomi & Emiko Tsuyuki (The Voice of Sin)
  • Tomoko Kurata & Shoko Yoshizawa (Tora-san, Wish You Were Here)
  • Michitoshi Kurokawa (The Asadas)
  • Yukiharu Seshimo (Fukushima 50)
  • Hiroyuki Agatsuma (Midnight Swan)

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Recording

Outstanding Achievement in Film Editing

Outstanding Foreign Language Film

  • Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (Episode IX)
  • Parasite
  • Ford v Ferrari (Le Mans ’66)
  • 1917
  • Tenet

Newcomer of the Year 

  • Misaki Hattori (Midnight Swan)
  • Aju Makita (True Mothers)
  • Nana Mori (Last Letter)
  • Kenshi Okada (Hope; The Legacy of Dr. Death: Black File; I Have Loved you for 30 Years, Yayoi) 
  • Daiken Okudaira (Mother)
  • Ren Nagase (Yowamushi Pedal)

Special Award from the Association

(Lifetime achievement awards, technical fields)

  • Matsuo Ikehata (scenic artist)
  • Yoshikazu Yasuhiko (animator and character designer)
  • Kikuo Notomi (gun effects)

Award for Distinguished Service from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement awards, creatives)

  • Makiko Ishihara (former actress known as Mie Kitahara prior to her retirement on her marriage to frequent co-star Yujiro Ishihara, and until recently head of Ishihara International Productions, Inc. talent agency)
  • Akiko Koyama (actress)
  • Tatsuo Suzuki (cinematographer)
  • Yonezo Maeda (cinematographer)
  • Kazuko Yoshiyuki (actress)

Special Award from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement award presented to members of the film industry who passed away during 2020)

  • Jo Shishido (actor)
  • Nobuhiko Obayashi (director)
  • Tetsuya Watari (actor)

Award of Honour from the Association

(Lifetime achievement award for members of the film industry who received a national honour or made a great contribution to the development of the Association)

  • Yusuke Okada (chairman of Toei who passed away on Nov. 18 at the age of 71)

Source: Japan Academy Prize official websiteEiga Natalie

Blue Ribbon Awards Announces Nominations for 63rd Edition

Presented by film critics and writers in Tokyo, the Blue Ribbon Awards has announced its nominations for the 63rd edition honouring films released in 2020 which has admittedly been a difficult year though as the list of nominees demonstrates nevertheless a strong one for cinema. This year there will be no physical ceremony but the winners are expected to be announced in mid-February.

Best Film  

  • True Mothers – heartbreaking drama from Naomi Kawase in which a young couple adopt a baby only for the birth mother to resurface
  • The Asadas – latest from Ryota Nakano starring Kazunari Ninomiya inspired by the life of photographer Masashi Asada.
  • Underdog – boxing drama from Masaharu Take.
  • Ito – Heisei love story inspired by the classic Miyuki Nakajima song, directed by Takahisa Zeze, and starring Nana Komatsu & Masaki Suda
  • A Beloved Wife – An unsuccessful screenwriter is henpecked by his understandably irate sake-guzzling wife in this autobiographical take on a toxic marriage.
  • Kyou Kara Ore Wa!!: The Movie – big screen outing for the TV drama adaptation of the high school delinquent manga by Hiroyuki Nishimori directed by Yuichi Fukuda.
  • Theatre: A Love Story – A self-obsessed writer slowly destroys the joy and hope of a woman he claims to love then turns it into art in Isao Yukisada’s dark romance
  • Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba the Movie: Mugen Train – record breaking movie of the hit TV anime in which a boy in the Taisho era tries to heal his younger sister after she is turned into a demon.
  • The Confidence Man JP: Princess – sequel in which the gang of scammers try their luck in Malaysia
  • Wife of a Spy – 8K wartime drama from Kiyoshi Kurosawa in which Yu Aoi tries to stop her husband Takahashi Issei from blowing the whistle after witnessing atrocity in Manchuria.
  • The Voice of Sin – Shun Oguri stars as a reporter investigating a 30-year-old unsolved case.
  • Any Crybabies Around? – a young man flees his family in embarrassment after going viral for getting drunk and being naked at a festival only to return two years later to make it up to them.
  • First Love – boxing drama from Takashi Miike
  • Fukushima 50 – Setsuro Wakamatsu draws inspiration from Ryusho Kadota’s nonfiction book to pay tribute to the workers who stayed behind during the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.
  • Mother – Masami Nagasawa stars as an abusive mother who pushes her teenage son towards murder.
  • Mishima: The Last Debate – documentary focussing on Yukio Mishima’s address to the students at the University of Tokyo in 1969
  • Midnight Swan – ex-SMAP member Tsuyoshi Kusanagi stars as a transgender woman who takes in a little girl neglected by her parents.
  • Minoriyuku – drama about an apple farmer who was born with a stammer and dreams of becoming a comedian.
  • Mio’s Cookbook – Haruki Kadokawa period drama in which a woman who lost her parents in a flood discovers a talent for cooking.
  • Yowamushi Pedal – live action adaptation of the popular high school bicycle racing manga.

Best Director

  • Eiji Uchida (Midnight Swan)
  • Naomi Kawase (True Mothers)
  • Kiyoshi Kurosawa (Wife of a Spy)
  • Nobuhiro Doi (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ryota Nakano (The Asadas)

Best Actor

  • Shun Oguri (The Voice of Sin)
  • Tsuyoshi Kusanagi (Midnight Swan)
  • Koichi Sato (Fukushima 50)
  • Kazunari Ninomiya (The Asadas)
  • Mirai Moriyama (Underdog)

Best Actress

  • Yu Aoi (Wife of a Spy)
  • Mana Ashida (Child of the Stars)
  • Hiromi Nagasaku (True Mothers)
  • Masami Nagasawa (Mother / Confidence Man JP: Princess)
  • Asami Mizukawa (A Beloved Wife)

Best Supporting Actor

  • Satoshi Tsumabuki (The Asadas / I Never Shot Anyone)
  • Ryo Narita (The Cornered Mouse Dreams of Cheese / Ito)
  • Masahiro Higashide (Confidence Man JP: Princess / Wife of a Spy)
  • Gen Hoshino (The Voice of Sin)
  • Ken Watanabe (Fukushima 50)

Best Supporting Actress

  • Sairi Ito (Theatre: A Love Story / Step / Junihitoe wo Kita Akuma / Hotel Royal)
  • Nana Eikura (Ito)
  • Haru Kuroki (The Asadas)
  • Becky (First Love)
  • Aju Makita (True Mothers)

Best Newcomer

  • Daiken Okudaira (Mother)
  • Sakurako Konishi (First Love)
  • Nao (Mio’s Cookbook / Stigmatized Properties)
  • Misaki Hattori (Midnight Swan)
  • Hio Miyazawa (his)
  • Nana Mori (Last Letter)

Best Foreign Film

  • Mr Jones
  • Never Look Away
  • The Painted Bird
  • 1917
  • Abe
  • Cats
  • Judy
  • Bombshell
  • Little Women
  • Tenet
  • Onward 
  • The Kindness of Strangers 
  • Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey 
  • House of Hummingbird
  • Parasite
  • The Farewell 
  • Ford v Ferrari (AKA Le Mans ’66 in some territories)
  • Midsommar 
  • A Rainy Day in New York 
  • Wonder Woman 1984

Sources: Eiga NatalieSports Hochi

Japan Academy Prize Announces Winners for 43rd Edition

The Japan Academy Prize, Japan’s equivalent of the Oscars awarded by the Nippon Academy-sho Association of industry professionals, has announced the winners for its 43rd edition which honours films released between Dec. 16, 2018 and Dec. 15, 2019. Michihito Fujii’s political thriller The Journalist dominated the major categories taking Picture of the Year as well as Best Actor/Actress, while Kingdom also made a good showing taking both Supporting Actor and Actress. Despite its large number of nominations, Fly Me to the Saitama took only Director, Screenplay, and Editing.

Picture of the Year

Animation of the Year

  • Her Blue Sky
  • Weathering with You
  • Detective Conan: The Fist of Blue Sapphire
  • Lupin III: The First
  • One Piece: Stampede

Director of the Year

Screenplay of the Year

  • Shozo Katashima (Talking the Pictures)
  • Roba Shimori, Akihiko Takaishi, Michihito Fujii (The Journalist)
  • Yuichi Tokunaga (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Hideyuki Hirayama (Closed Ward)
  • Koki Mitani (Hit Me Anyone One More Time)

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

  • Tsurube Shofukutei (Closed Ward)
  • Masaki Suda (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Kiichi Nakai (Hit Me Anyone One More Time)
  • Tori Matsuzaka (The Journalist)
  • GACKT (Fly Me to the Saitama)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

  • Go Ayano (Closed Ward)
  • Yusuke Iseya (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Tasuku Emoto (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Takashi Okamura (The 47 Ronin in Debt)
  • Kuranosuke Sasaki (Kubo Ibuki)
  • Ryo Yoshizawa (Kingdom)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

Outstanding Achievement in Music

Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography

  • Taro Kawazu (Kingdom)
  • Kozo Shibasaki (Closed Ward)
  • Shohei Tanigawa (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Piotr Niemyjski (Listen to the Universe)
  • Junichi Fujisawa (Talking the Pictures)

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction

The lighting award is tied to cinematography which was awarded to Kingdom but unfortunately there was no eligible nominee so this year there is no winner in the lighting category.

  • Nariyuki Ueda (Closed Ward)
  • Shunri Rinoie (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Kenjiro So (Listen to the Universe)
  • Tatsuya Osada (Talking the Pictures)

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

  • Yoji Abeki (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Norihiro Isoda (Talking the Pictures)
  • Iwao Saito (Kingdom)
  • Anri Johjo (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Katsumi Nakazawa (Closed Ward)

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Recording

  • Hirokazu Kato (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Yoshifumi Kureishi (Listen to the Universe)
  • Hiromichi Kori (Talking the Pictures)
  • Masato Komatsu (Closed Ward)
  • Kazushiko Yokono (Kingdom)

Outstanding Achievement in Film Editing

Outstanding Foreign Language Film

  • Yesterday
  • Green Book
  • Joker
  • The Mule
  • Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Newcomer of the Year 

(awarded to all nominees equally)

  • Yukino Kishii (Just Only Love)
  • Yuina Kuroshima (Talking the Pictures)
  • Riho Yoshioka (Blind Witness, Parallel World Love Story)
  • Oji Suzuka (Listen to the Universe)
  • Win Morisaki (Listen to the Universe)
  • Ryusei Yokohama (Aiuta: My Promise To Nakuhito; Go Away, Ultramarine; Cheer Boys!)

Special Award from the Association

(Lifetime achievement awards, technical fields)

  • Tetsuo Kaneko (Opticals)
  • Yoichi Kotabe (Animator)
  • Kunio Niwa (Location Manager)
  • Yoshio Yamada (Production Designer)

Award for Distinguished Service from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement awards, creatives)

  • Koji Takada (Screenwriter)
  • Akira Takarada (Actor)
  • Yoko Tsukasa (Actress)
  • Sadao Nakajima (Director)
  • Ayako Wakao (Actress)

Special Award from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement award presented to members of the film industry who passed away during 2019)

  • Etsuko Ichihara (Actress)
  • Yasuo Furuhata (Director)
  • Tadao Takashima (Actor)
  • Makoto Wada (Director, Screenwriter, Illustrator)

In Memoriam 

(Special section honouring previous recipients of the Special Awards who passed away in 2019)

  • Junya Sato (Director/Screenwriter)
  • Machiko Kyo (Actress)
  • Takashi Kawamata (Cinematographer)
  • Yoshinobu Nishioka (Art Director)
  • Kaoru Yachigusa (Actress)
  • Takashi Matsuda (Costume Designer)
  • Sunao Sakagami (Producer)
  • Masashi Tara (Sound Designer)
  • Nobuo Yajima (Special Effects)

Popularity Awards

(Decided via an All Night Nippon listener poll)

Movie: The 47 Ronin in Debt

Actor: Gen Hoshino (Samurai Shifters)

Source: Japan Academy Prize official websiteEiga Natalie

Blue Ribbon Awards Announces Winners for 62nd Edition

The Blue Ribbon Awards, presented by film critics and writers in Tokyo, has announced the winners for the 62nd edition which honours films released in 2019. Crowd pleasing comedy Fly Me to the Saitama continues its awards season success by taking Best Film while Tetsuya Mariko picks up a best director award, and Kiichi Nakai and Masami Nagasawa take home Best Actor and Actress respectively. The awards will be presented at a prize giving ceremony at Iino Hall on 18th February.

The winners in full:

Best Film

Winner: Fly Me to the Saitama – broad comedy in which the residents of Saitama have become an oppressed minority.

Best 10

“Best 13” because there was a four way tie. Presented in no particular order.

  • The Great War of Archimedes – wartime drama from the director of The Eternal Zero starring Masaki Suda as a maths genius trying to expose corruption in the military.
  • Welcome Back, Tora-san – 50th anniversary tribute to Yoji Yamada’s long running Tora-san series.
  • Talking the Pictures – Masayuki Suo’s tribute to the age of the “benshi” silent movie narrator.
  • Hit Me Anyone One More Time – latest from Koki Mitani in which a man gets a blow on the head and loses his memory only to be told he is actually the prime minister of Japan!
  • Kingdom – “wuxia” manga adaptation from blockbuster maestro Shinsuke Sato.
  • The Journalist – political thriller starring Shim Eun-kyung as a reporter attempting to expose governmental corruption and Tori Matsuzaka as a conflicted civil servant.
  • Weathering with You – latest animation from Makoto Shinkai in which a boy runs away from home and meets a girl who can control the weather.
  • Fly Me to the Saitama – broad comedy in which the residents of Saitama have become an oppressed minority.
  • Sea of Revival – drama from Kazuya Shiraishi in which a man moves back to his partner’s home town but finds that trouble follows him.
  • One Night – drama from Kazuya Shiraishi in which a scattered family reunites 15 years after one traumatic night.
  • Masquerade Hotel – mystery starring Takuya Kimura as a detective working undercover at a hotel where he clashes with front desk manager Masami Nagasawa as they try to catch a serial killer.
  • Listen to the Universe – adaptation of Riku Onda’s novel following four aspiring concert pianists directed by Kei Ishikawa (Gukoroku: Traces of Sin)
  • From Miyamoto to You – sequel to a TV drama directed by Tetsuya Mariko (Destruction Babies) starring Sosuke Ikematsu as a shy salesman who falls for Yu Aoi’s office worker.

Runners up

(titles from the long list which didn’t make the final cut. No particular order)

  • It Feels So Good – steamy drama from screenwriter Haruhiko Arai in which a bride-to-be (Kumi Takiuchi) reconnects with an old flame (Tasuku Emoto)
  • The Confidence Man JP – big screen outing for a TV drama starring Masami Nagasawa as a conwoman.
  • The Bucket List – Isshin Inudo’s remake of the US comedy starring Sayuri Yoshinaga and Yuki Amami as two terminally ill women who find the bucket list of a 12-year-old girl and decide to follow it.
  • 12 Suicidal Teens – 12 depressed teens meet in a disused hospital to die but discover new will to live after investigating a murder.
  • Typhoon Family – family drama in which siblings reunite 10 years after their parents robbed a bank and disappeared.
  • Another World – Three high school buddies reunite in their small-town home hoping to restore the easy bond of their adolescence while battling middle-aged disappointment in the latest from Junji Sakamoto.
  • Closed Ward – drama in which a murder occurs at a psychiatric hospital.

Best Director

Best Actor

  • Shingo Katori (Sea of Revival)
  • Masaki Suda (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Kiichi Nakai (Hit Me Anyone One More Time)
  • Ryo Narita (Talking the Pictures)
  • Tori Matsuzaka (The Journalist, Iwane: Sword of Serenity)

Best Actress

  • Yu Aoi (A Long Goodbye)
  • Masami Nagasawa (The Confidence Man JP)
  • Fumi Nikaido (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Mayu Matsuoka (Listen to the Universe)
  • Riho Yoshioka (Blind Witness)
  • Sayuri Yoshinaga (The Bucket List)

Best Supporting Actor

  • Go Ayano (Closed Ward)
  • Itsuji Itao (My Father, the Bride; The 47 Ronin in Debt)
  • Kiyohiko Shibukawa (Another World, Closed Ward)
  • Ryo Narita (ChiwawaFly Me to the Saitama, Farewell Song, No Longer Human)
  • Tori Matsuzaka (Listen to the Universe)
  • Ryo Yoshizawa (Kingdom)

Best Supporting Actress

  • Yuki Amami (The Bucket List)
  • Chizuru Ikewaki (Another World)
  • Nana Komatsu (Samurai Marathon, Closed Ward)
  • Masami Nagasawa (Masquerade Hotel, Kingdom)
  • Mayu Matsuoka (One Night)
  • MEGUMI (Typhoon Family; Little Nights, Little Love; One Night)

Best Newcomer

Best Foreign Film

Winner: Joker

Foreign Film Best 10

(11 because of a tie. No particular order)

  • Frozen 2
  • Aladdin
  • Yesterday
  • Green Book
  • Godzilla: King of the Monsters
  • City Hunter (French live action movie)
  • Joker
  • Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse 
  • The Mule
  • Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Runners up

(titles from the long list which didn’t make the final cut. No particular order)

  • The Irishman
  • The Spy Gone North
  • The Favourite
  • The Truth (Koreeda)
  • Toy Story 4
  • Mary Queen of Scots
  • Detective Pikachu
  • Lion King
  • Rocketman

Sources: Eiga Natalie, Sports Hochi

Japan Academy Prize Announces Nominees for 43rd Edition

Fly Me to the Saitama still 4The Japan Academy Prize, Japan’s equivalent of the Oscars awarded by the Nippon Academy-sho Association of industry professionals, has announced the candidate list for its 43rd edition which honours films released between Dec. 16, 2018 and Dec. 15, 2019. This year, perhaps surprisingly, crowd pleasing surrealist comedy Fly Me to the Saitama has topped the charts with nominations in 12 categories including film, director, screenplay, leading actor, leading actress, and supporting actor, while Shinsuke Sato’s wuxia-inspired blockbuster Kingdom and Michihito Fujii’s political thriller The Journalist also pick up multiple nominations. The winners will be announced at the star-studded awards ceremony at Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa on March 6.

Picture of the Year

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Animation of the Year

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  • Her Blue Sky
  • Weathering with You
  • Detective Conan: The Fist of Blue Sapphire
  • Lupin III: The First
  • One Piece: Stampede

Director of the Year

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Screenplay of the Year

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  • Shozo Katashima (Talking the Pictures)
  • Roba Shimori, Akihiko Takaishi, Michihito Fujii (The Journalist)
  • Yuichi Tokunaga (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Hideyuki Hirayama (Closed Ward)
  • Koki Mitani (Hit Me Anyone One More Time)

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

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  • Tsurube Shofukutei (Closed Ward)
  • Masaki Suda (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Kiichi Nakai (Hit Me Anyone One More Time)
  • Tori Matsuzaka (The Journalist)
  • GACKT (Fly Me to the Saitama)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

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  • Shim Eun-kyung (The Journalist)
  • Fumi Nikaido (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Mayu Matsuoka (Listen to the Universe)
  • Rie Miyazawa (No Longer Human)
  • Sayuri Yoshinaga (The Bucket List)

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

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  • Go Ayano (Closed Ward)
  • Yusuke Iseya (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Tasuku Emoto (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Takashi Okamura (The 47 Ronin in Debt)
  • Kuranosuke Sasaki (Kubo Ibuki)
  • Ryo Yoshizawa (Kingdom)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

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  • Yuki Amami (The Bucket List)
  • Nana Komatsu (Closed Ward)
  • Mitsuki Takahata (A Banana? At This Time of Night?)
  • Masami Nagasawa (Kingdom)
  • Fumi Nikaido (No Longer Human)

Outstanding Achievement in Music

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Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography

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  • Taro Kawazu (Kingdom)
  • Kozo Shibasaki (Closed Ward)
  • Shohei Tanigawa (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Piotr Niemyjski (Listen to the Universe)
  • Junichi Fujisawa (Talking the Pictures)

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction

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  • Nariyuki Ueda (Closed Ward)
  • Shunri Rinoie (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Kenjiro So (Listen to the Universe)
  • Tatsuya Osada (Talking the Pictures)

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

 

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  • Yoji Abeki (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Norihiro Isoda (Talking the Pictures)
  • Iwao Saito (Kingdom)
  • Anri Johjo (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Katsumi Nakazawa (Closed Ward)

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Recording

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  • Hirokazu Kato (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Yoshifumi Kureishi (Listen to the Universe)
  • Hiromichi Kori (Talking the Pictures)
  • Masato Komatsu (Closed Ward)
  • Kazushiko Yokono (Kingdom)

Outstanding Achievement in Film Editing

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Outstanding Foreign Language Film

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  • Yesterday
  • Green Book
  • Joker
  • The Mule
  • Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Newcomer of the Year 

(awarded to all nominees equally)

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  • Yukino Kishii (Just Only Love)
  • Yuina Kuroshima (Talking the Pictures)
  • Riho Yoshioka (Blind Witness, Parallel World Love Story)
  • Oji Suzuka (Listen to the Universe)
  • Win Morisaki (Listen to the Universe)
  • Ryusei Yokohama (Aiuta: My Promise To Nakuhito; Go Away, Ultramarine; Cheer Boys!)

Special Award from the Association

(Lifetime achievement awards, technical fields)

  • Tetsuo Kaneko (Opticals)
  • Yoichi Kotabe (Animator)
  • Kunio Niwa (Location Manager)
  • Yoshio Yamada (Production Designer)

Award for Distinguished Service from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement awards, creatives)

  • Koji Takada (Screenwriter)
  • Akira Takarada (Actor)
  • Yoko Tsukasa (Actress)
  • Sadao Nakajima (Director)
  • Ayako Wakao (Actress)

Special Award from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement award presented to members of the film industry who passed away during 2019)

  • Etsuko Ichihara (Actress)
  • Yasuo Furuhata (Director)
  • Tadao Takashima (Actor)
  • Makoto Wada (Director, Screenwriter, Illustrator)

In Memoriam 

(Special section honouring previous recipients of the Special Awards who passed away in 2019)

  • Junya Sato (Director/Screenwriter)
  • Machiko Kyo (Actress)
  • Takashi Kawamata (Cinematographer)
  • Yoshinobu Nishioka (Art Director)
  • Kaoru Yachigusa (Actress)
  • Takashi Matsuda (Costume Designer)
  • Sunao Sakagami (Producer)
  • Masashi Tara (Sound Designer)
  • Nobuo Yajima (Special Effects)

Source: Japan Academy Prize official website, Eiga Natalie

 

Blue Ribbon Awards Announces Nominations for 62nd Edition

Katsuben still 1Presented by film critics and writers in Tokyo, the Blue Ribbon Awards has announced its nominations for the 62nd edition which honours films released in 2019. In addition to nominating a “best” picture, the best film long list will also be whittled down to a “best 10” when the polls close later this month. Winners are usually announced in advance of the prize giving ceremony which this year takes place on 18th February.

Best Film / “Best 10” 

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  • The Great War of Archimedes – wartime drama from the director of The Eternal Zero starring Masaki Suda as a maths genius trying to expose corruption in the military.
  • Welcome Back, Tora-san – 50th anniversary tribute to Yoji Yamada’s long running Tora-san series.
  • It Feels So Good – steamy drama from screenwriter Haruhiko Arai in which a bride-to-be (Kumi Takiuchi) reconnects with an old flame (Tasuku Emoto)
  • Talking the Pictures – Masayuki Suo’s tribute to the age of the “benshi” silent movie narrator.
  • Hit Me Anyone One More Time – latest from Koki Mitani in which a man gets a blow on the head and loses his memory only to be told he is actually the prime minister of Japan!
  • Kingdom – “wuxia” manga adaptation from blockbuster maestro Shinsuke Sato.
  • The Confidence Man JP – big screen outing for a TV drama starring Masami Nagasawa as a conwoman.
  • The Bucket List – Isshin Inudo’s remake of the US comedy starring Sayuri Yoshinaga and Yuki Amami as two terminally ill women who find the bucket list of a 12-year-old girl and decide to follow it.
  • 12 Suicidal Teens – 12 depressed teens meet in a disused hospital to die but discover new will to live after investigating a murder.
  • The Journalist – political thriller starring Shim Eun-kyung as a reporter attempting to expose governmental corruption and Tori Matsuzaka as a conflicted civil servant.
  • Typhoon Family – family drama in which siblings reunite 10 years after their parents robbed a bank and disappeared.
  • Weathering with You – latest animation from Makoto Shinkai in which a boy runs away from home and meets a girl who can control the weather.
  • Fly Me to the Saitama – broad comedy in which the residents of Saitama have become an oppressed minority.
  • Sea of Revival – drama from Kazuya Shiraishi in which a man moves back to his partner’s home town but finds that trouble follows him.
  • Another World – Three high school buddies reunite in their small-town home hoping to restore the easy bond of their adolescence while battling middle-aged disappointment in the latest from Junji Sakamoto.
  • One Night – drama from Kazuya Shiraishi in which a scattered family reunites 15 years after one traumatic night.
  • Closed Ward – drama in which a murder occurs at a psychiatric hospital.
  • Masquerade Hotel – mystery starring Takuya Kimura as a detective working undercover at a hotel where he clashes with front desk manager Masami Nagasawa as they try to catch a serial killer.
  • Listen to the Universe – adaptation of Riku Onda’s novel following four aspiring concert pianists directed by Kei Ishikawa (Gukoroku: Traces of Sin)
  • From Miyamoto to You – sequel to a TV drama directed by Tetsuya Mariko (Destruction Babies) starring Sosuke Ikematsu as a shy salesman who falls for Yu Aoi’s office worker.

Best Director

Best Actor

  • Shingo Katori (Sea of Revival)
  • Masaki Suda (The Great War of Archimedes)
  • Kiichi Nakai (Hit Me Anyone One More Time)
  • Ryo Narita (Talking the Pictures)
  • Tori Matsuzaka (The Journalist, Iwane: Sword of Serenity)

Best Actress

  • Yu Aoi (A Long Goodbye)
  • Masami Nagasawa (The Confidence Man JP)
  • Fumi Nikaido (Fly Me to the Saitama)
  • Mayu Matsuoka (Listen to the Universe)
  • Riho Yoshioka (Blind Witness)
  • Sayuri Yoshinaga (The Bucket List)

Best Supporting Actor

  • Go Ayano (Closed Ward)
  • Itsuji Itao (My Father, the Bride; The 47 Ronin in Debt)
  • Kiyohiko Shibukawa (Another World, Closed Ward)
  • Ryo Narita (Chiwawa, Fly Me to the Saitama, Farewell Song, No Longer Human)
  • Tori Matsuzaka (Listen to the Universe)
  • Ryo Yoshizawa (Kingdom)

Best Supporting Actress

  • Yuki Amami (The Bucket List)
  • Chizuru Ikewaki (Another World)
  • Nana Komatsu (Samurai Marathon, Closed Ward)
  • Masami Nagasawa (Masquerade Hotel, Kingdom)
  • Mayu Matsuoka (One Night)
  • MEGUMI (Typhoon Family; Little Nights, Little Love; One Night)

Best Newcomer

Sources: Eiga Natalie, Sports Hochi

Shoplifters Sweeps 42nd Japan Academy Prize

Shoplifters poster 2The 42nd Japan Academy Prize was presented at Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa on 1st March, 2019. Hirokazu Koreeda swept the board for a second year in a row with his Palme d’Or winning family drama Shoplifters which picked up eight awards including Picture, Director, Actress, and Supporting Actress. Meanwhile, Kazuya Shirashi’s retro gangster epic The Blood of Wolves picked up prizes for both of its leading men as well as a handful of technical awards.

Picture of the Year

Shoplifters still 2

Animation of the Year

Mirai banner

  • Dragon Ball Super: Broly (Tatsuya Nagamine)
  • Penguin Highway (Hiroyasu Ishida)
  • Mirai (Mamoru Hosoda)
  • Detective Conan: Zero The Enforcer (Yuzuru Tachikawa)
  • Okko’s Inn (Kitaro Kosaka)

Director of the Year

shoplifters still 5.jpg

Best Screenplay

Shoplifters still 6

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role

Blood of Wolves still 2

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role

Shoplifters still 3

  • Sakura Ando (Shoplifters)
  • Haru Kuroki (Every Day a Good Day)
  • Ryoko Shinohara (The House Where the Mermaid Sleeps)
  • Mayu Matsuoka (Tremble All You Want)
  • Sayuri Yoshinaga (Sakura Guardian in the North)

Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role

blood of wolves still 1

  • Ittoku Kishibe (Sakura Guardian in the North)
  • Dean Fujioka (Recall)
  • Hidetoshi Nishijima (Life in Overtime)
  • Kazunari Ninomiya (Killing for the Prosecution)
  • Tori Matsuzaka (The Blood of Wolves)

Outstanding Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role

every day a good day still 1

Outstanding Achievement in Music

Shoplifters still 4

Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography

Shoplifters still 8

Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction

Shoplifters still 9

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

Blood of Wolves still 3

  • Tsutomu Imamura (The Blood of Wolves)
  • Takashi Nishimura (Recall)
  • Mitsuo Harada (Samurai’s Promise)
  • Kyoko Heya (Sakura Guardian in the North)
  • Keiko Mitsumatsu (Shoplifters)

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Recording

Blood of Wolves still 4

Outstanding Achievement in Film Editing

One Cut of the Dead still 1

Newcomer of the Year 

(awarded to all nominees equally – announced along with nominations)

  • Moka Kamishiraishi (A Forest of Wool and Steel)
  • Shuri (Love At Least)
  • Yurina Hirate (Hibiki)
  • Kyoko Yoshine (Kasane, Samurai’s Promise)
  • Kentaro (Cafe Funiculi Funicula)
  • Taishi Nakagawa (Kids on the Slope, Lock-On Love)
  • Ryo Narita (Stolen Identity, The Antique)
  • Ryo Yoshizawa (River’s Edge)

Special Award of Honour from the Association

(Lifetime achievement awards – technical fields)

  • Yasuo Otsuka (animator)
  • Tadashi Kanada (still photography)
  • Tsutomu Sakurai (producer)
  • Keisuke Chiyoda (costuming)

Special Award of Honour from the Chairman

(Lifetime achievement awards celebrating contribution to the film industry)

  • Mariko Okada (actress and producer)
  • Keiko Kishi (actress)
  • Junya Sato (director and screenwriter)
  • Kiju Yoshida (director and screenwriter)

Special Award from the Chairman 

(Lifetime achievement award presented to members of the film industry who passed away during 2018)

  • Isao Takahata (animation director)
  • Yuriko Hoshi (actress)
  • Masahito Tsugawa (actor)
  • Kirin Kiki (actress)
  • Sadaji Yoshida (cinematographer)
  • Mitsuru Kurosawa (producer)

In Memoriam 

(special section commemorating previous winners of the special awards who passed away in 2018)

  • Tadashi Sawashima (director)
  • Chuji Kinoshita (composer)
  • Shinobu Hashimoto (screenwriter, director, and producer)

Special In Memoriam 

  • Masayuki Nagare (world renowned sculptor and founding member of the Japan Academy Prize as well as the designer of the trophy).

Popularity Awards

(nominated by an All Night Nippon audience poll)

Movie: One Cut of the Dead

one cut banner

Actor: Kentaro (Cafe Funiculi Funicula)

Kentaro Cafe Funiculi Funicular

Source: Japan Academy Prize official website