The Tokyo International Film Festival (TIFF) is putting a special emphasis on animation this year, and has announced that Disney’s Big Hero 6 will be the opening night film of their 27th edition.

“The setting of our film, San Fransokyo, is a fictional, futuristic mash-up of two of our favorite cities in the world–San Francisco and Tokyo,” Big Hero 6 directors Don Hall and Chris Williams said in a statement. “The research we did in Tokyo informed every detail of the film. We look forward to bringing our film to this city that so deeply inspired us.”

The closing night film will be Takashi Yamazaki’s Parasyte, based on a manga by Hitoshi Iwaaki about an alien who lodges himself into a human boy’s hand. The live-action film has plenty of animation in it, and Yamazaki also served as the film’s vfx director. Trailer is below:

The festival will also be hosting the first-ever major retrospective devoted to the works of animation and live-action director Hideaki Anno (Neon Genesis Evangelion).


The program, entitled “The World of Hideaki Anno,” will include 50 of Anno’s works, including TV and theatrical animation, short films he created when he was at school, commercial films, live-action features, and promotional videos. From the festival’s announcement:

When he was in his early twenties, Anno impressed Hayao Miyazaki, who subsequently hired him as an animator on his film Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. Since then, Anno has created a string of hits, including Nadia The Secret of Blue Water (1990), the first television series he directed, and the Evangelion series, which has become a global phenomenon.

Toshio Suzuki, the producer of Studio Ghibli, who collaborated with Anno for a number of works, described Anno as the only man Hayao Miyazaki would ever acknowledge as his apprentice. “Anno always brings back memories of the time we created Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. As soon as we agreed that he’d work on the God Warrior character, he came to our studio and never left until the work was completed, sleeping under our desks!” he reminisced. “That was three decades ago, and there is no one in Japan now who doesn’t know of him.”

TIFF will be held from October 23 to 31, 2014 at Roppongi Hills, TOHO Cinemas Nihonbashi, and other venues across Tokyo. The festival’s full line-up will be announced in late August. For more info, visit the festival’s website.

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