Amir Naderi (Director)
MONTE is Amir Naderi’s first Italian film - shot in Italy and in the Italian language. His previous feature was 2011’s CUT, shot in Japan and entirely in Japanese.
Naderi’s 1984 film THE RUNNER gained wide international critical recognition. Since the 1970s, he has been among the most influential figures of New Iranian Cinema. His work has been the subject of retrospectives at museums and film festivals around the world, including the Film Society of Lincoln Center (New York), Turin’s Museum of Cinema (Italy) and at the Busan International Film Festival (Korea). Although Naderi’s early films explored themes within the context of Iranian life and culture, he has cited the aesthetics of Italian neorealist cinema as inspiration: non-studio shooting, the use of nonprofessional actors, looser narrative structures, and a focus on the plight of poor and working-class people. Naderi has produced works of new filmmakers such as Andrei Severny’s Condition (2011), Naghmeh Shirkhan’s Hamsayeh (2010) and Ry RussoYoung’s Orphans (2007). He also co-wrote Ramin Bahrani’s 99 HOMES (2015).
Naderi was born in 1946 and grew up in Abadan, a working-class port city in southern Iran. He emigrated to the United States in the 1990s.
RIRI RIZA (Director)
Born in Indonesia in 1970, he studied screenwriting and earned a Master of Arts degree at Royal Holloway, University of London. His first feature film, “Sherina's Adventure” (Miles Fims, 2000) proved to be a great success. His second film, “Eliana, Eliana” (Miles Films, 2002) was invited to many international film festivals and he was acknowledged as a film director representing Indonesia. His film, “The Rainbow Troops” (Miles Films, 2008) is one of the top five biggest hit in Indonesian film history. He continues to produce films that are accepted by public while incorporating social issues.
Koko Maeda (Producer)
Making a debut as a film producer with Shunji Iwai's 'Swallowtail Butterfly' in 1996, continued producing 'All about Lily Chou Chou'(2001), 'Hana and Alice' (2004), produced with Iwai 'Rainbow Song'(directed by Naoto Kumazawa, 2006). Worked on a big hit TV drama 'GTO' to a feature film and produced 'Big Show' in 1999. Expanded the field of activities overseas such as Hong Kong, Taiwan and US, joined with Wong Kar-wai's Hong Kong film '2046' in 2003, Taiwan's 'Silk'(Su Chao-bin) in 2006 and produced Quentin Tarantino's 'Kill Bill' in 2003 and 2004. In 2007, started up own production company Alchemy Productions to create more original films and expand activities. It's first original work '100 Yen Girl' by Yuki Tanada which was a big hit in 2008. The next original work was 'Patisserie Coin de rue' in 2011 with Yoshihiro Fukagawa. Challenged with popular TV director Yukihiko Tsutsumi for a social film 'MY HOUSE' in 2011. Tried to discover and develop talented directors from various area like theater and commercial field. Selected an acknowledged commercial director Show Yanagisawa for an original work 'Lost and Found' in 2014 which was selected to both Montreal Film Festival and Shanghai Film. Also picked out a featured stage director Toru Hosokawa to direct his first feature film 'Southern Wind Sea Maneuvers' in 2012. Continued working with Hosokawa and his second film 'Golden Orchestra' and the thrid new film 'Hikitas are expecting' was selected this year's Beijin Film Festival and released in October 2019.
Sunao Katabuchi is an animation director born in 1960. He made his directorial debut with a TV series “Famous Dog Lassie” (1996). Some of his main works includes animated feature films “Princess Arete” (2001), “Mai Mai Miracle (2009), and “In This Corner of the World” (2016)
Born in Onomichi, Hiroshima Prefecture in 1938, Nobuhiko Obayashi started making films at the age of three, with a kinetoscope he found in the family storage room. After moving to Tokyo, he screened his independent film Émotion, shot on 16mm, at art galleries, halls and universities, and received glowing reviews. The Person Who Is Eaten （Tabeta Hito, 1963） won the Jury Award at EXPRMNTL, an international competition of avant-garde films held in Belgium. He then became involved in the early days of TV commercials, and created over 3,000 commercials, often with foreign stars such as Charles Bronson, Sophia Loren, Catherine Deneuve and many more. His first feature, House （1977）, won the Blue Ribbon Award along with Hitomi no Naka no Houmonsha （The Visitor in the Eye）, released the same year. Obayashi also made I Are You, You Am Me （1982）, The Little Girl Who Conquered Time （1983） and Lonely Heart （1985） which were shot in his hometown and adored by fans, who called them the Onomichi Trilogy. Obayashi won numerous awards inside and outside of Japan: The Discarnates （1988） won the Mainichi Film Award for Best Director; Beijing Watermelon （1989） won Best Director at the Yamaji Fumiko Movie Awards; Chizuko’s Younger Sister （1991） won the Saturn Award for Best Fantasy Film; The Rocking Horseman （1992） won Best Film at the ACA Film Awards; Sada （1998） won the FIPRESCI Prize at the Berlin International Film Festival; The Reason （2004） won Best Director at the Japan Movie Critics Award and Honorable Mention at the Fujimoto Prize; Casting Blossoms to the Sky （2011） won the Grand Prix at the Tama Cinema Forum; Hanagatami （2017） won Best Director at the Kinema Junpo Awards and top prize at Mainichi Film Awards, and more. Recent works include Japanese pop idol group AKB48’s music video So long! The Movie （2013）, a youth version of Casting Blossoms to the Sky, and Seven Weeks （2014）. Despite being diagnosed with lung cancer in 2016, Obayashi completed his War Trilogy, which includes Casting Blossoms to the Sky （2011）, Seven Weeks （2014） and Hanagatami （2017）.
Born in 1986. During Nippon University Collage of Art of Cinema, he began to work in Japanese Film industry. His theatrical feature debut was “Oh, Father!”(2013). He won the best screenplay prize at 9th Asia International Film Festival with “Phantom Limb”(14). His filmography includes “7s”(15), “Innocent Blood”(17), “Evil”(18),”Ao no Kaerimichi”(18) and “Day and Night”(19).
Born in 1988 in Kanagawa. He made his acting debut in “Samurai Sentai Shinkenjâ”(2009). He won Best New Actor of 85th Kinema Junpo Award and Best New Actor of 33rd Yokohama Film Festival with “We Can't Change the World. But, We Wanna Build a School in Cambodia.”(11) and “Life Back Then” (11). And he won Newcomer of Year in Awards of the Japanese Academy with "The Wings of the Kirin"(11),"Until the Break of Dawn"(12) and "Love for Beginners"(12). Since then he is active in various fields of the cinema, TV drama and TV commercial etc... His filmography includes "All-Round Appraiser Q: The Eyes of Mona Lisa"(14), "Maestro! "(15), "The Emperor in August"(15),"Piece of Cake"(15),"The Last Mission"(15), "Mozu the Movie "(15), "The Top Secret: Murder in Mind"(16),"Sanada 10 Braves "(16),"Her Love Boils Bathwater"(16),"Kiseki: Sobito of That Day"(16),"Yurigokoro"(17),"Birds Without Names"(17),"Impossibility Defense "(18),"Call Boy "(18),"The Blood of Wolves"(18),"Iwane: Sword of Serenity"(19) and "Listen to the Universe"(19).
Zoe Lin Kuan-hui
LIN graduated from Taipei National University of Art, Major in Director, Graduate School of Filmmaking. She likes to create the story with the elements of fantasy, mixed with humorous, warm and moving materials. Even the solemn subjects are mingled with humor, which can make the audiences feel warm and hopeful after watching the movies. Her short “ Time Lapse ” won Grand Prix Award in 2010 Damah Film Festival in Hiroshima, Japan. First feature film " Secrets in the Hot Spring " nominated Program “World Fantastic Blue” of Bucheon international Fantastic Film Festival 2018, and had 9 Taipei Film Award nomination at 2019, include the Best Narrative Feature nomination, won the Best Supporting Actor Award and the Best Makeup & Costume Design Award.
Happy Hsu Chin-wan
Happy Hsu graduated from Soochow University, Major in the Department of Japanese Language and culture. She established the MacGuffin Film Production Co., Ltd. together with Director Lin Kuan-hui in 2015. Besides the producer department, she also worked in the director team and production design team of feature films. She believes that coordinating with the crew organization more perfectly, familiarizing the operation of each department and standing on the ground of each department help to improve the overall efficiency and cohesion of the work team. Her produced films include “Secrets in The Hot Spring”, “We are family”, “Cha Cha for Twins”, Film television “Mother Mother”, and short films “Time Lapse”, “Dear Mr. X”
She started her career in entertainment as one of the personnel of a vocal group of four, BLINK. She then got into acting when she got a role in some TV series, such as Putih Abu-Abu and Diam-Diam Suka. Pricil brought Jessica, her role in Glorious Days, very lively. She succeeded in bringing the character in an adorable way, it made her the new Indonesian sweetheart.
Lutesha made her acting debut in My Generation （Upi Avianto, 2017） at the age of 23 and she was nominated by Piala Maya for Best Newcomer Actress. The following year, she starred in a drama feature film Ambu （Farid Dermawan, 2019）, and a series called Halustik. Her performance in Halustik received Asian Academy Creative Awards nomination for Best Actress in A Supporting Role. Glorious Days （Riri Riza, 2019） is her newest feature film where she elegantly brings out her best performance yet.
CHOI Hyunyoung graduated from the Sangmyung University in Seoul 2011, where she majored in both film studies and Japanese language and literature. She studied international cultural policy and management at the University of Warwick in the UK. Her short film “The after…” won the Grand Prix at the 1st Damah Film Festival in Hiroshima 2009. The film was screened at 14 film festivals around the world and received the best director award at the 8th Asia-Pacific University Film Festival. Her short film “The intruder of love” was nominated for the 50th Daejong Short Film Festival.
Iria Gómez Concheiro
Iria Gómez Concheiro studied at the Centro de Capacitación Cinematográfica （C.C.C.） She is co-founder of the production company Ciudad Cinema, with which she has produced various independent projects in Mexico, Colombia, and Italy.With her graduation short film 'Dime lo que sientes' （Tell me what you feel） she has received more than twenty national and international awards.With her first fiction feature film 'Asalto al cine' （The Cinema Hold Up）, won the 'Cine Cinema' award at 'Cine en Construcción' of the Toulouse Film Festival and the ‘Casa de las Américas’ award for postproduction at the San Sebastian Film Festival.Asalto al cine had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and was recently awarded the Best First Feature award at the Guadalajara Film Festival. It was also part of the 'Horizontes Latinos' competition at the 2011 International Film Festival of San Sebastián and also un Warsow.With her Second Film, Antes del Olvido （Before Oblivion, Best Mexican Picture Guanajuato International Film Festival） with the support of Eficine, Ibermedia, Proimágenes Colombia and Procine DF, she´s looking forward to find the distribution of the film in the world.Today Iria is looking forward to get founds to film her next projects: Here be dragons and Absence.
Born in 1961 in the city of Takayama in Gifu Prefecture, Yumiko started appearing as a reporter in news and children’s programs on NHK Gifu after graduating from Kinjo University. She then worked as a writer for a monthly magazine, Home Economics Wise. Later, she established a production company, Heisei Project Inc., in Tokyo and has been constantly producing a number of films and TV programs. She is the author of three books that tell her story of film making as a housewife.
Kazuhiko Tanaka was born in Ehime Prefecture in 1954. He graduated from Waseda University, School of Political Science and Economics in 1977. He entered Nankai Broadcasting Co., Ltd. in the same year as an announcer. He served various roles including a newscaster, an anchorman, a sportscaster of baseball or soccer and a radio personality of popular programs such as "Pops Hiko Hiko Time". He has produced more than 30 original radio dramas with the theme of excavating history of his hometown, Ehime Prefecture, as his lifework. He won the Arts Festival Award by the Agency for Cultural Affairs in 1985 for "Revenge of the Red Shirt". He won the Radio Grand Prix at the first Japan Broadcast Culture Awards in 2005 for "The Prisoner of Sakura". He became the president of Nankai Broadcasting Co., Ltd. in June 2014, after serving as director general of programming bureau, director general of radio bureau and manager of the Nankai Broadcasting Co. president's office.
HIKARI is an award-winning writer, director and producer. Her directorial debut feature 37 Seconds （19） premiered at the 69th Berlinale and received Audience Award and CICEA Art Cinema Award and was nominated for the Best First Feature Award. Other credits include Tsuyako （11, Winner of DGA Student Award etc）, "A Better Tomorrow" （13, Live action-Animated Adventure） and dance short film Where We Begin （15）.
Born in Osaka on 14th October, 1994. She became a cerebral palsy soon after her birth.Graduated from the Faculty of Social Welfare of Nihon Fukushi University, and obtained a social welfare qualification. In this film, women who have physical handicapped were recruited from all over Japan, and Hikari chose her out of about 100 applicants as the leading role. This is her first acting performance.
Koya Kamura has been fascinated by the power of images since his childhood, and excited about all sorts of movies such as “The Godfather” （Director: Francis Ford Coppola）, “Memories of Murder” （Director: Bong Joon-ho）, and “A prophet” （Director: Jacques Audiard）.The Fukushima disaster gave a strong impact on him because he has two hometowns in Japan and France, therefore it took years to get over his trauma of it. After directing TV commercials for ten years, he began writing his first fiction film “Homesick”; two years after the Fukushima disaster, a father is getting inside the no-go-zone to spend time with his eight years old son.
Richard Raymond is a British film director. His short film shot in 2018 “Souls of Totality”, contains a one-cut-shooting during a real solar eclipse for the first time in cinema history. The film won the awards at 12 International Film Festivals, He was also awarded a "Special Mention for Direction" at the Edinburgh International Film Festival. He started his directing career in 2015 with the feature film "Desert Dancer", based on the true story of the Iranian dancer named Afshin Ghaffarian. The film was selected for the opening film at the 30th Santa Barbara International Film Festival and it screened at Lincoln Center, the United States Capitol, the United Nations, and the Edinburgh International Film Festival, where it was runner-up for the Audience Award. Desert Dancer was also nominated for the prestigious Golden Frog at Camerimage. Richard is currently working on the feature film "One Thousand Paper Cranes", based on the true stories of Sadako Sasaki and author Eleanor Coerr.
BAI RUI XUAN
Bai Ruixuan has written, directed and produced short films, music videos and commercials, as "Cocoon" "Acousma" "Orbit" "Grind" etc. “Orbit” was selected for the St Kilda film festival. He was in charge of an Assistant Director at the famous productions in Hollywood and Independent films such as "The Great Wall", "Pacific Rims",” Asura" "Wished". He splits his time working and living in China, Australia and the U.S.
Ricardo Soto （Mexico City, 1988） studied film direction at Centro de Capacitación Cinematográfica （Mexico）. As new director, he has been selected at Berlinale Talents （2014）, Filmmakers Academy of Festival del Film Locarno （2013）, Talent Demo by Camerimage （2015）, MexiCannes 2015 （GIFF in cooperation with Cinéfondation Cannes） and IDFAcademy at IDFA （2018）. He has been a two-time grant winner of FONCA and received the Artistic Residence 24/7 in Berlin by Nipkow Programm, Goethe Institut, GIFF and Medienboard Berlin Brandenburg.
As a PM at CM production company AOI Pro, he worked on a wide variety of works and won numerous awards in Japan and abroad, including the 57th International Cannes Festival. In 2012, he became a free director. In 2013, “Momentary Girl” was released as a late show. In 2015, when the film was screened in Hollywood, he began working on creating works that were conscious of overseas. In 2019, the short film “Drifting Post” won the Best Film in Foreign Language Short Films at the Nice International Film Festival, and was screened at 12 film festivals around the world, creating beautiful artistic paintings and delicate human details. The production is highly appreciated by the world. In recent years, it has been evaluated not only for its production but also for its planning capabilities, such as “Universal Sponsored Cinematic VR Idea Competition” and “VR Creator Lab”, a global project run by DayDream by Google × YouTube × VR Scout.
Director, screenwriter. He graduated from the Directing Department of Beijing Film Academy in 2005, directed many films and short films. In 2008, his first urban comedy “Super 50” was invited to the exhibition of Hawaii International Film Festival and Italian Far East International Film Festival. His short films, “Hong Zhong’s Diary” and “New Year” have also been well-received at both domestic and international film festivals. In 2013, “Balala Little Magic Fairy Big Movie” with Alpha Animation won #1 at the box office in the category of the Local Teen movie. The following year, Mr. Cartoon Pictures invited him to direct “I Love Big Big Wolf 2” which set a record of box office championship for the first day of the same type of film in summer. In 2016, he won Hiroshima Grand Prix Award and the Audience Award in Hiroshima International Film Festival, and the Most Popular Film Award for his film “The Gift”
Born 1977 in Kure City, Hiroshima Prefecture.Sakoda made a short film “This Window, Other Side” in 2004, while studying at the New Cinema Workshop. After graduation, he made the short film, “Inside of…” which was selected and screened at various international and domestic film festivals.While preparing for his next feature length movie, Sakoda suffered from depression and spent 3 years in and out of hospitals. He made his comeback with a middle-length film, “My Father’s Mistress.” starring Megumi Asaoka. Sakoda currently lives in Kure City. “you are Here, you were Here” is his debut work in the feature length format.
Fujiko Kojima was born in Tokyo in 1993. She made her acting debut in the TV Asahi drama “Aren’t You a Criminal?” in 2008. She attracted attention with her playing the role of Maria in “A Little Princess Sara” in 2009. Her representative works include the NHK’s year-long historical drama “Hana Moyu （Burning Flower）”（2015） and the NHK’s morning dramas “Carnation”（2012） and “Hiyokko （Chick）”（2017）. She first played the leading role of the film in “Uma no Hone （Horse Bones）” in 2018. Other films she acted include “Shodo Girls （Calligraphy Girls）”（2010）, “High & Low: The Movie”（2016）, “Yell for the Blue Sky”（2016）, “Hyouka: Forbidden Secrets”（2017）, “This Old Road: Konomichi”（2019）. Her recent drama “Yuri Dano Kan Dano （Is It a Lily?）”, which was made by Fuji TV for internet distribution and broadcasted later, became a topic of conversation.
KIKI SUGINO boasts an already prolific career as actress and producer with films like “Hospitalité （2010）, which won her the Best New Actress Award at the Yokohama Film Festival, “Odayaka” （2012）, Au revoir l'été” （2014） and “Chigasaki Story” （2015） to her credit. Her directorial debut, “Kyoto Elegy,” premiered at Tokyo IFF in 2014, and her second feature, “Taksu” （2014）, won her the Rising Director Award at the Busan IFF. Sugino has worked widely in Asia, and has already been the focus of special sections devoted to her work at TIFF and the Taipei Film Festival. Her recent directorial work is “Snow Woman” （2016）, premiered at competition of Tokyo IFF in 2016. She appears as main role of Bulgaria-Japan co-production film "Picture with Yuki" by Luchezar Avramov （2018）.
After graduating from Tama art university, Komatsu joined TOHOKU SHINSYA Co., and became a freelance film director since 2011. She has directed more than 500 commercials so far, and she has an excellent reputation for her unique direction which draw out the vivid expressions of the casts, and also its detailed beautiful pictures. She has mainly directed TV commercials, music clips, short movies, movies, plot, illustration, and now been extending her fields.