by Chris MaGee
It was announced only two days ago that Kichitaro Negishi's screen adaptation of the Osamu Dazai story "Villon's Wife" was going to be going into competition against Miwa Nishikawa's "Dear Doctor" at this year's Montreal World Film Festival. Now comes word that Japan will be represented in another way at the festival, which runs from August 27th to September 7th.
Actor and director Eiji Okuda (above) has been asked to sit on the festival's jury, the very first time a Japanese director has had this honour. This isn't the first time that Okuda has been honoured by the World Film Festival though. In 2006 his film "Nagai Sampo (A Long Walk)", starring the late actor Ken Ogata as an elderly man who befriends a young girl from a broken home, was awarded the festival's top prize.
Ever since Yojiro Takita's "Departures" picked up the fest's top prize last year, the first of many, many awards on its journey to its historic Oscar win, people are viewing Montreal as a good indication of what Japanese films will hit big in North America, so the addition of Okuda on the jury is a very interesting development.
To check out more about this year's Montreal World Film Festival head to its official website here. Thanks to Tokyograph for this bit of news.