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Japan’s Free Stone launches with Heaven’s Story, Kokuei package

Japanese sales company Free Stone Production is making its Cannes debut with award-winning Berlin title Heaven’s Story and a special package of avant-garde pinku (aka erotic) movies from Japanese production house Kokuei.

Directed by Takahisa Zeze, Heaven’s Story picked up both the FIPRESCI and Netpac prizes in the Forum section of the Berlin film festival this year. The four-and-a-half hour drama depicts the impact of a senseless murder, involving a young mother and child, across a period of eight years.

The Kokuei package has been hand-picked by Free Stone and Japan’s Stance Company. Produced and directed by major Japanese filmmakers, who have been experimenting with the pinku genre since the 1960s, the package includes titles such as Shinji Imaoka’s Lunch Box and Takahisa Zeze’s Tokyo x Erotica.

Also on Free Stone’s slate are comedies Sukiyaki, directed by Tetsu Maeda, and Thank You Gangsters, directed by Shohei Imamura’s protege Kosuke Oshida.

Founded in 2011, Free Stone aims to handle commerical and arthouse titles with links to Japanese directors and producers. The company has offices in Japan (Kobe) and Switzerland (Zurich) and has appointed Miyuki Takamatsu to head sales.

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