The Tokyo International Film Festival and TIFFCOM market will hold the world premiere of Toshiro Saiga's Chesuto! at this year's Hong Kong Filmart on March 18.

Set in the south-western prefecture of Kagoshima, Chesuto! is a coming-of-age story about a female swimming instructor coaching a team of elementary school children for an ocean swimming contest.

The instructor is played by musician-actress Nao Matsushita (X-Cross) who also performs the film's theme song. The cast also includes Eiki Kitamura (Waterboys) and Kento Takahashi. Saiga and the cast members are scheduled to attend the Hong Kong event.

The story and screenplay by Erika Tosaka won the Japan Movie Angel Grand Prix, which awards winning projects with development funds.

The Tokyo fest and TIFFCOM market, now both under the CoFesta umbrella, have been using Filmart as a launch pad in recent years. Previous world premieres have included Shindo and Granny Gabai, both of which subsequently secured deals in Asian territories.

Chesuto! opens March 1 domestically through exhibitor-distributor T-Joy, which began foreign sales activities at last year's Pusan International Film Festival.