The temporarily re-named Yubari Ouen Eigasai (translation: Yubari Support Film Festival) will run from Feb 22-25 and feature a selection of 20 films.
Launched in 1990, YIFFF had featured a combined programme of entertaining Hollywood films, independent films from Japan and abroad and cutting-edge genre work, as well as championing young filmmakers and digital cinema.
The new incarnation is for now scaled down and geared more toward screening mainstream fare with attached distributors providing support. Scheduled guests will also attend at their own expense. The fest is sponsored by the Yubari Tourist Association.
Titles include Japan premieres of Hollywood films such as Babel , which Gaga is scheduled to release in April, Rocky Balboa (20th Century Fox - April), Happy Feet (WB - March), Ghost Rider (SPE - March) and Dejà Vu (BVI - March).
Other premieres include Toshiba Entertainment and Tornado Film's Open Water 2: Adrift; the latest installment in the long-running Doraemon series, and Korean-Japanese co-production Virgin Snow. Independent Japanese titles such as Wool 100% and Meatball Machine: Reject Of Death will also screen.
The wintry event always received positive notices and attracted a diverse number of world famous directors and actors, both as guests and jury members, including Dennis Hopper, Shintaro Katsu, Kwak Jae-yong, Steve Martin, Hou Hsiao-hsien, Gaspar Noe, Pen-ek Ratanaruang and Quentin Tarantino.