Tokyo Project Gathering extends reach

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TOKYO -- The upcoming Tokyo Project Gathering, the co-production market that will operate Aug. 21-24 in conjunction with the 20th annual Tokyo International Film Festival, is broadening its horizons as it appeals for entries this year.

This will be the third edition of the TPG. Last year's event attracted 28 foreign and domestic projects. Organizers have set a target of 50 for this year, though they emphasize that the quality of the proposals is more important than the quantity.

"Our aim is to find financing and find co-production partners, arrange presales and distributors for film proposals, but we're a very young market still -- this is only our third year -- and so we're seeking a new role that makes us stand out," TPG director Hiroaki Uchiyama said.

Projects can include live films, television programs, animated productions, adaptations of comic books or computer graphic-based projects, but Uchiyama is particularly keen to focus his efforts on unearthing novels that can be turned into screen productions as well as a remake market.

"This focus on remakes is unique to the Tokyo Project Gathering, but Japan has so much content in this area to offer," he said, pointing to Hollywood's long tradition of remaking original Japanese works including "Godzilla," "Shall We Dance?" and the "Ring" horror movies.

In 2004, he added, the Korean adaptation of the Japanese manga "Old Boy" won the Grand Prix de Jury at the Festival de Cannes.

"We believe this is a good opportunity for anyone interested in remaking titles and will help to put new life into the industry," Uchiyama said.

The deadline for applications is July 31. More information is available at www.tiffcom-tpg.jp.
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