Japan Academy Awards: Cannes Entry 'Our Little Sister' Leads With 12 Nominations


'American Sniper,' 'Kingsman,' 'Whiplash,' 'Mad Max: Fury Road' and 'Spectre' compete in the best foreign film category.

Hirokazu Koreeda's Our Little Sister (Umimachi Diary), which competed in the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, received 12 nominations, including for all four lead actresses, best picture and best director, for the Japan Academy Awards, the country's version of the Oscars.

Our Little Sister competed for the Palme d'Or, following the director's Like Father, Like Son winning the festival's Jury Prize in 2013 and getting optioned for a remake by DreamWorks.   

The adaptation of Akimi Yoshida's manga will compete for the Japan Academy Prize, which will be handed out on March 4 at a ceremony in Tokyo.

It will be up against Yoji Yamada's Nagasaki: Memories of My Son (Haha to Kuraseba), which is in theaters now and received 11 nominations. It tells the story of a mother who has visions of her son who perished in the atomic bombing of Nagasaki. The 11 nominations for the veteran director is the most he has received since 2002, when his Twilight Samurai (Tasogare Seibei) won 12 from its record 15 nominations. Twilight Samurai was also nominated for the best foreign-language film Oscar, but failed to win.

Another wartime drama, The Emperor in August (Nihon no Ichiban Nagai Hi), Masato Harada's reimagining of a classic film about the last days of World War II, was also nominated in 11 categories.

Nominated in the best foreign film category at the Japan Academy Prize are American Sniper, Kingsman, Whiplash, Mad Max and Spectre.