GRIERSON AND ACADEMY AWARD WINNING PRODUCERS
STRIKE DISTRIBUTION DEAL WITH FILMBUFF TO BRING AUDIENCES INSIDE THE EXTRAORDINARY WORLD OF ‘LOVE HOTEL’
New York, NY – April 24, 2014 – Digital entertainment curator FilmBuff announced today, prior to the film’s World Premiere at the 2014 Hot Docs Film Festival, that they will release the much anticipated feature documentary, LOVE HOTEL, in theaters and on demand this fall, followed by a television release.
Directed by British filmmaker Phil Cox (The Bengali Detective) and co-directed by Japanese filmmaker Hikaru Toda, the film takes an intimate look at the little-known and extraordinary world of Japanese “love hotels.” At the crossroads of a centuries-old history and at the risk of being permanently shut down by “entertainment police,” audiences are taken for the first time behind the curtain in this personal film exposing the salacious side of one of the world’s most conformist societies.
Pay by the hour or the night. Order sexy underwear, fancy dress or anything else imaginable from the discreet and invisible reception staff. Anything goes at the Angelo Love Hotel in Osaka, run by Manager Ozawa and his efficient staff. Small living spaces, long work hours and the need for privacy drive 2.4 million Japanese a day to seek respite from their daily lives and visit “love hotels.” But now, these unique establishments are fighting to stay afloat and keep their original identities against draconian new laws implemented by an increasingly conservative government. In this intimate portrait, we meet the everyday people who frequent the fantasy-themed rooms for refuge, privacy and play: a married couple visit to keep a spark alive in their relationship; two gay lawyers have nowhere else to meet; a popular dominatrix runs a thriving business. Mixing humor and moments of great pathos, and filmed with a rich cinematic eye, LOVE HOTEL provides a rare glimpse into a secret world destined to disappear.
“After three years inside a Love Hotel, a space never before filmed, it is incredibly exciting to be teaming up with FilmBuff to release our film. The importance of fantasy, intimacy and play in all our lives, which are at the core of LOVE HOTEL’s ‘raison d’etre’, is a topic of great relevance in any modern metropolis or industrialized society – not just Japan. We are really excited to see how audiences will respond and connect to our film as it is released across different platforms,” said director Phil Cox.
“We are thrilled to be partnering with the filmmakers and their producers to release LOVE HOTEL throughout the world,” said FilmBuff’s Head of Content Steven Beckman. “The film provides a fascinating lens into a highly provocative and unique facet of Japanese society, yet manages to do so in a way that is relatable, compelling and engaging for audiences everywhere.”
The film was produced by Grierson Award winning company Native Voice Films (UK) and Academy Award winning company Bonne Pioche (FR) in partnership with France 2, BBC Storyville, RTBF, Sabotage Films Vienna, ABC, and with the support of CNC, MEDIA and Procirep. Producers are Giovanna Stopponi (The Bengali Detective) and Sophie Parrault (Waste: The Nuclear Nightmare). Executive Producers include Emmanuel Priou, Yves Darondeau, Christophe Lioud (March of the Penguins), Karol Martesko-Fenster (Hell and Back Again), Gernot Schaffler (Rush), and Thomas Brunner (Hell and Back Again).
LOVE HOTEL is in the Love, Factually section at the 2014 Hot Docs Film Festival. Screening times:
Saturday, April 26 at 6:00PM at TIFF Bell Lightbox 2
Monday, April 28 at 6:30PM at ROM Theatre
Saturday, May 3 at 6:00PM at TIFF Bell Lightbox 3
The deal was negotiated by FilmBuff Head of Content Steven Beckman and the filmmakers. FilmBuff will also be handling worldwide broadcast sales. For more information, connect with the film on Facebook.
Founded in 2007, New York-based FilmBuff is the leading distributor of incomparable digital entertainment. The Company draws upon its deep relationships within the film industry to curate content that consistently informs, entertains and inspires. FilmBuff designs innovative digital strategies to supply content to all on-demand outlets. Serving as a bridge between filmmakers and audiences, FilmBuff actively engages in conversations with fellow entertainment lovers through its exclusive access, original content and unique voice. Find FilmBuff content on all cable, satellite and telco services, game consoles, online retailers, wireless platforms and hardware manufacturers worldwide. Connect with FilmBuff www.filmbuff.com and @filmbuff.
Native Voice Films