‘Ryuichi Sakamoto Opus’ Concert Film Set for China Theatrical Release

Concert documentary, “Ryuichi Sakamoto | Opus,” directed by Neo Sora, will open in mainland Chinese cinemas on May 31.

The film had its world premiere in official selection at the Venice festival last year. That was followed by an acclaimed run at the New York, London and Camerimage festivals.

Japanese composer Sakamoto, who was awarded an Oscar, a BAFTA, a Grammy and two Golden Globes, had a four-decade career that stretched from techno-pop to Oscar winning scores on films including “Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence,” “The Last Emperor,” and “The Revenant.”

Sakamoto died in March last year after a lengthy struggle with cancer. Before his demise, he curated and performed piano at a final concert, comprising 20 pieces of music that he chose and ordered himself.

The concert film includes his popstar Yellow Magic Orchestra period to his iconic “Emperor” film score and meditative final album, “12.” Variety‘s review of the film called it a “glorious final performance.”

In China, the film is being overseen by JL Film, which previously gave a re-release to “La La Land” at the end of 2023. In 2022, JL Film was on board “Life Is Beautiful” and “Wrath of Man” and in 2019 it was behind the China release of “Knives Out.”

The deal was brokered by London and Paris-based sales and production house Film Constellation.

Theatrical releases are currently underway for the film in North America (Janus), South Korea (Media Castle), Taiwan (Cai Chang), Hong Kong and Macau (Edko Films), Singapore (Anticipate Pictures), the U.K. and Eire (Modern Films), Spain (Filmin/Elastica), Germany and Austria (Rapid Eye), Scandinavia (Njuta), Portugal (Midas Filmes), Australia (Hi Gloss), the Baltics (Kino Pavasaris).

“Ryuichi Sakamoto | Opus” will release in Sakamoto’s native Japan later this month through Bitters End, with other outings in New Zealand and Italy later this year.

The film is produced by Sora Norika and Eric Nyari, Albert Tholen (Bruiser) and Masubuchi Aiko.

The film is executive produced by Jeremy Thomas with whom Sakamoto collaborated on some of his most iconic film scores, including “The Last Emperor” and “Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence.”

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