Belle, the latest anime feature film from acclaimed director Mamoru Hosoda (Wolf Children, Mirai) is set to take stage in the United Kingdom next month with a pair of premiere screenings as part of BFI London Film Festival and Scotland Loves Anime.
The BFI London Film Festival have announced that they will host the UK premiere of the hotly anticipated film, which will be the only animated feature In Competition for the festival’s Best Film Award. Belle will be shown at the BFI Southbank cinema on Thursday 7th October at 17:50 and Sunday 10th October at 14:15, before being shown at Curzon Mayfair on Sunday 17th October. Tickets go on sale for BFI members on 14th September, and for general audiences on 20th September.
Between those dates, however, Belle will also be performing her Scottish premiere as part of Scotland Loves Anime, with the festival announcing it as their previously teased Mystery Film, which will be playing at Edinburgh Filmhouse on Saturday 16th October at 15:20.
Anime Limited, who have licensed the film for the United Kingdom and France, describes the film’s story as follows:
Suzu is a 17-year-old high school student living in a rural village with her father. For years, she has only been a shadow of herself. One day, she enters “U,” a virtual world of 5 billion members on the internet. There, she is not Suzu anymore but Belle, a world-famous singer. She soon meets with a mysterious creature. Together, they embark on a journey of adventures, challenges and love, in their quest of becoming who they truly are.
Belle had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on 15th July, where it was met with a 14-minute standing ovation – widely regarded as the seventh longest in the historic festival’s history. The film opened in Japan the following day, where it topped the box office for its opening two weeks, and has continued to hold onto its number 2 spot at time of writing. Belle is the eighth feature film by director Mamoru Hosoda, and the fourth produced by Studio Chizu, which he co-founded. His previous film, Mirai was nominated for Best Animated Feature at the 91st Academy Awards in 2019, and for Best Animated Feature Film at the 76th Golden Globe Awards.