Indie distributor Bitters End has finally set a theatrical release date in Japan for Christopher Nolan’s lauded “Oppenheimer” – after the Oscars.
The film will arrive in Japanese cinemas on March 29, the company said on Thursday. That date is some two and a half weeks after the Oscars ceremony (March 10 in Los Angeles, March 11 in Japan), at which “Oppenheimer” has a strong chance of winning multiple awards.
At the Oscars nomination event, earlier this week, “Oppenheimer” became the front-runner, collecting 13 nods, including best picture, best director and a trio of acting nominations.
Despite its critical and commercial success in cinemas around the world last year – it earned $952 million – the film is controversial in Japan. The two atomic bombs created by Oppenheimer and his team were detonated in 1945 over Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing hundreds of thousands of Japanese citizens.
The film was released in most territories in July by Universal. But Toho-Towa, which normally handles most universal titles in Japan as a sub-distributor, chose not go ahead with the release.
In December, Bitters End said that it had picked up the film “following months of thoughtful dialogue associated with the subject matter and acknowledging the particular sensitivity for we Japanese.”
“After screening the film, we feel Christopher Nolan has created a singular cinematic experience that transcends traditional storytelling and must be seen on the big screen. We invite the audience to watch the film with their own eyes when it comes to Japan.”
On social media, Bitters End said in December: “This is a spectacular true story drama that depicts the unknown life of a man who holds the fate of the world in his hands while at the same time facing a crisis that could destroy it […] It has been hailed as Nolan’s best work ever and is considered a top candidate for various film awards.”
Bitters End is no stranger to Oscar-worthy movies. It previously handled multi-Oscar winner “Parasite” in Japan and is currently playing Japan’s Oscar-nominated “Perfect Days.”