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Japan Film Festival of San Francisco

One Week of Japanese Inspired Films

The Japan Film Festival of San Francisco rolls into town July 23, 2016. For nine days, you get the chance to see dozens of movies focused on Japan and the Japanese community. The final day of shows is on Sunday, July 31.

The opening night performance will be at The Castro Theater. All other performances are at the New People Cinema in Japantown. This is an intimate cinema that seats 143 people in the basement of the New People building at 1746 Post Street.

When this film festival started four years ago, it was so popular it became an event people look forward to every year. It is now part of the larger J-Pop Summit Festival, a Japanese cultural fair that includes gourmet food, free live performances, and many other activities.

2016 Schedule

Here is the full nine-day schedule for this this year's Japan Film Festival of San Francisco. All shows are in Japanese with English subtitles.

July 23 | July 24 | July 25 | July 26 | July 27

July 28 | July 29 |July 30 | July 31

Saturday, July 23
12:00 PM Library Wars: The Last Mission 120 minutes New People Cinema
3:00 PM IA 1st Live Concert in Japan “Party A GOGO!” 45 minutes New People Cinema
4:15 PM Tokyo Short Shorts 2016  71 minutes New People Cinema
6:00 PM Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno 139 minutes New People Cinema

Sunday, July 24
12:00 PM A Bride for Rip Van Winkle 179 minutes
4:00 PM Cinema Kabuki “Nezumi Kozo: Noda Version” 110 minutes
6:30 PM Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno 139 minutes

Monday, July 25
6:30 PM Dou Kyu Sei – Classmates – 60 minutes
8:00 PM Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno 139 minutes

Tuesday, July 26
6:30 PM The Anthem of the Heart 119 minutes
9:00 PM Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno 139 minutes

Wednesday, July 27
6:30 PM Solomon’s Perjury Part 1: Suspicion 121 minutes
Solomon’s Perjury Part 2: Judgement 146 minutes

Thursday, July 28
6:30 PM The Boy and the Beast 119 minutes
9:00 PM Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends 135 minutes

Friday, July 29
6:30 PM Being Good 121 minutes
9:00 PM Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends 135 minutes

Saturday, July 30
12:00 PM DASHI & SHOYU: Essence of Japan 100 minutes
3:00 PM Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends 135 minutes
6:00 PM Three Stories of Love 140 minutes

Sunday, July 31
12:00 PM Happy Hour 317 minutes
6:30 PM Rurouni Kenshin: The Legend Ends 135 minutes

Other Festival Details

New People Cinema Theater

The theater is in Japantown at 1746 Post Street. It's across the street from the Japan Center Mall.

You can easily get here by taking one of these buses: 2, 3, 22, 31 and 38.

You will find parking in the Japan Center Garage. Enter on Post Street. You will find additional parking on Fillmore near Post Street at the Sundance Kabuki Theater garage. You enter this one from Fillmore Street.


All tickets are available online through their website. Most cost around $15 each with a small $1.60 service charge. This is the only way to purchase them before the festival begins.

They will also offer first come, first served tickets at the door during the festival. In addition, they will have a limited number of last minute tickets for sale at the door shortly before each film.

Click here to order them online in advance.

Places to Stay Nearby

You will find three great places close to the Japan Film Festival of San Francisco. Two are right in Japantown and one is just a few blocks away.

  • Hotel Tomo: 3-star with clean and spacious rooms, prices start at around $275 a night this time of year, 1800 Sutter Street

  • Hotel Kabuki: 3.5-star hotel that is a little more affordable, it's also clean and cozy, rooms start at just under $200 a night this time of year, 1625 Post

  • Queen Anne Hotel: 3-star that is about two blocks away, it's a cute historic place with a lot of character, rooms start at around $190 a night this time of year, 1590 Sutter

Before you book, make sure you also check out the great deals on TripAdvisor. They offer hotel specials for places all around SF. You might be able to get a discount on your room or freebies such as free parking or wifi. Check out their current deals today!

Best Places to Grab a Bite to Eat

You will find a number of great eats near the Japan Film Festival of San Francico. There are some amazing Japanese places inside the western half of the Japan Center Mall. There is an area on the first floor called Restaurant Row and you will find several great places there (one of my favs is Kushi Tsuru).

If you want something other than Japanese food, then head around the corner to Fillmore Street. There is a wide vareity of options here from pizza to indian food. These are some places to try.

  • Roam Artisan Burgers at 1923 Fillmore Street, $$
  • The Elite Cafe (Southern/Creole) at 2049 Fillmore Street, $$
  • Dino's Pizza at 2101 Fillmore, $$
  • Thai Stick at 2001 Fillmore, $$
  • Dosa Indian Restaurant at 1700 Fillmore, $$$

More J-Pop Summit Events

The J-Pop Summit coincides with the opening weekend of the Japan Film Festival of San Francisco. During this two day event, you can sample traditional Japanese cuisines, watch free performances at the Peace Plaza, and join in on several fun contests and activities.

Click here for a full schedule for the 2016 J-Pop Summit Festival in Japantown.

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