SciFi Japan

    AX Cinema Nights Screens 5 Beloved Anime Films in Theatres Nationwide This Fall

    Nationwide releases in the U.S. to screen both subtitled and dubbed versions of legendary Director Satoshi Kon’s PERFECT BLUE, TOKYO GODFATHERS and PAPRIKA as well as iconic anime films GHOST IN THE SHELL and COWBOY BEBOP: THE MOVIE
    Source: Iconic Events Releasing press release
    Special Thanks to Erik Jansen (MediaLab)

     Photo courtesy of Iconic Events Releasing.

    Iconic Events Releasing, a company specializing in distributing special engagement theatrical events to theatres, brings the action and bold visual storytelling of anime to the big screen as it announces a slate of upcoming nationwide theatrical events for the latest installment of AX Cinema Nights. A different acclaimed anime feature will be screened at over 300 theatre locations across the country beginning in September and continuing through February 2024.

    Celebrated films will include a Satoshi Kon Film Festival that will screen 3 of the legendary Director’s most renowned anime feature films as well as special presentations of GHOST IN THE SHELL and COWBOY BEBOP: THE MOVIE. Both subtitled and dubbed screenings are scheduled.

    AX Cinema Nights is a year-round movie event series celebrating the best new and classic anime films by bringing them to theaters across North America. It provides the passionate fan community with immersive and unforgettable experiences beyond the annual Anime Expo.


    PERFECT BLUE 25th ANNIVERSARY – Presented in partnership with GKIDS
    Screens Sept. 6th (sub), Sept. 7th (dub), Sept. 10th (encore of choice)

    GHOST IN THE SHELL – (Lionsgate)
    Screens Nov. 8th (sub), Nov. 9th (sub), Nov. 12th (encore of choice)

    Screens Dec. 11th (sub), Dec. 12th (sub), Dec. 13th (encore of choice)

    COWBOY BEBOP: THE MOVIE (Sony Pictures)
    Screens Jan. 21st (sub), Jan. 22nd (sub), Jan 23rd (encore of choice)

    PAPRIKA (Sony Pictures Classics)
    Screens in Feb. 7th (sub), Feb. 8th (sub), Feb. 11th (encore of choice)


     Photo courtesy of Iconic Events Releasing. ©1997 MADHOUSE. All Rights Reserved.

    PERFECT BLUE 25th Anniversary – AX Cinema Nights Satoshi Kon Fest
    Screening Dates: Sept. 6th (sub), Sept. 7th (dub), Sept. 10th

    Anime Expo Cinema Nights invites you to revisit PERFECT BLUE, the groundbreaking and rarely screened first film from the legendary director Satoshi Kon (Paprika, Paranoia Agent), as it returns to theatres for its 25th anniversary. Rising pop star Mima has quit singing to pursue a career as an actress and model, but her fans aren't ready to see her go... Harboring feelings of guilt and haunted by visions of her former self, Mima's reality and fantasy meld into a frenzied paranoia. As her stalker closes in, in person and online, the threat he poses is more real than even Mima knows, in this iconic psychological thriller that has frequently been hailed as one of the most important animated films of all time.


     Photo courtesy of Iconic Events Releasing. ©1995 • 2008 Masamune Shirow /Kodansha Ltd./Bandai Visual Co. Ltd./Manga Entertainment Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

    GHOST IN THE SHELL – AX Cinema Nights
    Release Dates: Nov. 8th (sub), Nov. 9th (sub), Nov. 12th (encore screening)

    Anime Expo Cinema Nights invites you to return to the visually stunning and poignant classic GHOST IN THE SHELL. 2029: A female cybernetic government agent, Major Motoko Kusanagi, and the Internal Bureau of Investigations are hot on the trail of "The Puppet Master," a mysterious and threatening computer virus capable of infiltrating human hosts. Together with her fellow agents from Section 9, Kusanagi embarks on a high-tech race against time to capture the omnipresent entity. Director Mamoru Oshii's award-winning cyber-tech thriller, based on the comic book by Shirow Masamune, is lauded as one of the leading Japanese animation films of all time.


     Photo courtesy of Iconic Events Releasing. ©Satoshi Kon/Madhouse/Tokyo Godfathers Committee. All Rights Reserved.

    TOKYO GODFATHERS 20th Anniversary – AX Cinema Nights Satoshi Kon Fest
    Release Dates: Dec. 11th (sub), Dec. 12th (sub), Dec. 13th (encore screening)

    Anime Expo Cinema Nights invites you to celebrate TOKYO GODFATHERS, the acclaimed holiday classic from master director Satoshi Kon (Paprika, Perfect Blue), as it returns to theaters to celebrate its 20th anniversary with a 4K restoration under the supervision of the original art director and producers. On Christmas Eve, three homeless companions stumble upon a baby girl in a garbage heap. They name her Kiyoko, and vow to care for her as they track down her family. Haunted by memories of their own broken pasts and pursued by a cast of shadowy characters from Tokyo's nightlife, Hana, Gin and Miyuki overcome their differences and learn to trust one another as a new, makeshift family. With the New Year fast approaching, the mystery behind baby Kiyoko deepens, and these unlikely heroes discover the surprising -- and sometimes miraculous -- connections that have brought them all together. Co-written by Keiko Nobumoto (Cowboy Bebop) and featuring a whimsical score by Keiichi Suzuki, TOKYO GODFATHERS is a masterpiece by turns heartfelt, hilarious and highly original, a tale of hope and redemption in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds.


     Photo courtesy of Iconic Events Releasing. © 2001 Sunrise Inc., Bones, Inc. and Bandai Visual Co., Ltd

    COWBOY BEBOP: THE MOVIE – AX Cinema Nights
    Release Dates: Jan. 21st (sub), Jan. 22nd (sub), Jan 23rd (encore screening)

    Anime Expo Cinema Nights presents COWBOY BEBOP: THE MOVIE. Caught up in a world of dreams, lost in the cruelty of reality. What should have been an easy bounty turns into biological war after a terrorist gets hold of a deadly virus. Drawn in by the pretty price on the mastermind's head, Spike and the Bebop crew are ready to collect a much-needed reward. Unfortunately, the gang's about to find themselves in more trouble than money when the terrorist threatens to unleash the virus on Halloween--effectively killing everyone on Mars. With little time and leads that seem more dreamy than helpful, they'll have to use their own bag of tricks to stop a dangerous plot.


     Photo courtesy of Iconic Events Releasing. ©Madhouse Inc. and Sony Pictures Entertainment (Japan)

    PAPRIKA – AX Cinema Nights Satoshi Kon Fest
    Release Dates: Feb. 7th (sub), Feb. 8th (sub), Feb. 11th (encore screening)

    Anime Expo Cinema Nights presents the final film by visionary director Satoshi Kon with his mind-bending thriller, PAPRIKA, which has been restored in 4K for the first time. When a machine that allows therapists to enter their patients’ dreams is stolen, all hell breaks loose. Only a young female therapist, Paprika, can stop it.


    About GKIDS

    Celebrating its 15th anniversary, GKIDS is the producer and distributor of award-winning feature animation for both adult and family audiences. The company has scored an astounding 12 Best Animated Feature Oscar nominations with THE SECRET OF KELLS in 2010, A CAT IN PARIS and CHICO & RITA in 2012, ERNEST & CELESTINE in 2014, THE TALE OF THE PRINCESS KAGUYA and SONG OF THE SEA in 2015, BOY AND THE WORLD and WHEN MARNIE WAS THERE in 2016, MY LIFE AS A ZUCCHINI in 2017, THE BREADWINNER in 2018, MIRAI in 2019, and WOLFWALKERS in 2021.

    GKIDS also handles North American distribution for the famed Studio Ghibli library of films, one of the world’s most coveted animation collections with titles such as SPIRITED AWAYMY NEIGHBOR TOTOROPRINCESS MONONOKE and others; as well as the critically-acclaimed television series,  NEON GENESIS EVANGELION. Also, GKIDS is the founder and host of ANIMATION IS FILM, the annual LA-based film festival which embraces animation as a cinematic art form, and is a vocal advocate for filmmakers who push the boundaries of the medium to its fullest range of artistic expressions.


    About Anime Expo

    Anime Expo brings together fans and industry from Japan, the U.S and all over the world for the largest celebration of Japanese pop culture in North America. Taking place every year since 1992, the Anime Expo convention features the best in Japanese animation, popular art, entertainment, music, fashion, and video games. The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA) is the parent company that presents Anime Expo and is now presenting the theatrical series, “AX Cinema Nights.” For more information, visit

    Instagram: @animeexpo
    Twitter: @animeexpo
    Facebook: @animeexpo


    About Iconic Events Releasing

    A fast-growing name in event cinema, Iconic Events Releasing brings live and captured entertainment to movie theaters ranging from special events to traditional full run releases. Programming includes live pay-per-view sports, horror & genre films, faith-based films, anime, concerts and music docs, and special repertory and comedy events. Iconic Event’s theater network represents the country’s preeminent cinemas offering enhanced guest experiences, high-quality food & beverage service, and reserved seating. More information is available at

    Instagram: @IconicEventsNow
    Twitter: @IconicEventsNow
    Facebook: @IconicEventsNow
    YouTube: Iconic Events

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