The first Japanese film nominated for ‘Best Picture’ will air on HBO Max

WarnerMedia, the company that owns HBO Max, has announced that it has acquired the Japanese drama Drive my car.

drive my car received Academy Award nominations in four categories – Directing, International Feature, Adapted Screenplay, and Best Picture, making it the first Japanese film ever nominated in the category.

drive my car screened at the Cannes Film Festival in July 2021, then made its theatrical debut in August in Japan. Finally, it debuted in US theaters on November 24, 2021.

The film follows recently widowed actor and theater director Yūsuke Kafuku. After receiving an offer to direct an adaptation of the Russian play “Uncle Vanya”, Kafuku travels to Hiroshima for a theater festival, where he meets young driver Misaki Watari.

The film goes deep, confronts love, loss and moves on. With a 98% Tomatometer rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it’s no surprise WarnerMedia wants this hit.

Axel Caballero, director of WarnerMedia OneFifty, shared why he believes drive my car deserves the awards. “As WarnerMedia’s ‘artist studio where innovation happens’,” Axel told Deadline, “OneFifty has a proven track record of identifying incredible artists whose vision we believe in and acquiring their extraordinary content and Drive My Car is no exception, it’s a beautiful masterpiece – a subtle yet haunting work of artistic vision and innovation by a talented filmmaker and creative team.

The film will premiere on HBO Max on March 2, 2022. So mark your calendars as Japan makes history.

Marie A. Evans