The National Film Center in Tokyo’s Kyobashi district is to reopen as the National Film Archive of Japan, a newly independent institution, on April 1.

Until now a part of the National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo, in the Takebashi district the National Film Center will become a national museum, Japan’s sixth, under its new guise.

The National Film Archive of Japan will remain in the same building as its predecessor, close to the upscale Ginza district.

At a news conference held Feb. 6, the museum’s operators pledged to promote film culture by making the most of the facility's collection and supporting younger film directors, adding that independence will strengthen its activities.

The National Film Center was first established in 1952 as the film library of the modern art museum that also opened the same year. It is the only state-run facility that preserves, collects, and shows films. It conducts investigative research and boasts about 80,000 rolls of Japanese film and 90,000 or so film-related books, such as film scripts.

The facility’s independence from the museum had been discussed for more than a decade.