Set in 1970s Britain, "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy," which will be released in cinemas in Japan later this month, is based on the book of the same name by John le Carre centering on George Smiley, a retired spy who is called back by the British intelligence service to uncover a Russian mole.

The story begins with a failed mission in Hungary that prompts the search for the mole. The intelligence service — code-named the Circus — becomes engulfed in paranoia as the investigation into the activities of the five suspected double agents intensifies.

In an interview with Kyodo News in London, Swedish director Tomas Alfredson, 47, described the film as "not so much about the political sides of the Cold War but more about personal things."