Ikuta Toma and Oguri Shun will work together again in the upcoming TBS Winter 2015 drama "Ouroboros" (timeslot undecided) which will be shown from January next year. The drama which is based on the manga by Kanzaki Yuya that had sold 1.2 million copies to date, is the first real-life adaptation production and the title means ancient symbols of a snake and dragon which bite their tails to form a circle that represents "death and rebirth" as well as "destroy & create". (Click here to see a picture of the ouroboros)

Ikuta and Oguri who are close friends and had last worked together in the 2007 FujiTV drama "Hanazakari no Kimitachi e ~ Ikemen Paradise", will be playing childhood friends Ryuzaki Ikuo and Danno Tatsuya respectively this time. Ikuo and Tatsuya who grew up together in an orphanage, chose entirely different paths in life where Ikuo is a clumsy and seemingly ordinary police detective who actually has the best arrest rate and is extremely fit. However, Tatsuya uses his good looks and cleverness to rise to the top of an yakuza organisation but secretly helps his buddy Ikuo to handle his cases. In addition, the two of them strive to find out the truth about the murder of their beloved Yuko-sensei who took good care of them at the orphanage 15 years ago. Back then, they had testified to the police that they saw the murderer but the case was written off by a police officer who they remembered was wearing a gold watch at that time. While trying to find the police officer concerned, they become unlikely allies who seek to punish evil when justice cannot be upheld by the law.

Filming is due to begin at the end of November.




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Comedian Oshima Miyuki won the best actress award for her performance in the new movie "Fukubukusou no Fuku-chan" in the 18th Fantasia International Movie Festival held at Montreal, Canada, on 9 August which makes her the first Japanese winner in 5 years since Mitsushima Hikari won it for her role in "Ai no Mukidashi" in 2009. The interesting thing is, Oshima shaved her head to play a man by the name of Fuku-chan who develops a phobia for women because of his first love (Mizukawa Asami) and later overcomes this condition when he reunites with her and falls for her again.

When interviewed about her win, Oshima commented that it was fascinating to win a best actress award even though she had acted as a man. She expressed her gratitude towards the director Fujita Yosuke for helping her to make the character Fuku-chan come alive. As for Fujita, he also praised Oshima for giving her all in playing this role and admitted that it was a gamble to get a woman to play a man but Oshima made the gamble pay off handsomely.

In response to Oshima's win, her husband Suzuki Osamu posted on his blog that he was very surprised to hear that his wife won the award by playing a middle-aged man which is something rarely heard of. Suzuki revealed that Fujita had brought the script to his wife some years ago before the March 11 tsunami crisis but there were many hiccups along the way before the movie was finally filmed. Suzuki expressed his joy at his wife's achievement and congratulated her for winning the best actress award.

Oshima is currently taking a break from work in order to prepare for motherhood.

The movie "Fukubukusou no Fuku-chan" will be shown nationwide in cinemas from 8 November.




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Singer BoA is releasing her eighth album in Japan in September, according to her agency SM Entertainment on Saturday.

It has been just more than four and a half years since she debuted a regular album in Japan. The singer’s seventh, “Identity,” was released in February 2010.

The new record not only includes new songs, such as “First Time,” but also some that were previously popular, such as “Call My Name,” “Message,” “Woo Weekend,” “Shout It Out,” “Milestone,” “I See Me,” “Close To Me” and “Baby You.” Each track came out after July 2010.

Songs released last month, like “Masayume Chasing,” are also included on the record, meaning that there will be 14 new tracks on the album in total.

“Masayume Chasing” is well known because it was the theme song for the TV animation “Fairy Tail” in Japan.

To celebrate the new album, BoA will hold a concert tour in Japan for the first time in four and a half years. The singer will start in Tokyo for two days starting Sept. 6 and will then move elsewhere, including Osaka and Fukuoka.

JoongAng Daily

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The newest album released by Korea’s Girls’ Generation has swept Oricon, the Japanese music chart.

The album, titled “The Best,” was released on July 23. It ranked No. 1 on Oricon’s daily and weekly album chart as of yesterday. Up until July 27, almost 75,000 copies of the album had been sold.

On the newest record, the nine-member group put together Japanese versions of many of its popular songs, including “Gee” and “Mr. Mr.” The album also includes the new ballad “Indestructible.”

The group recently completed its tour in Japan, which started on April 26. The group’s agency, SM Entertainment, said that 200,000 fans gathered to see the nine members during 17 performances in seven cities, including Hiroshima, Kobe, Nagoya and Osaka. The “Girls’ Generation Love and Peace Japan 3rd Tour” began in Fukuoka.

JoongAng Daily

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After two movies, “Pika☆nchi LIFE IS HARD Dakedo HAPPY” in 2002 and “Pika☆☆nchi LIFE IS HARD Dakara HAPPY” in 2004, it was announced that Arashi will star in “Pika☆nchi” latest installment with “Pika☆★☆nchi LIFE IS HARD Tabun HAPPY (version 2.5)“.

In the said movie, Shun (Aiba Masaki), Bon (Matsumoto Jun), Takuma (Ninomiya Kazunari), Haru (Satoshi Ohno), and Chu (Sakurai Sho), will again meet after 10 years due to a certain incident. The five of them will talked about their life during those 10 years that they were separated.

As for doing this movie, Matsumoto commented that they want to do something foolish again for their 15th anniversary since debut while Ninomiya said that the movie was done on a whim so expect it was put on loosely.

V6‘s Inohara Yoshihiko also provided the movie’s draft with Kawahara Masahiko (Pika☆ nchi series, Hachimitsu to Clover) in script, and Kimura Hisashi (Kindaichi Shounen no jikenbo, ATARU) will direct the movie.

The movie will be screened exclusively at Tokyo Dome City Hall for four times a day starting on Aug 1st to 31st. 250,000 audiences are expected to be mobilized.


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A Chinese newspaper reported: "ASKA of Japanese unit CHAGE & ASKA was arrested for drug abuse. The police's next targets are visual-kei singer GACKT and singer Miki Imai.

GACKT (40) updated his blog on the 7th and wrote, "What's going on with the international media? The Internet is scary. Anything from useless things to lies are written, as if they were all the truth. And then these make their way across the seas and just get blown out of proportion. I'm already getting sick of it all. Really, gimme a break. So are you telling me that writing groundless shi+ like this is freedom of speech, freedom of expression, and freedom of the press? Rubbish. It's all so stupid, it just makes me sad."


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A large amount of potato chips were disposed of in Kobe City and Akashi-shi of Hyogo prefecture, as the Hyogo Police arrested Ikki Fukumoto (25), an office worker who resides in Hyogo prefecture's Uozumicho Shimizu, for illegal dumping.

The suspect disposed 89 boxes, totaling to about 1,000 bags of potato chips (total weight of 208 kilos) between May 4 and May 23 in 6 areas within Kobe City and Akashi City, such as in the woods and in empty lots. The suspect comments: "I did buy a lot of these, but I didn't know what to do with them so I just dumped them".

According to the police, the potato chips came with entry stubs for a chance to win seiyuu Nana Mizuki's concert tickets, as Mr. Fukumoto only cut the stubs out and did not eat the contents. Entries were only valid until the end of May.


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Source: Mantan
Translated by: sparkles_n15 @ asianfanatics.net

Actress Inoue Mao attended a press conference on the 11th in Shibuya, Tokyo to announce the newly added cast to the 2015 NHK Taiga drama Hana Moyu. Actor Iseya Yusuke will play the role of Yoshida Shoin, the elder brother to Inoue's lead character Fumi. Kora Kengo has been cast as Takasugi Shinsaku, while Higashide Masahiro will play the role of Kusaka Genzui, Fumi's first husband. All three actors joined Inoue on stage for the press conference. Inoue expressed that she feels reassured having three ikemen acting alongside her. Smiling, she adds, "I think a lot of ladies will be jealous again."

Acting with Inoue for the first time, Iseya says that, "Today was the first time we met. I find her forehead very cute." Inoue laughs and agrees it's very wide. Kora expressed that he has admired Inoue since filming the morning drama Ohisama together. "When she's there, everyone feels reassured knowing we can rely on her." Kora was full of praises for Inoue, saying she is one of a kind. Inoue in turn says that Kora himself is one of a kind.

Hana Moyu is an original production following the life of Yoshida Shoin's sister Fumi. Yoshida was a feudal retainer from the Choshu domain who lived during the Bakumatsu period. Filming begins in August and the drama will air in January 2015. As previously announced, Osawa Takao will play Fumi's second husband, Katori Motohiko. The music for the series will be composed by Kawai Kenji, who previously worked on the drama Umechan Sensei.

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For the first time, there will be a public viewing for Arashi‘s “Wakuwaku Gakkou 2014“. Titled as, “ARASHI no Wakuwaku Gakko 2014 Deepening the Bonds of Friendship, Live Viewing in Shanghai” will be held at Shanghai Shallow Water Bay Culture Center on June 29th.

The said public viewing is a simulcast from Arashi’s “Wakuwaku Gakkou 2014″ event live in Tokyo Dome.

This is the fourth time that Arashi will be doing “Wakuwaku Gakkou” since the great earthquake back in 2011. The event will be held in two venues, at Osaka’s Kyocera Dome on June 7th to 8th and at Tokyo Dome on June 28th to 29th.

Ticket application period for the Shanghai screening will run from June 7th to 9th and participants will be chosen via lottery.


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Hajime Isayama's Attack on Titan manga sold 8,342,268 copies to rank #1 among comic series in Oricon's sales chart for the first half of 2014. In doing so, it ended One Piece's five-year reign (2009-2013) as the top-selling comic series in the same period. One Piece sold 4,936,855 copies at #2.

Isayama commented that he only imagined being #1 on Oricon as a once-in-a-lifetime dream. He thanked all his readers for making Attack on Titan #1.

Oricon's book ranking charts cover sales from November 18, 2013 to May 18, 2014 in Japan.

Attack on Titan ranked #4 in the first halves of 2011 and 2013, but this year is Attack on Titan's first at #1. In the first half of 2014, Attack on Titan nearly doubled its sales from the same period last year (4,292,208 copies).

The rest of the Top 5 comic series were Kuroko's Basketball at #3 with 4,616,040, Naruto at #4 with 3,247,920, and Magi at #5 with 3,085,177.

One Piece volume 73 was the top-selling single volume with 2,825,339 copies. (The volume debuted in March.) It was the only volume to top two million copies in the first half of 2014. In doing so, it maintained One Piece's six-year streak at #1 among single volumes.
Attack on Titan volume 12 sold 1,770,746 copies in ..... (article cut to save bandwidth)

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