Love and Lies – 恋と嘘 [Live Action Coverage]

Furusawa Takeshi (Another, ReLIFE) takes the directorial seat for the LA of manga artist Musawo’s Love and Lies – Koi to Uso (恋と嘘), a tale about forbidden love and living under the watchful eyes of an overzealous Japanese government. Showgate will distribute the film and also employs the writing services of Yoshida Erika to translate Musawo’s work into the silver screen. Morikawa Aoi headlines the LA, with Kitamura Takumi and “Gekidan EXILE” member Sato Kanta playing rivals. The release is tentatively announced for Fall 2017.


What the Movie is all about: Lies are forbidden and love is doubly forbidden. In the near future, when young people in Japan turn sixteen, they are assigned a marriage partner by the government. People don’t have to go through the trouble of looking for someone, and everyone accepts that the government will find a suitable partner to make them happy. Aoi Nisaka (Morikawa Aoi) is a high school student. She is in a love triangle with childhood friend Yuto Shiba (Kitamura Takumi) and Sosuke Takachiho (Sato Kanta). Sosuke Takachiho is appointed by the government to become her husband.

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Tokyo Ghoul – 東京喰種 [Live Action Coverage]

Based on the original work by Ishida Sui, Tokyo Ghoul is one of the most fascinating and original series about seemingly ‘normal’ human beings but in fact are monsters with an insatiable appetite for human flesh. Like vampires who beguile and trick humans, ghouls also hide their true nature. A 12-episode animation series of Tokyo Ghoul was broadcasted in 2014 and Shochiku will take the lead in the production of the LA version – giving the directorial task to newcomer Hagiwara Kentaro. It stars Kubota Masataka who will play the main protagonist Kaneki Ken.


What the movie is all about: Tokyo Ghoul is set in an alternate reality where ghouls, individuals who can only survive by eating human flesh, live among the normal humans in secret, hiding their true nature to evade pursuit from the authorities. The story follows Kaneki Ken, a college student who barely survives a deadly encounter with Kamishiro Rize, his date who reveals herself to be a ghoul. Due to circumstances, he ends up being taken to the hospital in critical condition. After recovering, Kaneki discovers that he underwent a surgery that transformed him into a half-ghoul. This was accomplished because some of Rize’s organs were transferred into his body, and now, like normal ghouls, he must consume human flesh to survive. The ghouls who manage the coffee shop Anteiku take him in and teach him to deal with his new life as a half-ghoul.

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Ajin:Demi-Human- 亜人 [Live Action Coverage]

Ajin:Demi-Human is a manga series written and illustrated by Gamon Sakurai. It has an anime version (a trilogy) produced by Japanese 3DCG animation studio, Polygon Pictures. The live-action adaptation is under Toho, with Bayside Shakedown director Motohiro Katsuyuki and stars Satoh Takeru in the lead role, with Ayano Go, Chiba Yudai, Shirota Yuu, Hamabe Minami, and Yamada Yuki as supporting cast. The film is scheduled to be released on 30th September 2017.


What the movie is all about: The LA centers on a student, Kei Nagai (永井圭), who discovers he is an immortal referred to as Ajin. The realization only came when he was hit by a truck, died but actually recovered. He becomes a target for the government as Ajin are considered dangerous semi-human beings. While the government claims to help Ajin live in a safe environment, they are using them as subjects for cruel and inhumane experimentation. As a result, many Ajin that have escaped are bent on revenge with a specific Ajin, Sato (Ayano Gou), planning to destroy humanity. Is Kei the only one who can stop him?

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Live action Coverage: Timeline + Buzz for Death Note! Kenichi Matsuyama & Tatsuya Fujiwara returns!

The Death Note movies of Kenichi Matsuyama and Tatsuya Fujiwara serve as my introduction to Japanese live-action movies. Matsuyama is especially memorable in Death Note for the perfect combination of subtle, thrilling and comedic acting. I saw the first Death Note movie after I watched Matsuyama in Norwegian Wood. Somebody told me about his almost perfect portrayal of the world’s “greatest detective.” Matsuken’s L is what I imagined the fictional character would be in real life.

That was late 2011, a few years after the first Death Note movie was released. Five years later, we’re into the fifth live-action adaptation of the manga made famous by Tsugumi Ohba, with illustration by Takeshi Obata. 

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Fukushi Sota takes us on a trip under the clouds as casting for Donten ni Warau Live Action gets revealed

We’re halfway 2016 but I can’t help but feel I’ve missed a memo at some point. I mean, live action adaptations have been a constant thing in the Japanese movie industry, but with over a 35 of those projects having been released or announced in these first six months I feel like we’ve hit a new height.

You could say that it’s a thing for a lot of romance series to get adapted when they’re nearing the end, but this time around it’s the big names such as Death Note, Full Metal Alchemist, Gintama, Tokyo Ghoul, Isshuukan Friends (One Week Friends), and Sangatsu no Lion (March Comes in Like a Lion) that are on the schedule. When it comes to the big ones you can debate that most of them were somewhat expected, but there’s a lot of random stories that have seemingly slipped under the radar only to suddenly show up in front of us with announcements. This time around, we’ll be laughing under the clouds.

Donten ni Warau(Laughing Under the Clouds) is a six-volume manga series which started in October 2010, and ended May 2013. It received an anime adaptation nearly a year and a half later, as well as a stage play which debuted February 2015 and got a second run recently. Earlier this year, the next part of the project was officially revealed to be a live action adaptation.

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On Live action adaptations: Favorite live action through the years + Is there a point to the making of Japanese live action adaptation? So what’s the point if it sucks? [ Vol 1, Part 1]

Now that’s the question we are all here to try to answer!

In filmmaking, video production, and other media, live action refers to cinematography or videography that does not use animation (though sometimes based on an original animated series). As the normal process of making visual media involves live-action, the term itself is usually superfluous, but it makes an important distinction in situations in which one might normally expect animation, as in a Pixar film, a video game, or when the work is adapted from an animated cartoon, such as Scooby-Doo, The Flintstones, 101 Dalmatians films, or The Tick television program. The phrase “live action” also occurs within an animation context to refer to non-animated characters: in a live-action/animated film such as Space Jam, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Looney Tunes: Back in Action, or Mary Poppins in which humans and cartoons co-exist, “live-action” characters are the “real” actors, such as Bob Hoskins and Julie Andrews, as opposed to the animated “actors”, such as Roger Rabbit himself.

As you may have noticed in the wiki definition, the examples are all Hollywood-based movies and actors.

As an intro, please take the survey below [poll] with 5 particular live action adaptations featured – Hana Yori Dango, Death Note, Hana Kimi, Kimi ni Todoke, Nodame Cantabile and you’ll be asked which are your personal bias and favorites.

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To put it simply, in the Japanese scene, live action adaptation refers to movies based on manga and anime. Aside from Japan, the US and France belong to the top 3 producers of Live action adaptation based on original manga and comics. I’m not going to go deeper into the differences or similarities of manga and comics, but would like to concentrate on the following:

[1] An introduction to Japanese live action movies; popular genres of manga and anime; a journey down the live-action lane;

[2] Statistics on live action films through the years; survey on favorites and list of top 10 live action movies [based on manga and/or anime]

[3] A look at future productions and mentions of filmmakers, innovators, manga artists (and actors who made waves in the live action scene, including voice acting); and finally answer the question: Do most live action adaptations suck?

In Part 1, we’ll take a bird’s eye view at the current state of live action affairs!

Continue reading “On Live action adaptations: Favorite live action through the years + Is there a point to the making of Japanese live action adaptation? So what’s the point if it sucks? [ Vol 1, Part 1]”

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