Eita, Matsuda Ryuhei to get sequel series, “Mahoro Ekimae Tada Benriken”

The movie “Mahoro Ekimae Tada Benriken” is getting a sequel, this time in the form of a television drama series. Eita (29) and Matsuda Ryuhei (28) will return in their starring roles.

The movie, which opened in Japan in April 2011, was based on a Naoki Prize-winning novel by Miura Shion. The story revolves around two former classmates who end up working together as “benriya” (someone available for hire for odd jobs), building a friendship as they take on various jobs together.

The drama series is titled “Mahoro Ekimae Bangaichi” and will be broadcast on TV Tokyo. Omori Tatsushi directed the movie, but the drama series will be handled by One Hitoshi (“Moteki”). Shooting is scheduled to start in April, but TV Tokyo will not air the series until sometime next year.

Eita and Mitsushima Hikari in new series – “Soredemo, Ikite Yuku”

Eita (28) will be starring in a new Fuji TV drama series this summer, with Mitsushima Hikari (25) playing the heroine of the story. The two just played a married couple in Miike Takashi’s upcoming movie “Ichimei” – a remake of the classic film “Seppuku” which will be competing at the Cannes Film Festival this month.

The drama series, titled “Soredemo, Ikite Yuku,” revolves around a man (Eita) whose younger sister was killed by a friend, who meets the friend’s sister (Mitsushima) 15 years after the incident. Both of their families have been burdened with grief, but through their meeting they struggle to find a brighter tomorrow.

This is Eita’s first drama series since his father passed away in February. However, he indicated his desire with this role to express his own struggle of starting from sadness and despair and working to find hope.

“Soredemo, Ikite Yuku” will air on Thursdays at 10:00pm, starting in July. Oda Kazumasa (63) will provide the theme song, “Tokyo no Sora,” while pianist Tsujii Nobuyuki (22) will be handling the show’s background music.

Eita to lead “Wild 7” movie adaptation

It was announced on Friday that Mochizuki Mikiya’s action manga “Wild 7” is being turned into a live-action film, starring actor Eita (28). The adaptation is being directed by Hasumi Eiichiro (“Umizaru”) and produced by Abe Shuji (“Umizaru,” “Always: Sanchome no Yuhi”).

“Wild 7″ was originally serialized in Weekly Shonen King from 1969 to 1979. The story revolved around a group of seven motorcyle-riding outlaws who are authorized by the police as a special unit to fight criminals and terrorists. The comic was adapted as a live-action drama series in 1972-1973. Mochizuki later wrote multiple sequels to the series, and it received both an OVA project in 1994-1995 and an animated series in 2002.

In the new version, Eita plays the leader Hiba Dairoku, who is the youngest of the group.

Warner Bros. is distributing the film, which is expected to shoot from late March to May. The release date has not been decided.

Eita and Kenichi Matsuyama to star in otaku movie about trains

Eita (27) and Kenichi Matsuyama (25) will co-star as a pair of railroad otaku in a new movie titled "Bokutachi Kyuukou ~A Ressha de Ikou~," directed by Yoshimitsu Morita ("Kazoku Game," "Shitsurakuen").

Morita, who has liked trains since he was a child, has apparently been brewing the script for decades. The story depicts the bond between two railroad enthusiasts who meet while riding the same train.

True to his passion, Morita plans for more than 80 varieties of trains to appear in the film, likely setting a record for a Japanese film. In addition, the characters in the movie have all been given names such as Komachi and Azusa, which are names of existing trains.

The supporting cast includes Keiko Matsuzaka (58) and Shihori Kanjiya (24). Filming wrapped up earlier this week, and the finished work is expected to be released in fall 2011.