Kashii Yu will lead a new drama for TBS – Somato Kabushiki Gaisha

Kashii Yu will star in the new TBS psycho thriller drama titled ‘Somato Kabushiki Gaisha’ starting on July 16th. Kashii married actor Odagiri Joe back in February 2008, and gave birth to a baby boy in February 2011. This will mark her first comeback since.

The story will revolve around a mysterious place called ‘Somato Kabushiki Gaisha (Somato Inc.)’. It’s a place where people can see a visual representation of their life in the form of DVD’s.

‘Somato Kabushiki Gaisha’ will begin airing on July 16th, every Monday at 00:20am.

Erika Sawajiri to return to television with TBS’s “Akujo ni Tsuite”

Sawajiri Erika (25) will star in a drama special on TBS titled “Akujo ni Tsuite,” it has been announced. This will be Sawajiri’s first time acting in a television drama (not counting mobile TV) since a special episode of “1 Litre no Namida” in 2007.

“Akujo ni Tsuite” is an adaptation of a 1978 novel by the late writer Ariyoshi Sawako. The novel was a masterpiece of its time, and it was also notable for having a television drama airing as it was being serialized in a magazine.

Sawajiri plays Kimiko, the main character of the story who has died. Although the title implies that it is a story of a “wicked woman,” the original novel was divided into 27 chapters, one for each “testimony” by someone who knew Kimiko at some point in her life, providing a range of perspectives on what kind of person Kimiko was.

Sawajiri’s supporting cast has not yet been revealed, but expectations are high given the novel’s reputation and history.

“Akujo ni Tsuite” is scheduled to air on April 30.

Kinami Haruka in new “Kazoku Hakkei” drama series

This winter, actress Kinami Haruka (26) will take on her first starring role in a drama series. The drama is based on “Kazoku Hakkei,” a 1972 novel by sci-fi author Tsutsui Yasutaka (“Toki wo Kakeru Shoujo”) that was already adapted as a television drama in 1979 and 1986.

Kinami has been cast as Hita Nanase, a housekeeper with the psychic ability to read people’s minds, leading her to uncover the secrets of the households where she works. The character was previously played by Takigawa Yumi and Hori Chiemi.

Kinami entered show business in 2001 when she won Horipro’s New Star Audition. She appeared in the “20th Century Boys” movie series and was the female lead in the movie “Kimi ga Odoru, Natsu.” She has also played supporting roles in various television dramas, including “Yuusha Yoshihiko to Maou no Shiro” this past summer.

The new “Kazoku Hakkei” will be aired in a late night time slot on TBS starting in January. The series will be directed by “20th Century Boys” director Tsutsumi Yukihiko.

“Hanawake no Yon-shimai” drama series to star Mizuki Alisa

Actress Mizuki Alisa (34) will star in a new TBS drama series this summer, making her the first person ever to have a lead role in a drama series for 20 consecutive years. Her part this time is in “Hanawake no Yon-shimai,” based on a manga by Saimon Fumi (“Tokyo Love Story,” “Asunaro Hakusho”).

Serialized from 2005 to 2008 in Kodansha’s magazine Morning, “Hanawake no Yon-shimai” is a comedy depicting the ups and downs of four sisters. Mizuki plays the second eldest Takemi, who has divorced twice and is a single mother of three children.

Kichise Michiko (36) plays the eldest sister Fujiko, an “unbeatable” fashion magazine editor. Kanjiya Shihori (25) plays the third sister Sakurako, an employee at a wig maker who is easily swayed by others and who is searching for her true self.Kawashima Umika (17) plays the youngest sister Ume, a 2nd-year theater student at an art college who has zero experience in love.

All four of the sisters are connected somehow to a freelance photographer, played by NEWS member Kato Shigeaki (23). The sisters’ parents are being played by Endo Kenichi (49) and Miyazaki Yoshiko (52).

“Hanawake no Yon-shimai” will air in TBS’s Sunday 9:00pm time slot (currently occupied by “JIN”). The series will premiere sometime in July.

Kudo Kankuro wins 29th Mukoda Kuniko Prize for “Unubore Deka”

Writer and actor Kudo Kankuro (40) has been chosen as the recipient of the 29th Mukoda Kuniko Prize, an annual award for screenwriters. He earned the award with his screenplay for the TBS drama series “Unubore Deka” that aired last summer, starring TOKIO’s Nagase Tomoya (32).

During the press conference for the award held on Tuesday, Kudo talked about his experience with the Tohoku earthquake, since he is originally from the Miyagi prefecture. He revealed that he was unable to contact his family back home for about a week after the earthquake, but he finally was able to contact his mother and learned with relief that everyone was safe.

Kudo said that he hopes to contribute to the recovery of the affected areas somehow, particularly through his works as a creator. He also indicated that he plans to return to his hometown in Miyagi, as well as visit other areas like Minami Sanriku to see the situation firsthand.

The Mukoda Kuniko Prize was first awarded in 1982 and is named after screenwriter Mukoda Kuniko, who passed away in 1981 in the Far Eastern Air Transport Flight 103 accident.