TBS is not holding anything back for their 60th anniversary fall drama, "Nankyoku Tairiku", already helming a star-studded cast of drama king himself, Kimura Takuya, Ayase Haruka, Sakai Masato, Yamamoto Yusuke, Shibata Kyohei, Terajima Susumu, Ogata Naoto, Kagawa Teruyuki, and Kimura Tae. Touted as the biggest drama production in the network's history, it has recently added even more stars, with Nakama Yukie, Sato Ryuta and popular child actress-cum-ratings puller, Ashida Mana to its stellar cast. Veteran heavyweight, Watase Tsunehiko has also joined this gigantic cast of charismatic actors.
"Nankyoku Tairiku" focuses on Japan’s first Antarctic research expedition team, which consisted of 11 members and 19 Sakhalin Huskies. The team stayed at the Showa Base in Antarctica for over a year until 1958 when a second team came to take over, but extreme weather conditions forced the teams to completely retreat from the base, unfortunately leaving behind 15 of the Huskies. When one of the dog handlers returned in 1959 with a third team, it was discovered that two of the dogs, Taro and Jiro, had somehow managed to survive.
The drama will not be a remake of the film. Instead, it will be an original script inspired by the book “Nankyoku Ettoutai Taro Jiro no Shinjitsu” by Taiichi Kitamura.
Ashida Mana plays the daughter of Furutachi Ayako (will be played by Kimura Tae), and also the granddaughter of Kuramochi Takeshi's university professor who imparted everything on the Sakhalin dogs to him. Kimura plays Kuramochi. Nakama Yukie plays Kuramochi's late wife, while Sato Ryuta plays a member of the third expedition.
Filming started in February and wrapped up after six months. Nemuro City in Hokkaido was used as the set for the Showa base in Antartica. The drama's production team have previously worked on hits like JIN, ROOKIES, MR. BRAIN, Karei-Naru Ichizoku, Byakuyakou, Suna no Utsuwa, Sekai no Chuushin de Ai wo Sakebu, and Good Luck!!, among others.
"Nankyoku Tairiku" will premier on Oct 16th, airing every Sunday at 9.00 pm. It will go up directly against Fuji TV's "Boku to Star no 99 Nichi" which stars Nishijima Hidetoshi and Kim Tae Hee in the same timeslot.
I see heavyweights everywhere in this drama. Good luck to Kimura, the whole cast and the production team. Hoping only success for this big-budgeted drama! :)
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