Since J-pop idol group Arashi went on hiatus at the start of this year, the members of Arashi have been busy with their own solo activities. The latest news revealed that Kazunari Ninomiya will be starring as Ken Kasugai in a movie called Tang, which is based on a heartwarming English novel A Robot In The Garden.
Ninomiya’s first movie since Arashi went on hiatus, Tang, which will release in Japan in 2022, follows the story of game addict Kasugai, who is abandoned by his wife. Feeling disoriented in life, he meets a broken robot named Tang that has lost its memory, and begins an adventure together.
As it is Ninomiya’s first time acting with a robot, Tang will be a challenging piece of work, be it in terms of the acting plans or the shooting style. But with the production by Warner Bros. and visual effects by Shirogumi (known for producing animated film Stand By Me Doraemon), there are high hopes for Tang.
“I’m especially looking forward to seeing Kazunari Ninomiya, who portrayed Saigo in Letters From Iwo Jima, play the role of Ken,” Deborah Install, author of A Robot In The Garden, commented regarding the live-action adaptation. “With his sensitivity and sense of humour, I think he is the perfect person to portray Ken.”
Takahiro Miki, the director of Tang, said that creating a fusion of live-action and computer graphics was challenging, but it was also a work with hidden potential. In this world where people were increasingly intolerant of others, Miki hoped that the fantastical story could give people courage to accept others and themselves.
Ninomiya also commented that at first glance, the story seemed unusual, but it was actually a relatable story about friendship. “Personally, it is an impressive film, which I tried very hard to follow the director’s direction. I hope you will look forward to the release,” added Ninomiya.
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