By Kevin Ouellette - May 20, 2012 6:27pm EDT (1 year ago)
Today it was revealed that Junichi Okada of the boy band V6 will be playing Zero fighter pilot Kyuzo Miyabe in a film adaptation of Naoki Hyakuta’s popular novel Eien no Zero. Takashi Yamazaki of the ALWAYS: Sunset on Third Street franchise will direct.
Okada, who has never appeared in a war-themed project before, is taking the role very seriously and plans to chop a good deal of his hair off before filming begins. Co-stars Haruma Miura are Mao Inoue are equally prepared for the June start date.
In the film, Miura plays a young man named Kentaro Saeki who has been trying unsuccessfully to realize his dream of passing the bar exam. Together, with his freelance writer sister, he begins investigating the circumstances surrounding their grandfather Kyuzo’s death in a kamikaze attack during the Pacific War.
Kyuzo had an unusually strong fear of death and unmatched will to survive, so why would he volunteer for suicide? They unexpectedly discover that their grandfather’s Navy comrades referred to him as “gifted, but a coward”. The two of them uncover astonishing facts which have been sealed for 60 years.
Okada will play Kyuzo, a Zero fighter pilot who continually professed his desire to “return to his wife alive”, even as the Japanese military faced increasing odds of defeat. Inoue will play his wife.
Distributor Toho has announced principal photography of “Eien no Zero” will begin in June on-location in Amami Ōshima, Chiba City, and Ibaraki with the inclusion of lots of large-scale aerial acrobatics shot from the sky. It will take about three months to shoot. After post-production, it should be ready for release in Japan around spring 2013.
Edit: Fixed Inoue’s role