We have yet to see actress Kuroshima Yuina in the most anticipated TV drama series of 2022, “Chimudondon“, but that doesn’t mean she’s not doing other work and in the film “Akegata no Wakamono-tachi” we see her showing a mature side and her amazing acting talent. See the film’s trailer below for a preview:
Actress Toma Ami (15) will be making her TBS drama debut on the show “Tsuma, Shougakusei ni Naru.” that’s set to start on 1/21. After having been scouted on Okinawa in October 2020 and making her CM debut as an actress for Recruit’s commercial (shown above) in July 2021, Ami has landed her first drama playing the role of Izumo Rion (a middle schooler who is a novelist). Every actress from Okinawa has hit it big so we wish the same for Ami!
Chinen Rina to play the role of Winifred Banks in the musical “Mary Poppins” that will be performed at the Umeda Arts Theater in Osaka in May and June 2022. This month (October) also happens to mark Rina’s 25th year in the entertainment industry! To celebrate the milestone Sony Records has released all 81 of Rina’s Sony-era songs worldwide.
A social media event called the VOICE PROJECT is aiming to get people involved in voting using popular celebrities of varying ages and backgrounds in a YouTube video (watch below). One of the celebrities featured is actress Nikaido Fumi and she starts off the video which you can see above includes English subtitles. Although this is for the Japanese audience, it can also apply to voting around the world and is similar to the USA’s “Rock the Vote“. The hashtag #わたしも投票します (#ImVotingToo) is being used for the Voice Project.
You can catch actress Higa Manami on the Netflix (in collaboration with TBS) drama “Japan Sinks: People of Hope” currently streaming with new episodes every week (started on 10/10). Manami plays the role of Amami Kaori who starts the series separated from her husband Amami Keishi (played by Oguri Shun who happens to be the husband of Uchinanchu and popular model/actress Yamada Yu). When searching Netflix for the show, be sure not to confuse it with the anime of the similar name (both are based off of the novel “Japan Sinks“).
We’re really excited to see how Luchu and its people are portrayed in this upcoming drama from NHK called “Chimudondon” based on the life of Higa Nobuko. The heroine (pictured above) of the drama is played by Kuroshima Yuina and is set to air in the Spring 2022 TV season. And in case you’re wondering about the theme song, it hasn’t been announced yet so we still have hope that it’ll be an artist from Luchu.
And, yes! We have two additional Uchinanchu that were announced as cast members for the upcoming NHK asadora “Chimudondon”. You probably noticed that we mention Gori a lot and now we get to mention his Garage Sale partner Kawata Hiroki! You may recall him from “Churasan” so it’s great to see him on this new asadora too (it would be funny if the characters are somehow related but I don’t think that’ll be happening 😂). In “Chimudondon”, Kawata will be playing the role of the master at Sunset Burger so it sounds more of a supporting role.
The other Uchinanchu cast member is radio personality and free-announcer Kyan Hitomi who will be playing the obaa role for the Aragaki family.
So all that remains is the theme song and artist. We’re hoping that it’ll be Anly (from Iejima).
So a funny thing happened. While we were excited to hear about an upcoming NHK Asadora that takes place in Okinawa called “Chimumdondon“, we were also holding our breath to see how the rest of the cast would play out. NHK is slowly rolling out the names of the drama’s cast and when they started off with Nakama Yukie (playing the role of the heroine’s mother Higa Youko) we all breathed a sigh of relief — until the rest of the names (only Yukie is Uchinanchu) was announced 😂. As the cast announced is only of the Higa (heroine’s) family and the theme song’s singer hasn’t been determined yet, we can only hope that we’ll see more Uchinanchu represented in a drama that’s. Set. In. Okinawa.
But, yeah, we know. Ryukyu no Kaze. Churasan. Should we just be happy that there’s a large production (from NHK) that’s filmed in Okinawa and features a few Uchinanchu in its cast and crew?
Speaking of Aragaki Yui’s marriage announcement, she joins a growing list of popular actresses/singers from Okinawa with Uchinaa-muuku (son-in-law of Okinawa) husbands.
2021 Hoshino Gen (actor) to Aragaki Yui
2017 Kamiyama Ryuji (actor) to Chibana Kurara
2016 Inoue Yoshio (actor) to Chinen Rina
2014 Mukai Osamu (actor) to Kuninaka Ryoko
2014 Tanaka Tetsushi (actor) to Nakama Yukie
2012 Oguri Shun (actor) to Yamada Yu
2012 Akanishi Jun (musician) to Kuroki Meisa
2012 Hiro (musician) to Ueto Aya (her mother is from Ishigaki-jima)
1997 Sam (dancer) to Amuro Namie
1979 Shinoyama Kishin (photographer) to Minami Saori
I recall a couple of guys in Okinawa lamenting that all the pretty Okinawan women go to outsiders. For myself, as long as they’re both happy that’s what matters the most.