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Former Momoiro Clover Member Akari Hayami Stars in Again!! Live-Action Series

posted on by Sarah Nelkin
Kubo created original character of Ryōko Usami in manga about cheering squad by imagining her as being acted by Hayami

The staff of the live-action television series adaptation of Mitsurou Kubo's Again!! manga announced on Sunday that actress and former Momoiro Clover member Akari Hayami will star in the series as heroine Ryōko Usami. In addition, the staff announced that Toshio Li (Detroit Metal City) will direct the series. Hayami will star alongside Johnny's West member Ryūsei Fujii, who will play the main hero, Kinichirō Imamura.

In an interview, original creator Kubo revealed the secrets behind the creation of Usami and the casting of Hayami:

When I heard that Akari Hayami was retiring from Momoiro Clover in 2011, I wanted to do something to support her new career as an actress. Since I was right at the stage before beginning serialization of Again!!, I wanted to draw the heroine Ryōko Usami like she was being acted out by Hayami.

The live-action TV series will premiere on Japanese television on June 20. Ten 30-minute episodes are scheduled to air.

The story centers around Kinichirō Imamura, a high school third-year student who graduated without making friends or memories. However, he and his female classmate Akira take a tumble down some stairs, and they wake up after time-travelling three years in the past to their first day of high school. Kinichirō once Again!! meets a girl he adored, Usami. Usami is trying hard by herself as the leader of the school's ōendan (cheering squad), and in his second chance at high school, Kinichirō joins ōendan and vows to help rebuild it.

Kubo launched the manga in Kodansha's Weekly Shōnen Magazine in 2011. Kubo's Moteki manga also inspired a live-action television series, and the show in turn inspired a film.

[Source: Eiga.com]

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