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Tarō Minamoto's Fūnji-tachi Historical Manga Inspires Live-Action Show

posted on by Karen Ressler
Period drama slated for beginning of 2018

A live-action television special based on Tarō Minamoto's Fūnji-tachi (Soldiers of Fortune) manga has been green-lit. The show will air on NHK at the beginning of January 2018 as a New Year's jidaigeki (period drama).

The drama is titled Fūnji-tachi ~Rangaku Revolutie-hen (Dutch Studies Revolution Story). The story focuses on the beginning of Dutch studies with the first Japanese translation of a Western medical textbook. (In the Edo period of Japan, "Dutch studies" was the term used for Western learning, as the Dutch were the only group of foreigners allowed in Japan.)

Kōki Mitani is writing the script and Kiyoko Ogino is composing the music. The drama stars Ainosuke Kataoka as Maeno Ryōtaku, Shinya Niiro as Sugita Genpaku, Kōji Yamamoto as Hiraga Gennai, and Masao Kusakari as Tanuma Okitsugu. [Note: Historical Japanese names are listed family name first, while modern names are listed family name last.]

The historical comedy received its first compiled book releases in the early 1980's. Most recently, LEED Publishing re-released the series in 20 "wide edition" volumes in the early 2000's. The Fūnji-tachi: Bakumatsu-hen sequel is still running in LEED Publishing's Comic Ran magazine.

Source: Comic Natalie

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