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Fuji TV lines up ‘Nodame cantabile’

Two features based on drama series to be made

TOKYO — Fuji TV will produce two features based on its hit “Nodame cantabile” drama series about the life and loves of an aspiring pianist.

Juri Ueno and Hiroshi Tamaki will reprise their TV roles as the femme pianist and apprentice conductor with whom she falls in love, respectively. 

Shooting will start in May in locations around Europe, continuing for five months.

“Nodame” TV series helmer Hideki Takeuchi will also be behind the camera for the pics. Toho will release the first pic next December, the second in spring 2010.

Based on a comicbook by Tomoko Ninomiya that has sold 29 million copies, the TV series bowed in October 2006 and averaged an 18.9% rating. A two-part special that aired during the 2008 New Year’s holiday scored more than 20%.

“Nodame” is the latest of a series of multipart pics by local producers. The supernatural “Death Note” duology, produced by the NTV network, started the trend in 2006. Combined take of the pics was $86 million.

NTV is also making “20th Century Boys,” a sci-fi trilogy based on a hit comicbook by Naoki Urasawa about a convenience store clerk who discovers that the disastrous prophecies he wrote as a boy are coming true. The first part, released at the end of August, has earned $42 million.

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