One of Japan’s five major broadcast networks, Fuji TV has also been a pioneer and leader among the networks in feature film production. This year at TIFFCOM long-time partner Pony Canyon is representing Fuji TV films that have recently hit number one at the Japanese box office.
Among the hottest, with three straight weeks atop the rankings, is “Hit Me Anyone One More Time,” the latest comedy by veteran hitmaker Koki Mitani. As of Oct. 20, the film had earned a rousing $29 million on 2.45 million admissions. Starring Kiichi Nakai as an unpopular prime minister who suddenly loses his memory of his political misdeeds but decides to reboot his career, the film references real-life political figures, though its story is mostly for laughs and, at the end, tears.
Also on the line-up is “Come Kiss Me at 0:00 AM,” a teen romance, based on Rin Mikimoto’s best-selling comic, about an ordinary high school girl (Kanna Hashimoto) who attracts the romantic attention of a handsome movie star (Ryota Katayose) who comes to the school for a film shoot. But a guy who has known her since childhood (Gordon Maeda) has more than friendly feelings for her. With Toho distributing, the film opens in Japan on Dec. 6.
Likewise, fresh to the line-up is “Wotakoi: Love is Hard for Otaku,” a comedy based on the single-named Fujita’s popular manga about the improbable romance of two otaku (obsessed fans), one a female office worker (Mitsuki Takahata) who likes comics about gay love and one a salaryman (Kento Yamazaki) into computer games. The director is Yuichi Fukuda, whose credits include the two hit “Gintama” comedies. Release is set for Feb. 7, 2020, with Toho releasing.