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7 years — SEVEN FREAKING YEARS! — after starring on Yuki Tanada’s One Million Yen Girl, Yu Aoi is finally going to star in a new movie as a lead. The lucky production? An live-action adaptation of Yamauchi Mariko’s (山内 マリコ) book AZUMI HARUKO wa Yukuefumei (アズミ・ハルコは行方不明), which translates to Azumi Haruko Is Missing, which will be directed (and most likely adapted) by Daigo Matsui (松居大悟).

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My Japanese is going to the gutter. lol

BUT! The internet (meaning me) is all excited about it! Actually, I see a lot of tweets on it, but I’m too lazy to read or google-translate them, so I will just pretend we’re all excited about this.

YesAsia has an “English title,” and lists it as Lonely Girl Has Gone.

I don’t know what the book is about, if you do- tell me. Other essential info? Apparently it started shooting in mid-September, and it’s set for a 2016 release.

Sources: Natalie, Yahoo JP. Big version of this photo on Eiga.

Yeh Dil Vole! xD

Anyone who’ve seen both Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s 1996 directorial debut Khamoshi: The Musical (Silence: The Musical) and last year’s Belgian-French La Famille Bélier -by Eric Lartigau- can spot the similarities between the two (as well as the 1996 German film Beyond Silence (Jenseits der Stille) by Caroline Link). You can even spot the similar plot points by either reading the outline or watching the trailer.

In the pivotal emotional punch of the movie, the daughter (played by Manisha Koirala and Louane Emera respectively) auditions to the coveted singing position, when her (deaf) parents -who had been against the idea- show up to see their daughter perform both vocally and in sign language. Koirala (voiced by playback singer Kavita Krishnamurthy) doing Yeh Dil Sun Raha Hain (This Heart Is Listening), and Emera singing Je Vole (I Fly).

Though Lartigau’s more modern take is much more musically accessible (let’s be honest, the film starts out with 2008 staple That’s Not My Name [1]), it’s also lighter. Bhansali’s story focuses a big chunk of his running time to tell the story of Manisha’s parents, also incredibly played by Nana Patekar and Seema Biswas, their struggle to raise a (hearing) child in near poverty levels, to the point that Patekar goes door to door with his daughter to make a living selling things.

Of course, both also have a love interest, and both Salman and Ilian Bergala are the weakest link.

I declare- DRAW!

I’m on a high after watching Shunji Iwai’s The Case of Hana & Alice, which is honestly just wonderful. The film opened back in February with both Yu Aoi and Anne Suzuki back in their roles and promoting the film. I ran into a short interview they did for Filt for their Feb-Mar’15 edition, which feature this beautiful picture of the both.

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… and their 3D pencil doodle.

All photos by Fumihito Katamura.

Tell me the truth- did you miss this enthusiastic me? All these up to date project announcements take me back years into fandom when we all used to talk about all things Yu! Anyway, the latest in one of the few project announcements in Yu Aoi’s repertoire [1][2] is that she’s set for Nobuhiro Yamashita’s latest film titled Over Fence (オーバー・フェンス), which is an adaptation of a story in the anthology Kogane no Fuku (黄金の服) by Sato Yasushi.

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The film also stars Odagiri Joe and Shota Matsuda.

Over Fence completes a trilogy based on Sato’s stories, beginning with Sketches of Kaitan City (海炭市叙景) and The Light Shines Only There (そこのみにて光輝く).

Sources: Eiga.com, Film Business Asia

Yu’s officially three-decades-old… but still is as cute as ever, even though she’s trying to be all grown-up and stuff. Just sit her in front of a nice matcha shaved-ice with red beans (or a velvety choco-purin), and you’ll get her all giddy.

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That’s exactly what happened when promoting Dr. Rintaro on the Japanese variety Pon! with co-star on-screen mom Atsuko Takahata, who -I must say- is hilarious, too. These are obviously via the Yu Aoi Chinese fans. Watch the video. It’s 10min. long and it takes a while to load (for me).

She also did the Lilo & Stitch voice-over event [1], and apparently got back together with someone from her Oha-girl days, so they did an Oha greeting! lol

Oh, man. I remember how much I used to love Yu-chan. xD I think I’m going to watch Climbing to Spring without subs, and hope to watch The Case of Hana & Alice now that it’s out on DVD.