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Japanese remake of Misaeng to star Nakajima Yuto

FujiTV plans to release the Japanese drama remake of tvN’s Misaeng this July. Tentatively titled HOPE – Zero Expectations New Employee, this adaptation of the 2014 hit webtoon-turned-drama will feature idol-actor Nakajima Yuto (Detective Ballerino) as the titular New Employee.

In Korea, Misaeng received ratings nearly unheard of for a cable drama, reaching the record of all-time second highest at its peak. The depiction of the daily struggles in corporate working culture attracted people from all different demographics to tune in and watch. Despite the dubious quality of many idol-actors, Im Shi-wan did a superb job portraying the bumbling new recruit in Misaeng. Let’s hope this holds true for Nakajima Yuto as well.

Nakajima first debuted in 2007 as part of group Hey! Say! JUMP, and has participated in several acting projects since then. He gained much love for his roles in Hanazawa Naoki and Detective Ballerino, and more recognition for his gravity as an actor through his work in the movie Pink and Gray. Regarding his role for the new drama, Nakajima said that he has set his heart on fully adopting the humble attitude of his character from the outset.

Whether the same slice-of-life portrayal of the daily grind that resonated so well with the Korean audience will also appeal to a Japanese audience is the main question.

HOPE – Zero Expectations New Employee plans to start production in May and premiere in July.

Via Xports News

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I don't know why but I super duper hyped ! jHAHA

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wow...Both a Chinese and a Japanese remake. I wonder how the Chinese one is coming along.

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He actually acted on Engine 2005 with Kimura takuya. I remember I liked him so much during that drama. The way he stole money form Kimura is still one of my favorite scenes and I still remember it after all these years.
Even though he was a kid but his acting was great.

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Hmmm. Saw him in Date, where he was okay but nothing noteworthy.

There are a couple of actors from his age group that are phenomenal (not only the best of their generation but simply actors that can compete with people 10, 20, 30 years their senior) that I would have personally preferred cast.... But I'm saying that because Misaeng is one my favourite kdramas ever so I sort want some my favourite j-actors in that role...

Nakajima might do fine, who knows.

Curious who else in involved – director, other casting, etc.

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I think Sometani Shota and Sosuke Ikematsu is good actor for this, Shota even had the young look like Siwan,

but yuto is not bad either, his character in date had not much to do actually

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who are those actors? i would like to check out their works o.o

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You should watch himizu or parasytr live actions for sometani shota

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Other people have mentioned them already – Kamiki Ryunosuke, Suda Masaki and Sometani Shota (for those born in the '90s). Though Sometani barely does dramas.

There's probably a couple others one could throw in for late-80's born.

One thing I do wonder about the remake is length – since jdramas are nearly always 10-11 episodes (often at 45 min) but Misaeng was much, much longer and had extra long opening episodes too. I suppose there could be condensing but actually I wouldn't want to lose anything from the storyline really....

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Sosuke Ikematsu - MOZU
Shometani sota - he did movies more often, drama, xxxholic,
almost every project he did is good it

for Nakajima yuto and Masaki Suda, I think Pink and Gray, they starred there together

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Sosuke Ikematsu – MOZU
Shometani sota – he did movies more often, drama, xxholic,
almost every project he did is good it

for Nakajima yuto and Masaki Suda, I think Pink and Gray, they starred there together

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I think Jdrama has many office story or incorporate many office worker in lots of drama,
Idk why I feel like this gonna more depressing type of adaptation, I feel Misaeng is already depressing so I hope this can be more funny.

I do like Nakajima Yuto, he is good imo,
but I think Sosuke Ikematsu or Shometani Shota can do a great job too,
but the real question is who gonna play Chief Oh?
My personal favorite it Masato Sakai but he already has this kind of role, how about Hiroshi Hasegawa?
I always think both of this actor can do no wrong, hahaa

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I loved Nakajima Yuto in Hanzawa Naoki so im excited about this!

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I'm inclined to look quite positively on anyone from Hanzawa Naoki, what a fantastic drama that was. Though of course, I know he isn't Sakai Masato.

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I know, I just finished the 2 seasons of Legal High and have Sakai's withdrawal...off to rewatch something from him :)

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I suggest old drama,
like Himitsu no Hanazono and OOku Tanjou (small ep)

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Many thanks for the suggestion!! I heard about this one but didn't knew Sakai was in there. I'm adding it to my list. :D

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Overall, I feel that Japan handles slice of life dramas far better than Korea in most cases so I don't see Japanese viewers having a hard time relating to it. Despite the heightened reality of Misaeng, it is such a relatable show to anyone who is starting out on the bottom rung of a corporation for the first time. I know that related to it quite a bit and found bits and pieces of each character resonating within me.

I hope the show is well cast, but I don't know if I can love these characters as much as the Korean characters.

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Agree on the Japan handling slices of life better and I feel confident that Japan will do a great remake of Misaeng. Heck, I'll probably watch the J-version first before K-version.

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I agree about Japanese "slice of life" dramas. I found myself boohooing after watching some (otherwise) mundane moment while watching a J-Drama. I was sort of embarrassed that I could NOT for the life of me explain why it moved me so much to other people, but it DEFINITLY resonated. *shrugs shoulders* Anyway, best wishes to the J-Team. I will most likely check it out, because I have been rather impressed and pleased with the few other J-Dramas that I have seen.

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I completely agree. For instance, I'd love to see a Korean 'Nobuta wo Produce' but I just find it impossible to imagine because I haven't seen anything close to it in terms of narrative treatment

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I would love for a Korean version take on Nobuta wo Produce although it will be either make it or break it. I remember hoping School 2015 to go on that route with what vibes their teaser posters oozing with but we knew what happened with that drama.

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Misaeng is first and foremost a Korean webtoon. The question is not whether they can adapt the tone of slice of life, but whether they can stay true to the Korean webtoon.

On one hand, at least Korean webtoon hopefully gets more recognized.

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I have no doubt that, if made well, Japanese audiences will appreciate the story of Misaeng. Along with the fact that many Japanese hows are slice-of-life to bein with, I believe that Misaeng is a universal story. Unless you're a spoiled rich person who has never had to work for something in your life, you can relate to Misaeng.

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I've seen the first three episodes of Misaeng (just never got around to continuing it), and the tone reminded me of a jdorama. so in this instance, this type of adaptation might actually work well.

Yuto has evolved as an actor, especially in Pink & Gray. heck, i'm willing to say he did better than Masaki Suda (cue the sound of disbelief!). Lastly, it's surprising that many aren't aware Yuto's part of Johnny's (HeySay). I've read in many jpn forums that the [general] audience/netizens didn't think of him as an idol.

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Misaeng was more jdrama-ish than ever. It's just bringing a familiar style home for the Japanese.

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Don't think I've ever seen this particular actor do their thing.

I didn't know Japan was doing a Misaeng re-make. They handle this kind of melancholy, thoughtfulness really well. I can imagine the J-drama making someone cry, lol. I'll watch it. O: I should do a re-watch of the original as well.

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One of my favorite dramas. I had a really hard time letting go of it when it ended. Super excited for this Jdrama remake. I will accept Nakajima Yuto as a lead of the drama, he is a good actor, better than others that he has acted with. It's also about time he had a bigger role in acting. Now to wait and see who else will be part of the cast.

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It's amusing how most respond on J-remake of Kdrama is mostly positive in contrast of K-remake of Jdorama.
Well, Yuto is not bad, he has his own charm (at least better than casting Fukushi Sota). And in term of acting, I find that J-idols are better than K-idol (don't forget that up till now the crown prince of Jdorama is still Kimutaku, which is an idol).
Misaeng is such a hit because it wasn't your typical Kdrama, on contrary it's typical Jdorama so while I don't see any problem in adapt it to dorama, I'm not sure it will reach success as Misaeng did.

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I don't know who is idol or not in Jdrama now, it seems like every young actor/actress is and everyone is not an idol, I can't even differentiate them, and yes if you include kimutaku SMAP gentleman as idol.

I just think there's lot of young talented actor in Japan now than (let's say) 5 years ago,
we have tons of big name now, with the exception of Fukushi Sota in male category.

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I think people are more confident about a j-remake of Misaeng because while the tone and subject might not be unique in Japan, jdramas have often pulled it off so the chances of things 'translating' right across cultures, is higher.

I hope they find a good cast though!

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It's strange but I actually feel more reassured of quality in a Japanese remake of a Korean drama than vice-versa. And this though I much prefer k-dramas in general. As for resonance, I think Misaeng had much more of a j-drama vibe as it is, it had those quiet slice-of-life moments and stark realism that I associate with doramas, so I'm sure it'll be completely familiar and acceptable to the audience as long as it's made well.

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I think I may watch both the Japanese and Chinese versions. I so loved Misaeng and I would like to see more of this type of drama so I am in. I am also curious to see what they will do about the baduk angle. It played so heavily in the Korean version.

Looking forward to this. :)

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So, does this mean there's no hope of a Misaeng Season 2? Why are all of my favorite dramas only one season?! And why give a second season to the ones that no one cares about or asks for?

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I think that's why I don't feel like to finish watching Misaeng because it remind me of j-drama a lot. I hope it will go through with this Japan remake.

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I took a break from jdoramas and movies because everything I watched made me cry. They really know how to handle slice-of-life stories. I have no worries about a remake and will probably check this out when it airs

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really? Japan has a lot of wacky, funny, and light romcom. Compare to kdrama, it has more choice.
Have you try watching Love Shuffle (strange approach of relationship but I love the friendship between char, wondering why korea hasn't remake it since it has hexagone love, not only square or triangle, in high society setting with luxury appartment and chaebol) or Date (it stars Yuto too. It made me laugh, scratching my head, cover my eyes in embarrassment, and you probably cry on the last ep. man, I love the scriptwriter).
There's a lot more actually. I used to switch between dark genre to light to wacky-with-no-content-at-all which help me to stick in jdorama for long time.

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I actually go to J-dramas for my fix of wacky fun (that's still coherent--I find that they are better at wrapping up comedies) while I find that K-dramas on the teary end of the scale are better.

Anyway, I also have a good feeling about this. Japanese production crews do very well with slice of life dramas. More J-pop idols also seem to do better than their K-pop counterparts, so hopefully Yuto can pull this off!!

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haha, jdorama has this cry fest sometimes
@yukari Love shuffle make me cry on sad and happines too

There's many funny drama like
- Tamiou about prime minister swab body with his shy son,
- Fuben na Benriya, when a guy trapped in snowy place and all the ridiculous thing's happpen.
- Himitsu no Hanazono, a new editor take care of popular mangaka and discover their secret,
- Date about a girl who is so reserved and man that is a bit hikkikomori (like stay home and not working) relationship,

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I remember thinking even at the time that Misaeng actually felt closer to jdramas than kdramas in terms of the subject and its treatment, so I think the office life aspect certainly has the potential to work beautifully in a Japanese context.

The real trick, though, is in casting the actors - the cast of Misaeng was perfect in every way, and the Japanese casting directors need to match that with the best they've got. (and that means getting the right people to play Jang Geu-rae and Chief Oh!)

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I'm not impressed by Nakajima, there are so many young actors on the scene right now that are better then him.
For Example Sometani Shouta, Ikematsu Sousuke, Kamiki Ryunosuke or Suda Masaki.
But the power of JE is still huge in the J-ent circles and I'm very curious what happens inside the company once the big boss Kitagawa kicks the bucket. But let's hope the supporting cast is good and that no akb/ske etc girls are in it.

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Johnny is like a figurehead/brand these days. it's his sister and niece who are actually managing the company now. and one can tell that JE might (won't) last for much longer, if Mary and Julie won't try something more innovative. Arashi's still so big, so they're still okay.

and just to reiterate, Nakajima did quite well for Pink&Gray. I thought he carried the movie, instead of Masaki. (Masaki's amazing, but I find him going for roles with similar vibes. Same with Sometani.)

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Is this the first time Japan has done a remake of a Korean drama? Or an adaption of a Korean comic/webtoon?

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nope, there's couple of J-remake of Kdrama or movie, like Hotelier and My Sassy Girl (kmovie to jdorama)

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He was also in "Hanzawa Naoki" and that's the Jdrama most similar to "Misaeng" right now.

I think a Japanese remake is a perfect idea. Right off the bat "Misaeng" looked more like a Jdrama than a Kdrama.

Let's hope the rest of the cast is good.

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misaeng is slice-of-life that it seems like it is a jdrama but somehow it's also different? jdamas, even those with tearjerking endings like the the lead dying, still makes the audience feel cathartic? like it just reinforces that LIFE happens, but what is important is that you just LIVE it. you cry and feel sad, but it empowers you at the same time? can't explain it.

i follow certain japanese actors/actresses so i get to watch dramas i normally wouldn't - but i'd still enjoy it. and other times, i'd read a synopsis that's interesting and without knowing any of the cast - but i'd watch and enjoy it. or sometimes, i'll check out the classics or those with high reviews...

the last kdrama i watched is page turner...

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Got to admit, I'm a little disappointed that they are losing the title for this remake. Incomplete Life was such a perfect title in so many ways. (Of course, I don't think they should keep the Korean term Miseang, just that they should use the Japanese go term for incomplete life, whatever that is.)

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I have watched the Korean version and i must say that it holds now as my top most favorite Kdrama at the moment. But then I again i rarely watch or even finish watching one season of Korean drama for that matter, usually I will check one episode of most kdramas and see how far it goes not to bore me. And usually each kdramas i watched failed me. That is why I am so happy to have given Misaeng a try in watching it, and i manage to keep me up watching until the very end.
And i must agree wth some comments here that Misaeng has a jdrama-ish vibe to it, maybe that is why it keeps me interested. Like there aren't unnecessary moments just to prolong the episode.
So I am really glad to have heard that there is a remake for this drama, and Japan will do it. And now I have watched this drama, and I think is as good as the korean one. I dont want to compare because Misaeng already have that very special spot in my heart. But then, this jdrama is also good and the cast also is doing well with their characters. There is a bit difference but its still interesting. And also with the adaptation, i think because i am more inclined to watch jdrama that i more used to it, i have understand it more and had felt it more.

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