From 10.00 p.m., Tuesdays, 9 October 2018
Suenaga Hijiri has been posted to Koboshi Junior High School in a remote countryside town after graduating from university. It has been her childhood dream to become a teacher and she is in high spirits. However, she is mocked by the third-year students of Class 3/1 as soon as she is made their form teacher and gets a warning from vice principal Shioya Michiyo about her attire. Hijiri is engaged to Kawai Shotaro whom she has been dating since university. An an elite trading company employee, Shotaro has been posted to Osaka for work and they are in a long-distance relationship. Hijiri thought nothing could come in between them. But she finds it difficult to communicate with Shotaro for days on end because he is swamped with work. Although she lacks confidence as a teacher and feels insecure about her relationship with Shotaro, she struggles to connect with her students. Then she meets a student called Kuroiwa Akira who falls in love with her at first sight and directly expresses his romantic interest. Akira is just 14 years old, but there is something mysterious and charming about him. Hijiri knows in her mind that she should never develop feelings for Akira because she is a teacher and has a fiance. But his love for her is so pure and honest, that she finds herself slowly becoming infatuated by him.
Arimura Kasumi as Suenaga Hijiri
The form teacher of Class 3/1 at Koboshi Junior High School in the remote countryside. She teaches Japanese language. Although she is a dependable person, the students at the school make fun of her because she keeps going around in circles contrary to her earnestness. She is in a long-distance relationship with her fiancee Kawai Shotaro whom she met through a university club. When she is with the kind and positive Shotaro, she can also be positive. But on the other hand, she feels a sense of inferiority that she is not quite an adult. Then she meets a student Kuroiwa Akira. His eyes which seem to see through everything and his awkward but pure heart sways her.
Okada Kenshi as Kuroiwa Akira
A third-year student in Suenaga Hijiri’s class. He has a sensitive and introverted personality. A youth who does not know much of the world and is unfamiliar with trends. He is captivated by Hijiri for some reason and gradually realises that she gets to him. He knows this is love and is unable to keep himself in check. Despite not knowing what to do, he expresses his feelings to her point blank. This straightforward, fearless approach because of his youth, stirs Hijiri’s heart. Although he has a good relationship with his mother Aiko who raised him by herself, his first love triggers changes … …
Machida Keita as Kawai Shotaro
Suenaga Hijiri’s fiance. An elite employee who works for a trading company. He is cheerful and has a positive attitude. He constantly wins in the rat race and the company has expectations of him. He has been Hijiri’s boyfriend since university and they are now in a long-distance relationship because he has been posted to Osaka. He succeeded in proposing to Hijiri and worries that she has no time because she is busy. He shows his concern with humour at times. He is the total opposite of Kuroiwa Akira. As he is the person who understands Hijiri the most, he also is the biggest obstacle to the romance between Hijiri and Akira.
Natsuki Mari as Shioya Michiyo
The vice principal of Koboshi Junior High School. She is like the head of the school whom no one defies, and she has more influence and decision-making power than the principal. Although she is disliked by the students and teachers, she has great credibility with the parents. She loves the school more than anyone else and because of that she is harsh on both the students and teachers. She closely monitors the conduct and attire of rookie teacher Suenaga Hijiri as soon as she is posted to the school, and guides her. She has battled hardships as a woman and does not allow any compromise using the words “Because I’m female” as an excuse.
Tomochika as Niwa Chizuru
Suenaga Hijiri’s senior. An elementary school teacher. She was an instructor at Hijiri’s teaching practice, and listens to Hijiri’s personal and professional problems even now. She always helps Hijiri with sound advice and is like a generous, dependable older sister. She is the only person that Hijiri can open her heart to. She gives her pep talks as a teacher and also understands her as a woman.
Yoshida Yo as Haraguchi Ritsu
Kawai Shotaro’s senior at the trading company. A career woman who came back from abroad, her policy is not to attend meaningless drinking sessions and to use that free time to do work. She is a bisexual who also has romances with women. She has her own unique view of life and set of values that are not affected by people, and never misses her quarry in both work and romance. Each time Shotaro consults her about his relationship with his fiancee Suenaga Hijiri, her incisive words alternate between making him nervous and helping him out. She understands Shotaro well and has an influence on him both in a good way and a bad way.
Natsukawa Yui as Kuroiwa Aiko
Kuroiwa Akira’s mother. The CEO of a company that imports and sells general Asian merchandise and a single mother who brought up her son on her own. She divorced Akira’s father when he was a child. She is capable of doing anything in order to protect her company and her son. Although she has raised Akira with a laissez-faire approach, she has difficulty handling him now that he has entered the rebellious phase. She is quick to pick up on his feelings for Suenaga Hijiri. At first, she is unable to believe it. However, Akira’s unexpected actions give her a sense of crisis and becomes wary of Hijiri.
Kaneko Arisa (Final Cut, Watashi Kekkon Dekinai Janakute Shinain desu)
Chugaku Seinikki by Kawakami Junko
Click here for photos from the press conference.