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Epic Japanese Series ‘A True Novel’ Set at Matt Brodlie and Jonathan Kier’s Upgrade, Shochiku (EXCLUSIVE)

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Patrick Frater Asia Bureau ChiefUpgrade Productions, the production company launched last year by Matt Brodlie and Jonathan Kier, is working on an epic Japanese-language TV series.The company has teamed with venerable Japanese studio Shochiku to produce “A True Novel” as an eight-part adaptation of Mizumura Minae’s 2003 Yomiuri Prize-winning novel.

Inspired by Emily Brontë’s “Wuthering Heights,” the sweeping family narrative is set in the decades after World War II in Japan and the U.S.The series, adapted by screenwriter Sakaguchi Riko (“The Tale of the Princess Kaguya,” “Mary and the Witch’s Flower”) will bring to life a love story spanning three generations and told by different characters. “The extraordinary team at Shochiku, one of Japan’s most innovative and successful studios, is the perfect partner on this show. ‘A True Novel’ is a beautiful story with universal themes.

And to be collaborating with the incredibly talented Sakaguchi Riko is a dream come true. It’s an epic story which is appealing to global audiences,” said Upgrade co-presidents Brodlie and Kier.The series will be produced by Akita Shuhei from Shochiku and Brodlie and Kier.

Upgrade Productions will be credited as executive producer.“We are excited to be adapting this powerful story, based on a prestigious and popular Japanese novel.

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