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Toei, the company that makes the popular Kamen Rider and Super Sentai series, has revealed the start of a new project, “Toei Hero Next,” using the actors that have starred in those series.  PIECE ~Kioku no Kakera~ (directed by Ten Shimoyama) is the first film and features Shu Watanabe (20) and Ryosuke Miura (25) who starred in the popular Kamen Rider OOO.  From now on, the series will feature young actors who have graduated from Toei’s tokusatsu series.

“Toei Hero Next” is a project to show a new side of the young actors.  The first actors selected were the stars of Kamen Rider OOO.  The main character, Eiji Hino (Watanabe), transformed into Kamen Rider OOO, and his partner, Ankh (Miura), was a monster.  In the show the two of them presented themselves as superb partners.  In PIECE, Watanabe plays a free reporter and Miura a cameraman with five personalities.  They pursue a mystery in this science-fiction suspense story.

Without using a transformation belt or finishing off enemies, this is a showdown of acting abilities.  Watanabe said, “I’m good friends with Ryosuke and see him all the time in my off-time, but this time we’re rivals.  It’s a different kind of feeling.”  “He [Watanabe] is only 20, but he’s growing up,” Miura responded with a large smile.

Toei television producer and head of the Toei Tokyo filming studio Shinichiro Shirakura explained, “When their show is over, it’s absurd to just say ‘Okay, bye.’  If only there were a way to show another side of those hero show actors….”  From now on, the series will use not only actors from recent Kamen Rider and Super Sentai series, but also those from the past.

Shimoyama, known for directing the films Innocent World and Shinobi as well as the Kamen Rider OOO related music videos “Anything Goes!” and “Te o Tsunagou ~Matsuken x Kamen Rider Samba,” commented, “I want to film the side of those two that they only show in private.”  PIECE begins DVD rental on November 9 and goes on sale November 21.

Source: Sports Houchi

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