Idol group Hinatazaka46’s new movie “Hope and Despair” documents the members as they try to keep their dreams alive through the dark days of COVID-19.

Takeshi Ishii, JAPAN Forward

A documentary movie about Hinatazaka46 opened in theaters nationwide on July 8th. It was supposed to capture the quick rise to fame of the popular idol group, but COVID-19 started its rampage right after filming began.

It then became a documentary about how the girls overcame the trials brought upon them by the pandemic. Not only fans, but also anyone who has suffered the pandemic will be able to sympathize with them.

Yusuke Takenaka (45) directed the movie. He is a producer who has worked on many popular shows aired on the Tokyo-based TV channel TBS, such as Akko ni omakase! and Kagayaku! Japan Record Awards.

Director Yusuke Takenaka filmed everything by himself with a video camera for household use. (Photo by Takeshi Ishii) | Courtesy of © JAPAN Forward

When he worked on an AKB48 TV show about ten years ago, he was charmed by the sight of those teenage girls banding together to chase their dreams with feelings as pure as those on high school baseball teams. He then started to produce idol-related documentaries on late-night TV.


By - grape Japan editorial staff.