japanese miniseries tells story of the japanese american experience

This is a really interesting Seattle Times article on the Japanese TV drama 99 Years of Love: Japanese Americans. Filmed largely in Seattle, the miniseries tells the story of a fictional Japanese American family over the course of the past century: Seattle, state play key role in Japanese TV miniseries.

The 10-hour drama was a huge hit in Japan, attracting over 20 million viewers -- nearly a fifth of the population -- when it aired on the Tokyo Broadcasting System over five nights back in November. Now it's making its way over to the U.S. for English-subtitled screenings:
The story follows generations of the fictional Hiramatsu family, immigrants who flee poverty in Japan and make a living as farmers in Washington state. They face discrimination and see their lives torn apart by World War II.

Their first U.S.-born child, named Ichiro, is incarcerated with other people of Japanese descent in detention camps after the 1941 bombing of Pearl Harbor. He later fights as a U.S. soldier in the 442nd Infantry Regiment, the segregated, all Japanese-American unit that became the most highly decorated in Army history.

The show's popularity surprised even its producer, Tatsuya Juni, TBS vice president in charge of TV programming. Juni, who visited Seattle for the first U.S. showing, said he didn't expect a large audience to embrace such a difficult, serious topic.
I think this is pretty fascinating. I'm really curious to see what the Japanese-produced dramatized take on the twentieth-century Japanese American experience looks like. TBS is assessing whether there's a U.S. market for the miniseries on TV or DVD. If you can read Japanese, check out official 99 Years website here.

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