LineUp
HOME
LINE UP
COMPANY
COMPANY
CONTACT US
WILL BE THERE FOR YOU
INTRODUCTION STORY PRODUCTION NOTE
PROFILES CAST STAFF

Clad in camouflage uniform, helmet and all and with a 20-kilo pack on her back and a rifle in her arm, Sarasa Anzai, a 20-year old woman with little experience in life, marches on with her section mates. Helicopters fly above and dozens of tanks roar by. Sarasa has enlisted as a member of the Ground Self-Defense Force (GSDF) Womens Corps. The SDFs Women Corps was established in 1968, and since then becoming a member of this Womens Corps has been listed as one of the most popular job opportunities for Japanese women. Needless to say, bread and board are guaranteed, and so are clothes to wear. In addition, the SDF supply opportunities to acquire various licenses and qualifications. And lastly, after a two-year term with the SDF, the members become eligible for retirement allowance. As of March 1999, out of 146,000 members of the Ground SDF, about 5,000 are women.

Based on a hit comic book series, written by Ikuko Kujirai, "MAMOTTE AGETAI" (literally: I Want to Protect You) features a young woman, who joins the SDF for no particular reason other than escaping from the misery of a broken romance. Leading a casual carefree life, the heroine is not prepared for a disciplined life. And, naturally, the boot camp is too much for her. Yet, she comes to realize that it may be a time in her life to stick to something to the end. The heroine also learns that some things must be accomplished as a team. Thus, WILL BE THERE FOR YOU is a delightful comedy about maturity, friendship, teamwork and self-respect.

Directing the film is Yoshinari Nishikori, a young director with a clear vision for entertainment-oriented films. For WILL BE THERE FOR YOU Nishikori not only adapted the story to the screen, but also undertook the role of the producer, acquiring cooperation for the Defense Agency and the various sectors of the Ground SDF.

Playing the role of Sarasa Anzai, the heroine, is Miho Kanno, one of the most popular and promising young actresses in Japan. In the supporting roles are Ayako Sugiyama as her section chief. Debuting on the screen is Yuko Miyamura who is best known as the voice actress for the mega-hit animation EVANGELLION series. Also to mention is Masato Furuoya (UNIVERSAL LAWS), who makes his appearance in the cameo role as the section chief's hero.

story

Sarasa Anzai (Miho Kanno) is a 20-year old young woman, a regular girl next door with no special talents or virtues. Hard hit by her boyfriend cheating on her, she ends up enlisting in the Self-Defense Force. Contrary to the smooth publicity pitch by the recruiting officer, life in the military is far from what she imagined. Along with a military freak, an ex-biker, a former professional wrestler and other oddballs, she is assigned to 3rd Section, where all the drop-outs and oddballs have been rounded up.

From day one, Sarasa's disappointments begin. The uniform issued is not at all fashionable, and the language used is totally Greek to her. In addition are the grilling drills. To make things worse, there is a rumor that their section chief, Ayame Chubachi (Ayako Sugiyama), nicknamed the Devil, drove one of her new recuits to death. Crawling in mud, climbing walls, and running fully equipped, the only words Sarasa is able to utter are: I've had enough! But as time passes, a change takes place in her mind. "There must be at least one thing I can accomplish to the end."Thus, fighting the odds, she and the other members of 3rd Section somehow reach their final training session at the training area at the foot of Mt. Fuji.

With only a compass and a map, the group, competing with other groups, must take part in a contest to reach the designated spot to get the flag. As they march through the wilderness, heavy clouds cover the sky, and rain ruthlessly falls on them. Their compass is broken and so is their radio. They are lost! The members of the group are about to go berserk, but then come face to face with an unexpected turn of events.

Since the story takes place mainly in the SDF facilities, the film was made with full cooperation of the Defense Agency and the SDF. The scenes of the boot camp were shot inside Camp Asaka in Saitama Prefecture, and the final compass march was filmed on the training area at the foot of Mt. Fuji. The tanks, helicopters, jeeps and other vehicles are all real, and so are the weapons. Furthermore, it is perhaps the first time the real facilities were filmed, and we are able to see with our own eyes how life is like in the SDF.

PROFILES

Yoshinari Nishikori (Director/Screenplay)
Born in Tottori Prefecture in 1962, Nishikori began directing stage production or worked as an assistant director for television programs while still a student of Toho Gakuen, where he majored in broadcasting. After that he has directed countless music video clips for pop idols, and in 1996 debuted as a theatrical release director with BUGS. WILL BE THERE FOR YOU is a project he had warmed up for some years, and has finally been realized. Contrary to the trend in which many young directors aim for art-oriented films, Nishikori has his mind set on pure entertainment.

Miho Kanno (as Sarasa Anzai)
A popular face on television, screen and stage, 1977-born Kanno, debuted as actress in 1993 with the television drama series TWINS KYOSHI. Since then, she has starred in countless television drama series, and has earned the position as one of the most popular young actresses in Japan. Her popularity owes not only to her pretty face and performance, but to her courage in taking on diverse roles. WILL BE THERE FOR YOU has definitely expanded her repertoire.

CAST

  • Sarasa Anzai:Miho KANNO
  • Sgt. Chubachi:Ayako SUGIYAMA
  • Pvt. Shimauma:Yuko MIYAMURA
  • Pvt. Ushio:Minami SHIRAKAWA
  • Major Tachibana:Masato FURUOYA

STAFF

  • Director & Screenplay:Yoshinari NISHIKORI
  • Based on the comic book by Ikuko KUJIRAI
  • Music by Toshiyuki HONDA
  • Director of photography:Akiko ASHIZAWA
  • Lighting:Sousuke YOSHIKADO
(C)PONYCANYON