THE CASTING OF THE ACTORS
LISA ODA plays Hiromi in a range of emotions that swings from despair to hope. She made her debut in director Keishi Ohtomo’s 2016 film “Himitsu: The Top Secret.” Her command of fluent English and her resilience, as Hiromi, in the face of a life-threatening challenge mark Lisa Oda as a budding star of both Japanese and international cinema.
SHINNOSUKE MITSUSHIMA, who was born and raised in Okinawa, plays the deserter Takayasu with amazing authenticity and remarkable spiritual strength. Together with BRANDON McCLELLAND, an upcoming star from Australia, he creates a bond of compassion that is both profound and true.
TAKAHIRO MIURA appears as Takayasu’s older brother, a soldier who has been totally indoctrinated into the military mindset and who forces the three people in the cave to make a life-changing decision. RIHO YOSHIOKA, as the present-day student, uncovers the secret of Hiromi’s diary and learns the kind of lesson that only real history can teach.
These five young actors are joined by veterans of Japanese cinema.
SHINOBU TERAJIMA is Mrs. Gima, a woman who has lost her daughter in the fires caused by American bombing. Her retelling of that personal tragedy may well become one of the most heart-rending and memorable scenes in contemporary Japanese cinema. MAKIKO WATANABE is Yoshigami, the nosy islander who offers solace to Hiromi when she needs it most.
RENJI ISHIBASHI puts in a performance as Prof. Shiroma that is as moving as it is comical. MAKO MIDORI, Hiromi in old age, reveals the truth of what happened in the cave in 1945 and the beauty of the star sand that she collected as a young girl.
Nine brilliant actors spanning three generations in fiction and real life bring the dark story of the past into today’s bright light.