The screening event for the first six episodes of new NHK morning drama "Hiyokko" was held at NHK's HQ in Shibuya, Tokyo, on 15 March which was attended by the lead actress Arimura Kasumi. The drama begins its run from 3 April at 8am from Mondays to Saturdays.
"Hiyokko" is written by Okada Yoshikazu which is set in 1964 i.e. the year when the Tokyo Olympics was held. Arimura plays the role of a young woman named Yatabe Mineko from Ibaraki Prefecture whose father disappears after she graduates from high school. In a bid to find him, Mineko joins the mass wave of youngsters leaving their hometowns to work in Tokyo. While working at a factory, Mineko overcomes various difficulties and grows as an adult. The drama will feature Mineko's life from the age of 18 to 30 so there will be no child actor playing her role thus Arimura will appear from the first episode.
Arimura revealed that there is a difference in her images during the Ibaraki arc and Tokyo arc of the story as she actually put on 5kg and was darker than now because she was constantly exposed to the sun. However, in the Tokyo arc, her clothes and hairstyle were changed so as to shed the country bumpkin image she had in the Ibaraki arc. As Mineko comes from a family growing rice, Arimura wanted to show Mineko's healthy and tanned image back home. Thus, she deliberately ate rice for her three meals even though she actually hardly eats carbohydrates and she wasn't even asked to put on weight specifically for her role. However, it was tough for her to lose the extra pounds in time. More than one-third of the 156 episodes have been completed and filming for the Tokyo arc began on the same day of the screening event.
Sources: Sponichi / Oricon