It was announced on January 28th that Massu will be starring in a new drama, “Rental Nan mo Shinai Hito (Rent-a-Person Who Does Nothing)” which starts in April airing on TV Tokyo. This marks Massu’s first time appearing in a TV Tokyo drama and his first lead role. It’s an interesting and new human drama, where the main character warms the hearts of those he meets.
A twitter user called “Rental Nan mo Shinai Hito” suddenly appeared on Twitter in June of 2018, with the tweet:
“I’m starting a ‘Rent-a-Person Who Does Nothing’ service. If you need someone to sit with you at a restaurant, or another player for a game, or to go flower watching with- any situation that simply requires the presence of a single person, please make use of this service. All I require is that you cover the cost of travel from Kokubunji station and any food and drink (if there are any). I cannot fulfill anything beyond very simple requests.”
It quickly gained 250,000 followers in half a year, and the story has been adapted on TV and the radio as well as into a manga and novel.
Massu’s comments about the drama:
“When I first heard about the role, it was when I was watching ‘Shiyakusho’ (Note: Shiyakusho was the first drama for TV Tokyo’s new Dramaholic! timeslot, and starred TOKIO’s Matsuoka), and I was so happy that I was going to play the lead role of a drama in the same ‘Dramaholic!’ slot that I went into a slight panic (laugh). I often just sit, space out, and do nothing in the dressing room… The other NEWS members often point that out, so I have to admit it’s a very fitting role, and I was happy (to be offered the role).” In regards to how he’ll prepare for the role he said, “I think it might be good to do nothing (lol). Nowadays there are many people who push themselves too hard, I would like for this to be a story that can fill the emptiness in the hearts of those who watch, an emptiness that they didn’t even realize was there. ”
Morimoto Shoji, the man behind the Rental Nan mo Shinai Hito twitter account, was asked about his impression of Massu, and said that as a part of one of the requests he took- to allow the person to talk about what they like- he was shown around 7 hours of NEWS concert footage. After watching the concerts he was asked if he had a favorite and he recalls answering, “Massu”. He said that Massu’s ability to deliver an amazing performance effortlessly left an impression on him, and that he’s looking forward to seeing how Massu acts out doing nothing.
The drama will air starting on TV Tokyo in April every week on Wednesdays at 12:12 am. The drama’s official site is already up, so check it out for the latest information on the drama! The Rental Nan mo Shinai hito twitter account can also be found here.
On the same day, it was announced that Shige’s essay series, “Dekiru koto nara steed de”, that used to appear in “Shosetsu Tripper” will be published as an essay collection on March 6th. On top of the essays that have already been published, one new essay, three short stories, as well as photos taken by Shige will be included in this essay collection.
“I’ve had the opportunity to publish a few of my novels so far, but it’s the first time my essays are being published so I’m excited. The essays included in this collection are centered around the theme, ‘journey’. There are various journeys involved, but to sum them up in a phrase, it would be ‘a journey of contemplation’. In the four years (of this essay series), I’ve written down my thoughts in ways that were sometimes free, and sometimes raw. So while there’s this embarrassment of revealing myself to the world, I hope those who read this collection would feel light as if they’d flown somewhere faraway, or joy as they step back onto the earth. To smell the air and hear the wind… these are what readers might experience as they read the essays. It’d be great if everyone could read these as if they’re embarking on a trip.”