SMAP’s Nakai will play Rain Man detective
“ATARU” is TV company TBS’ new kind of mystery drama, which will begin in Japan this April. Nakai will play lead character Ataru, a savant with a mysterious past, whose unique abilities allow him to solve seemingly impossible cases. Savant syndrome is a rare condition in people with disorders such as autism who also show incredible talent something else. Hollywood actor Dustin Hoffman made savant syndrome famous in the 1988 film “Rain Man” when he played an autistic savant with exceptional skills in memory and mathematics.
It has been reported Nakai admitted it would not be easy playing his character, but he had already started preparing and is now looking through real-life accounts of savants.
“[The script] looks really good. It’s like a documentary drama. I hope I can show a new side of Masahiro Nakai. I watched Rain Man when it came out, but I want to watch it again to study Dustin Hoffman’s acting.”
Nakai’s last drama was 2009’s “婚カツ！（Kon-katsu!）”, but that was with TV company Fuji TV. In fact, Nakai’s last drama with TBS was in 2004, when he starred in”砂の器 (Suna no Utsuwa)”.
“I’d always wondered what TBS had been doing these last 8 years,” he said.
Filming for “ATARU” starts in March.