Netflix is doing a live-action adaptation of the manga Kentarō Hiyama’s First Pregnancy (known as Hiyama Kentarō no Ninshin in Japanese), which they’ve titled as He’s Expecting. He’s Expecting is being released globally on April 21, and in the meantime an English-subtitled trailer has dropped for fans to check out.
In the story, the script is flipped and biological males are able to get pregnant, and that’s what happens to the lead. But as you can see from the trailer, even if men can get pregnant now, Kentarō still faces prejudice. On top of that, he has to deal with all the normal difficulties of pregnancy. In the trailer you can see people talking about parenthood, pregnancy, and there’s one scene where Kentarō appears to be considering getting an abortion.
Takumi Saitō plays Kentarō Hiyama, and Juri Ueno plays his partner Aki Seto. Other cast members are Mariko Tsutsui, Lily Franky, Ryō Iwamatsu, Kazuya Takahashi, Shōhei Ueno, Maho Yamada, Gaku Hosokawa, Kō Maehara, Yūsaku Mori, Ai Yamamoto, Shima Ise, Yukiko Shinohara, Atsushi Hashimoto, Yuriko Ono, Mai Kiryū, Shigeru Saiki, and Toshie Negishi.
The original manga, created by Eri Sakai, was first published in Kodansha’s Be Love ten years ago. It was later published in Japan as a single volume by Kodansha. It has not been licensed in America.
The series is being directed by Yūko Hakota as well as Takeo Kikuchi, who did art cooperation on episodes of the live-action Ikebukuro West Gate Park. The task of writing the scripts goes to Yoshitatsu Yamada, Yukiko Sode, and Chihiro Amano. AOI Pro., which produced the live-action movies Koi wa Ameagari no You ni and Teiichi no Kuni, is also collaborating.
Is this a live-action series you’d be interested in checking out? Would you be interested in the original manga if it were licensed?
Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin. She is also the author of its upcoming sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.