‘Last Samurai Standing’ Japanese Battle-Royale Drama on Netflix: What We Know So Far

Junichi Okada will star, produce, and choreograph the action of Netflix's new battle royale series Last Samurai Standing.

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Picture: Junichi Okada (left) and a cover of Shogo Imamura’s manga Ikusagami

Netflix is developing an exciting new battle royale drama from Japan, Last Samurai Standing. Actor Junichi Okada will produce and choreograph the show. Here’s what we know so far about it.

Last Samurai Standing is an upcoming Japanese Netflix Original action-drama series directed by Michihito Fujii. It is an adaptation of Shogo Imamura’s manga Ikusagami. Junichi Okada serves as a producer, action choreographer, and lead actor in the series.

Author Shogo Imamura shared his delight with Netflix at Junichi Okada’s casting in the lead role of Shujiro;

“I wrote ‘Ikusagami’ with the intention of making a historical novel that could be enjoyed worldwide. When Netflix approached me, I was overjoyed. And having Junichi Okada in the lead role was a dream come true, as I had envisioned him as Shujiro while writing.”

What is the plot of Last Samurai Standing?

Netflix has provided the synopsis for the drama;

“Set in the late 19th century during the Meiji period, Last Samurai Standing takes place at the Tenryuji Temple in Kyoto. Come nightfall, 292 skilled warriors gather, lured by the promise of a grand prize of 100 billion yen. Among them is our protagonist, Shujiro Saga (Junichi Okada), who enters this dangerous game with one goal: to save his ailing wife and child.”

Who is in the cast for Last Samurai Standing?

So far, only one cast member, lead actor Junichi Okada, has been revealed. Some Netflix subscribers would be familiar with Junichi Okada if they streamed the Japanese crime-thriller Hard Days. Others may recognize him for his voice work on animated titles Tales from Earthsea and From Up on Poppy Hill. Outside of Netflix, the actor has starred in several historical dramas.

Junichi Okada shared his excitement with Netflix about the project;

“When Netflix executive producer Mr. Takahashi reached out to me, I was still acting in historical dramas. Back then, I was already thinking of ways to make this genre a hit, not just in Japan, but all over the world. I saw their potential for action, drama, social commentary, and entertainment, but I knew they could be taken further. That’s when I came across Imamura’s manga. It was written in a way that modern audiences could enjoy, and I was excited about the idea of adapting it”

Last Samurai Standing Junichi Okada Netflix

Picture: Junichi Okada (left) with Aoi Miyazaki (right) in Tenchi: The Samurai Astronomer

We expect to learn more about the cast soon.

What is the production status of Last Samurai Standing?

Official Production Status: In-production (Last Updated: 23/04/2024)

Netflix has yet to reveal precisely where the Last Samurai Standing is currently in production. We know production is ongoing, as scripts are written, and 300 actors have reportedly been cast.

Director Michihito Fujii had the following to say;

“We’re creating a unique world with an ensemble cast. We feel a responsibility to deliver something unprecedented. I’m glad for this opportunity to take an amazing story, cast and visuals, and create a work for Japan and the world to see.”

We’re assuming we’ll be learning when the filming dates are soon.

When will Last Samurai Standing be on Netflix?

We expect the series to arrive in 2025, most likely in the year’s second half.

Are you looking forward to watching Last Samurai Standing on Netflix? Let us know in the comments below!

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Jacob joined What's on Netflix in 2018 as a fulltime writer having worked in numerous other industries until that point. Jacob covers all things Netflix whether that's TV or movies but specializes in covering new anime and K-dramas. Resides in Norwich in the United Kingdom.