Japan’s public broadcaster NHK has acquired the live-action drama series 'First Day' (4 x 30 min) from the ACTF. The award-winning series stars young transgender actor Evie Macdonald as Hannah Bradford, who is about to start her first year of high school. As a transgender girl, Hannah not only has to navigate the challenges that come with starting a new school but find the courage to live as her most authentic self. In 2019, NHK acquired the original short film
'First Day' on which the series is based. 'First Day' is scheduled to air on NHK in June 2021 as part of their “Inclusion Week”. Since its launch, 'First Day' has been acquired by several broadcasters across the globe including US SVOD streamer Hulu, BBC’s children’s channel CBBC (UK), RTE (Ireland), YLE (Finland), NRK (Norway), SVT (Sweden) and MOMOKids (Taiwan). And has won several awards including the 2020 Kidscreen Awards, Chicago International Children’s Film Festival and Rose d’Or Festival.
NHK’s Takako Hayashi, Senior Producer at Programming Department, said: "We are very pleased and proud to be able to deliver the universal message that this drama series entails, to our teenage viewers in Japan. We are confident that the young viewers who watch this program will immediately feel that this is their story… I strongly believe that this program will definitely be an important first step forward for Japan to become a country where every one of us has our own place to live.”
The ACTF’s CEO, Jenny Buckland said “It’s a very special day when NHK acquires one of our shows, but the values that underpin ‘First Day’ – of love, courage and inclusion – are proving to be universal. We’re very proud that children in Japan will be able to see this story, too.”
'First Day' was created by writer/director Julie Kalceff and produced by Kirsty Stark and Kate Croser for Epic Films in association with Kojo Entertainment, for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, with investment from Screen Australia, in association with the South Australian Film Corporation and the Australian Children’s Television Foundation. 'First Day' is distributed internationally by the ACTF.
It’s a very special day when NHK acquires one of our shows, but the values that underpin ‘First Day’ – of love, courage and inclusion – are proving to be universal”