The Fuji TV network, the makers of last year's number one hit Bayside Shakedown 2, have announced the production of a submarine thriller set in the closing days of World War II.

Titled Lorelei, the film will star Koji Yakusho (Eureka, Warm Water Under A Red Bridge) and 16-year-old newcomer Yu Kashi, who shot to fame last year in the hit TV series Waterboys. The director is Shinji Higuchi, an effects specialist responsible for three Gamera instalments and the 2001 Godzilla, Mothra And King Gidorah: Giant Monsters All-Out Attack.

Budgeted at $11.4m (Y1.2bn), the film will feature Yakusho as a submarine commander engaged in a deadly struggle to sink a US ship carrying an atomic bomb. Kashi will play a half-Japanese, half-German girl who holds the key to victory. Production is set to start in March, with Toho scheduled to distribute.