Japanese major Shochiku isproducing the next film from Yoji Yamada following his acclaimedsamurai trilogy - a World War II drama with the working title Kabei, set to star veteran actressSayuri Yoshinaga.

Based on the non-fictionnovel Chichi Eno Requiem, written byTeruyo Nogami, the film is set in 1940s Tokyo and follows a mother who struggles to raise her twodaughters during war-time after her husband is imprisoned.

"You can say this film is ahalf of a period drama, but in a sense, this is more difficult than a periodfilm as [it's also] a historical investigation," said Yamada. "Therefore, thestaff have been studying hard."

Principal photography isscheduled to start on Jan 20, 2007 and Shochiku is planning a 2008 release.

The film marks the firsttime in 32 years that Yamada and award-winning actress Yoshinaga have workedtogether. Yoshinaga previously made two installments in the legendary director'slong-running Tora-san series - Tora-san's Dear Old Home and Tora-san's Lovesick.

The third installment ofYamada's samurai trilogy Bushi No Ichibun,starring Japanese pop star Kimura Takuya (who also appeared in Wong Kar-wai's 2046) is set to open in Japan in December.