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1 Litre of Tears (1リットルの涙, "1 Litre no Namida"; also called A Diary with Tears or A Diary of Tears) is a 2005 Japanese television drama for Fuji Television, based on a true story of a 15-year-old girl named Aya Kitō, who suffered from degenerative disease and died at the age of 25.

The script is based on Aya's diary that she kept writing until she could no longer hold a pen. The diary is later entitled, One Litre of Tears, which has sold over 1.1 million copies in Japan.


15-year-old Ikeuchi Aya is an ordinary girl, the daughter of a family who works at a tofu shop, and a soon-to-be high schooler. However, odd things have been happening to Aya lately. She has been falling down often and walks strange. Her mother, Shioka, takes Aya to see the doctor, and he informs Shioka that Aya has spinocerebellar degeneration - a terrible disease where the cerebellum of the brain gradually deteriorates to the point where the victim cannot walk, speak, write, or eat.[1]


  • Sawajiri Erika as Ikeuchi Aya
  • Nishikido Ryo as Aso Haruto

  • Yakushimaru Hiroko as Ikeuchi Shioka, Aya's mother
  • Jinnai Takanori as Ikeuchi Mizuo, Aya's father
  • Narumi Riko as Ikeuchi Ako, Aya's sister
  • Sanada Yuma as Ikeuchi Hiroki, Aya's brother
  • Miyoshi Ai as Ikeuchi Rika, Aya's sister
  • Totsugi Shigeyuki as Nishino, Aya's homeroom teacher
  • Saori as Sugiura Mari, one of Aya's best friends
  • Matsumoto Kana as Matsumura Saki
  • Mizutani Momosuke as Onda Kohei
  • Hashizume Ryo as Nakahara Keita
  • Aoi as Tomita Keiko, a girl who likes Haruto and is jealous of Aya
  • Kawahara Makoto as Ohashi Miho
  • Hoshino Natsuko as Honda Kaori
  • Matsuyama Kenichi as Kawamoto Yuji, Aya's first love interest and the leader of the basketball club
  • Endo Yuya as Takeda Makoto, Yuji's friend in the basketball club
  • Katsuno Hiroshi as Aso Yoshifumi, Haruto's father
  • Umoto Yuki as Aso Sawako, Haruto's mother
  • Sato Yuki as Aso Keisuke, Haruto's brother
  • Fujiki Naohito as Mizuno Hiroshi, Aya's doctor
  • Yajima Kenichi as Okazaki Makoto
  • Kobayashi Masahiro as Tanabe Shintaro
  • Moriyama Shuichiro as Miyashita Shintaro
  • Enjoji Aya as Kawakami Sakura
  • Hamaoka Maya as Fujimura Madoka
  • Tonesaku Toshihide as Takano Yoshikazu, one of the volunteers at the disability school
  • Ohnishi Asae as Oikawa Asumi, Aya's roommate in disability school who suffers from the same disease
  • Kato Kazuko as Oikawa Kikue, Asumi's mother
  • Shiho as Takahashi Mami
  • Kato Kazuko as Fujimura Madoka
  • Nakada Yuuya
  • Sakaguchi Ryo

  • Okumura Tomofumi

  • Soundtrack

    Main Article: 1 Litre of Tears OST


    Episode Title Aired Kanto rating Kansai rating National rating
    Episode 01 "The Beginning of my Youth"
    ("ある青春の始まり"; "Aru seishuun no hajimari")
    October 11, 2005 13.5% 15.6% 12.7%
    Episode 02 "15 years old, sickness that steals up"
    ("15才、忍びよる病魔"; "15sai, shinobiyoru byouki")
    October 18, 2005 15.1% ??? ???
    Episode 03 "Why did the illness choose me?"
    ("病気はどうして私を選んだの"; "Byouki ha doushite watashi wo erandano")
    October 25, 2005 13.5% ??? ???
    Episode 04 "The Loneliness of Two"
    ("二人の孤独"; "Futari no kodoku")
    November 1, 2005 12.3% ??? ???
    Episode 05 "A disabled person's notebook"
    ("障害者手帳"; "Shougaija tenchou")
    November 8, 2005 14.6% ??? ???
    Episode 06 "Heartless glances"
    ("心ない視線"; "Kokoronai shisen")
    November 15, 2005 15.2% ??? ???
    Episode 07 "The place where I am"
    ("私のいる場所"; "Watashi no iru basho")
    November 22, 2005 16.2% ??? ???
    Episode 08 "1 Litre of Tears"
    ("1リットルの涙"; "1 rittoru no namida")
    November 29, 2005 15.4% ??? ???
    Episode 09 "I live now"
    ("今を生きる"; "Ima wo ikiru")
    December 6, 2005 15.5% ??? ???
    Episode 10 "Love Letter"
    ("ラブレター"; "Raburetā")
    December 13, 2005 16.6% ??? ???
    Episode 11 "Far away, to the place where tears are exhausted"
    ("遠くへ、涙の尽きた場所に"; "Tooku he, namida no tsukita basho ni")
    December 20, 2005 20.5% ??? ???
    Average % % %

    Special episode

    Main Article: 1 Litre of Tears (special)

    On April 5, 2007, Fuji Television aired a three-hour special of the series set five years after Aya's death (2019) and focuses on Haruto Asō, who has now become a doctor at the same hospital Aya was treated in, and Ako Ikeuchi, Aya's younger sister who is a nurse in training. Rika, Aya's youngest sister, just started high school. Haruto is caring for a 14-year-old female patient, Mizuki, who was bullied in school because of her disease, the same one that Aya had. Because of the bullying at school, Mizuki-chan decides not to receive therapy of any sort that would make her better, because she has lost her will to live. Haruto remembers how Aya fought her illness and lived her life with her disease; therefore, he offers support to his patient. Aya reappears in the episode using a number of flashbacks from the series and in new scenes.

    Comparison to the source material

    • Aya's family name was changed from Kito to Ikeuchi.
    • In reality, Aya also has another younger brother called Kentaro.
    • According to Shioka's book, "Hurdles of Life", written after Aya's death, her husband is an office worker and a tofu shop owner.
    • All place names are fictional. Aya Kito grew up in Toyohashi, Aichi Prefecture.
    • In both versions, Aya was diagnosed in 9th grade (3rd year of middle school). However, Aya Ikeuchi didn't show first symptoms until she was sitting in her entrance exams and switched schools after her official diagnosis. They both moved to a special-needs school during their first years of high school.
    • Aya Kito didn't play basketball pre-diagnosis.
    • They were both conductors in their school's choirs.
    • Aya Kito had never been in a relationship. Asō Haruto and his family are fictional characters created per the family's request.
    • Aya Ikeuchi's primary doctor is male instead of female.
    • Since the series is set in the mid-2000s, so the public payphones have buttons instead of rotary disks. They also use cell phones instead of pagers and letters.
    • Aya Ikeuchi was born in 1989, a year after Aya Kito's passing. Subsequently, all of the following events are set in the future, with her being admitted to the hospital in 2009 and dying in 2014. Aya Kito's original time of death, 12:55am, was kept, however.
    • Like in the original, Ako graduated from the same high school that Aya had to leave and both she and her mother work in healthcare.
    • Both Ikeuchi and Kito were in the biology club.
    • The Aya Kito's school uniform was dark-coloured but Ikeuchi's is white.


    Ako, Aya's sister, graduated from the same high school that Aya had to leave and both she and her mother started working in healthcare. Hiroki graduated from the same high school and is now a community policeman. Rika, too, went graduated from the same high school and is now a supplementary teacher in early childcare, similar to a teacher's aide. Aya's parents became motivational speakers and ambassadors for her disease.

    Morimoto Sarasa, the actress who played Rika in the special episode, left the entertainment industry in 2017 and became an occupational therapist.

    Alternate versions

    Indonesian Production House SinemArt's drama, titled Buku Harian Nayla (Nayla's Diary), plagiarizes 1 Litre of Tears. The series bears some striking resemblances, like the name "Aya" being replaced with "Nayla" (Chelsea Olivia) and Moses (Ralph Glenn Alinskie) in place of Asou. The series aired in RCTI as a special Christmas series. The resemblances between the two series have been discussed by the show's audience. The scenario was written by Serena Luna, also known as Chevyra Edenia.

    Indonesian fans of 1 Litre no Namida have reported this admitted act of plagiarism to Fuji TV and the Indonesian mass media, but there has yet to be a response. What most upsets the fans is that RCTI failed to credit or acknowledge Fuji TV and 1 Litre of Tears, from which the story is presumed to have been adapted, and noted that "This story is fictitious: the similarities of names, characters, places, and times are purely coincidental."

    Amrita TV dubbed 1 Litre no Namida and the Chinese drama Tears of Happiness is based on this drama.

    A Turkish remake of this drama titled Bir Litre Gözyaşı aired on Kanal D in 2018.



    • Original run: October 11, 2005 – December 20, 2005
    • Network and Timeslot: Fuji Television, Tuesday at 10:00-11:00pm
    • Theme song(s): "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen
    • Score by: Susumu Ueda

    Hong Kong

    • Original run: October 15, 2006 – December 31, 2006
    • Network and Timeslot: TVB Jade, Sunday at 10:30-11:30pm
    • Theme song(s): "Stubborn" ("固執") by Jason Chan


    • Original run: November 28, 2006 – January 2, 2007
    • Network and Timeslot: E-City, Monday and Tuesday at 11:00pm–12:00am
    • Theme song(s): "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen


    • Original run: May 4, 2007 – May 18, 2007
    • Network and Timeslot: Indosiar, Monday to Friday at 05:00-06:00pm
    • Theme song(s): "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen


    • Original run: July 2, 2007 – July 18, 2007
    • Network and Timeslot: Japan Entertainment Television, Monday to Thursday at 10:00-11:00pm
    • Theme song(s): "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen


    • Original run: August 4, 2007 – October 20, 2007
    • Network and Timeslot: 8TV, Saturday at 06:00 – 07:00pm
    • Theme song(s): "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen


    • Original run: May 5, 2008 - June 9, 2008
    • Network and Timeslot: Thai Public Broadcasting Service, Monday & Tuesday at 08:30 – 09:30pm
    • Theme song(s): "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen


    • Original run: May 25, 2009 – June 19, 2009
    • Network and Timeslot: GMA Network, Weekdays at 10:15 – 10:45pm
    • Theme song(s): "Walang Hanggan" by Wency Cornejo feat. Cookie Chua, "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen


    • Original run: September 3, 2012 - ?
    • Network and Timeslot: HTV3, Monday to Thursday at 9:30 - 10:30pm
    • Theme song(s): "Only Human" by K, "Konayuki" ("粉雪"; lit. "Powdered Snow") and "Sangatsu Kokonoka" ("3月9日"; lit. "March 9th") by Remioromen


    • The drama was based on the novel of the same name by Aya Kito.
    • Asae Ōnishi, the actress who plays Oikawa Asumi, portrayed Aya Kito in the 2005 movie 1 Litre of Tears.

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