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Looks like fans and judges are going to have a tough time deciding who to keep and who to let go.

The Japanese entertainment scene is currently in the middle of an idol boom, the likes of which the country hasn’t seen since the 1980s. One key difference between now and 30 years ago, though, is that these days Japanese pop culture has a much greater international presence and influence than it did before.

Case in point: The Idolmaster, Bandai Namco’s idol-management video game franchise that kicked off in 2005, has inspired a live-action Korean spinoff, titled The Idolmaster.KR. The drama’s unique, self-referential format portrays a group of would-be idols trying to break into the music world, with the characters themselves played by aspiring vocalists who successfully competed for a role by showcasing their singing and dancing talents.

Auditions started in May, and the field has now been pared down to 19 candidates, who have since been divided into two groups: A Team and B Team.

▼ A Team

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▼ B Team

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And while the final cast of the drama is yet to be selected, the producers are giving fans a glimpse of what might be with the release of two music videos.

A Team’s “Dream”

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B Team’s “One for All”

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While the drama is being produced by Tokyo-based Interactive Media Mix, the choreography shows a clear K-pop style, with more athletic movements and pronounced hip-shaking than accompanies typical J-pop idol tunes.

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▼ Although some moves would be pretty easy for even non-trained dancers to imitate, like bus patty-cake.

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The music, also, is a little less manic and more melodic than the more hyper-exuberant Japanese idol hits of recent years.

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Sadly, the fact that the final cuts have yet to be made means that some of the performers featured in the videos won’t be moving on to the final stages of the Idolmaster.KR project. If nothing else, though, their fans will always have these two songs to remember them by.

Follow Casey on Twitter, where he now knows it’s possible to have two songs stuck in your head at the same time.

Source: Famitsu via Jin
Featured image: YouTube/THE IDOLM@STER_KR_OFFICIAL
Insert images: YouTube/THE IDOLM@STER_KR_OFFICIAL (1, 2)