Sex Education star Aimee Lou Wood has landed her first lead movie role alongside Bill Nighy in adapted drama Living.

The movie is an English language adaptation of the 1952 Japanese classic Ikiru, written by Akira Kurosawa, Shinobu Hashimoto and Hideo Oguni.

Set in 1952 London, it follows a veteran civil servant (Nighy) who, after discovering he has a fatal illness, sets out to find meaning in his grey and monotonous life before he passes away. Eventually, he’s aided in his quest for fulfilment by a young, carefree co-worker played by Wood.

The synopsis reads: “He first attempts, with limited success, to throw himself into debauchery during a wild night in Brighton in the company of a bohemian writer he befriends there.

“Then, arriving back in London, he ignores family and work responsibilities for days on end. But soon he becomes intrigued by Margaret (Wood), a young co-worker in his office, who appears to exemplify exactly what life and living is – and what may so far have passed him by.

“As their friendship grows, she – inadvertently – shows him a way to face down his mortality; how to harness his years of experience and dedication into a final supreme effort to push through, against all odds, a modest, much-delayed project for children in a poor district of East London.”

The film is directed by Oliver Hermanus, while the screenplay is adapted by Nobel and Booker Prize winner Kazuo Ishiguro.

“The inner story suggests that it’s the responsibility of each of us to bring meaning and satisfaction to our life,” said Ishiguro. “That even against the odds, we should try to find a way to be proud of, and happy with, the lives we lead.

“I believe this story can speak to the many of us obliged to spend long hours each day anchored to desks and screens – all the more so in this era of COVID – struggling to see what our individual contributions can possibly amount to within the broader picture.”