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Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

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Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

Old 08-24-11, 08:42 PM
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Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

Okay I need to take deep breaths.

"Good" news: This does not include

Seven Samurai, High and Low, "Drunken Angel and Ikiru. The bad news is that those are all already being remade.

Bad news: Everything else is up for being remade, including 19 unproduced screenplays.

Now I am a huge Kurosawa fan. I have a number of books on him, and own all his movies except for two, but still have yet to see them all. So this news is a weird feeling. I would pay big bucks to have the 19 screenplays in English in book form, but to see them made? I know one of his scripts was made into a film by someone in 1999, not sure how that was though. I dunno....

http://www.variety.com/article/VR1118041655

Looks like they have a section on this already.

http://splendentmedia.com/akira-kurosawa/

They have the rights to the following:

Directed by Kurosawa:
Spoiler:
Sanshiro Sugata - 1943
The Most Beautiful - 1944
Sanshiro Sugata Part 2 - 1945
The Men who Tread on the Tiger’s Tail - 1945
No Regrets For Our Youth - 1946
One Wonderful Sunday - 1947
The Quiet Duel - 1949
Stray Dog - 1949
Scandal - 1950
Rashomon - 1950
Idiot - 1951
Record of a Living Being - 1955
Throne of Blood - 1957
The Lower Depths - 1957
The Hidden Fortress - 1958
The Bad Sleep Well - 1960
Yojimbo - 1961
Sanjuro - 1962
Red Beard - 1965
Dodes’Ka- Den - 1970
Dersu Uzala - 1975
Kagemusha - 1980
Ran - 1985
Dreams - 1990
Rhapsody in August - 1991
Madadayo - 1993


Written by Kurosawa:
Spoiler:
Currents of Youth (Seishun No Kiryu) - 1942
A Triumph of Wings (Tsubasa no Gaika) - 1942
Wrestling Ring Festival (Dohyosai) - 1944
Brava Tasuke Isshin! (Appare Isshin Tasuke) - 1945
Four Love Stories (Yottsu No Koi No Monogatari [segment "Hatsukoi"]) - 1947
Snow Trail (Ginrei No Hate) - 1947
The Portrait (Shozo) - 1948
Lady from Hell (Jigoku no Kifujin) - 1949
Jakoman and Tetsu (Jakoman to Tetsu) - 1949
Desertion at Dawn (Akatsuki No Dasso) - 1950
Jiruba Tetsu - 1950
Fencing Master (Tateshi Danpei) - 1950
Beyond Love and Hate (Ai To Nikushimi No Kanata E) - 1951
The Den of Beasts (Kedamono No Yado) - 1951
Vendetta of a Samurai (Araki Mataemon: Kettô Kagiya no Tsuji) - 1952
Sword For Hire (Sengoku Burai) - 1952
Blow! Spring Wind (Fukeyo Haru Kaze) - 1953
Vanished Enlisted Man (Kieta Chutai) - 1955
Hiba Arborvitae Story (Asunaro Monogatari) - 1955
Advance Patrol (Nichiro sensô shôri no hishi: Tekichû ôdan sanbyaku-ri) - 1955
Saga of the Vagabonds (Sengoku Gunto-Den) - 1959
Alley Cat (Dora-Heita) - 2000
After the Rain (Ame Agaru) - 1999
The Sea is Watching (Umi wa Miteita) - 2002


Unproduced:
Spoiler:
Mizuno Jyuro Zaemon - 1938
The German Of Darumaji - 1941
Shizuka Nari - 1942
Yuki - 1942
Mori no Sen Ichiya - 1942
Utsukushiki Koyomi - 1942
Sampagita No Hana - 1942
Dai San Hatoba - 1942
Jajauma Monogatari - 1944
Dokkoi Kono Yari - 1945
The People Of Kan-Oke-Maru - 1951 (Synopsis coming soon)
Ezo Tanken Ki - 1951
Hibi Heian - 1958
Aka Oni -1966
Soshite - 1966 (Synopsis coming soon)
Runaway Train (Boso Kikansha) - 1966
Kaachan - 1969
Si No Ie No Kiroku - 1977
Black Masque of the Death - 1977 (Synopsis coming soon)
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Old 08-24-11, 08:59 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

for the lazy:

Splendent Media has signed a multiyear deal to represent worldwide rights (outside Japan) to 69 titles from filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, including 19 screenplays that were never produced.
Deal does not include the four Kurosawa-based projects already in various stages of development elsewhere, including the Weinstein Co.'s "Seven Samurai," as well as "High and Low," "Drunken Angel" and "Ikiru."

Available properties do include 26 directed by Kurosawa -- "Rashomon," "Ran," "Yojimbo," "Dreams" and "Kagemusha," to name a few -- plus 24 he wrote but did not direct and the 19 screenplays that never lensed.

Sakiko Yamada, principal of Splendent Media, announced the deal Monday with Hideyoshi Kato, execution committee president of rights-holder Akira Kurosawa 100 Project.

"We are thrilled and deeply honored to have been entrusted to represent this spectacular treasure trove of films and screenplays, and to help contemporary filmmakers introduce a new generation of moviegoers to these unforgettable stories," Yamada said.

Los Angeles-based Splendent Media will serve as a sales agent but will also consider producing some titles. Yamada, who formed Splendent in 2010, is an exec producer on the Al Pacino-directed feature "Wilde Salome," which premieres at this year's Venice Film Festival.

"In recent years, countless American and European filmmakers have expressed intense interest in remaking Kurosawa's films," Kato said. "To help streamline this process, we are extremely pleased to have found in Ms. Yamada a representative who possesses a deep passion for Kurosawa's work as well as strong connections to both the Japanese and U.S. entertainment industries."

A complete list of titles and synopses can be found at Splendentmedia.com.
My kneejerk reaction is of the Will Smith variety. Since I highly doubt they'll literally remake the films as they were and give them some type of modern update...I'm not...as hurt.

Won't be the 1st time someone has (literally) remade Yojimbo, Seven Samurai, Rashomon (Sidley Lumet did it for TV...I would like to see that), Sanshiro Sugata 1 & 2, The Hidden Fortress, Stray Dog, and High & Low.

Last edited by Solid Snake; 08-24-11 at 09:14 PM.
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Old 08-24-11, 09:03 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

And now how about your thoughts on the news SS?
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Old 08-24-11, 09:19 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

Still the same I guess. I am shocked at the amount of works that are out there. Not shocked about someone remaking an AK film.

Since I don't know much of the business side of film...how much would something like that cost? Or is there some picture by picture licensing thing?
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Old 08-24-11, 09:22 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

I will see absolutely none of these. There is enough real Kurosawa for me to catch up on anyways.
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Old 08-24-11, 09:27 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

Is this just about remakes or the actual films? Like Criterion is still all good, right?

I love Kurosawa's films, read a couple books on him, however, not really worried about Hollywood remaking or creating new films based on his scripts. I think that's actually kinda cool.
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Old 08-24-11, 09:42 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt View Post
Is this just about remakes or the actual films? Like Criterion is still all good, right?

I love Kurosawa's films, read a couple books on him, however, not really worried about Hollywood remaking or creating new films based on his scripts. I think that's actually kinda cool.
That was my worry as well.

On the topic of disliking remakes, deep down..if it was in some very grand from a literal remake of a great film? I'm bothered by that, most if not all times..THOUGH some interesting takes on the material at times turn it into a solid flick. Bad film remade into good film? Yeah, I'm fine.

Modern updating though, which is what I'm assuming most of them will be like...I'm not bothered by that too much. If these get made into bad films? Oh well...doesn't tarnish AK's film. Am I pleased that all those AK stories are there to be remade? Not exactly. I won't condemn a remake outright, but it is still very shocking to see that all of AK's stuff can be remade especially w/ this announcement. That ability given out all at once? Scary in a way.
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Old 08-24-11, 10:03 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

As long as the originals are still available for me to watch, I'm fine. Hollywood is going to produce remakes anyway--why not remake a good story instead of a bad one. Seven Samurai is one of my favorite films but the remake is good too.

Some people will watch the remake and want to watch the original. Some will watch the remake and never want to watch the original, but they never would have watched the original anyway.
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Old 08-24-11, 10:37 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

Terrible. Nothing good can come of remaking Kurosawa films. Nothing!

What next, remaking a classic like A Fistful of Dollars or The Magnificent Seven?
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Old 08-24-11, 11:08 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

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Old 08-24-11, 11:18 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

I just hope they never remake Rashomon into a movie about social media.
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Old 08-25-11, 06:33 AM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

My Japanese is shaky, but there have been a couple of articles in the past day which seem to suggest that Kurosawa Production, the production company that Kurosawa founded and which is headed by Kurosawa's son and which at least used to own the rights, did not know about this deal. Which sounds a bit bizarre.

As I said, it could just be my Japanese, but then again it's not the first time that bizarre things have happened with Kurosawa's legacy.

I'm not sure how much you guys have been following what's been going on with these things, but the last year and a half has been quite disappointing in many ways. First, it was reported that Kurosawa Foundation (also headed by Kurosawa's son) was having some financial difficulties. A few months later, it was announced that plans to build a Kurosawa museum were finally abandoned after more than 10 years in the making. Even the small satellite studio in Imari closed. Then, the whole Kurosawa Foundation was suddenly dissolved. The City of Imari, where the museum was to be, launched an investigation. But perhaps the biggest bomb was that DesignEXchange, a company that in 2007 bought rights to Kurosawa's screenplays (Kurosawa's son was a member of the board there as well), suddenly went belly up. It could actually be that Splendent Media's snatching the rights is somehow linked to this, although this is just my speculation.

So, quite a bit has happened. I don't personally know what to think of Splendent Media's acquisition of the rights, but I'm optimistic, and hoping for the best. After all, the Japanese remakes that have come out in the past couple of years haven't exactly been brilliant anyway, so I suppose the only way is up.

Sorry about linking so abundantly to my own website, but I thought that the above might give some background to the rights acquisition.
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Old 08-25-11, 09:48 AM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt View Post
I just hope they never remake Rashomon into a movie about social media.
Unless the Japanese do it--and only if they cast it with some of my favorite J-pop stars
...like this stage musical based on "Chushingura":

Last edited by Ash Ketchum; 08-25-11 at 01:13 PM.
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Old 08-25-11, 12:44 PM
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Re: Splendent Media acquires rights to around 60 of Kurosawa's works.

I've seen two great films that have been made from unproduced Kurosawas scripts. Runnaway Train and Before the Rain Lifts. I had no idea there were 19 unproduced screenplays. Those could definately yield some great films. Remakes of existing films don't excite me that much.
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