SANTA MONICA, Calif., March 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Threshold Entertainment
today announced its acquisition of "Ninja Scroll" from leading Japanese anime
studio Madhouse. The producers of the $4 billion Mortal Kombat feature film
franchise have tagged the property as its next blockbuster martial arts
franchise. Threshold plans to produce "Ninja Scroll" in all media including
television, live stage tours, video games, music and more. The Multimedia and
Intellectual Property Management giant, is currently developing the
$60 million effects laden live-action samurai feature film based on the 1994
blockbuster Anime movie. This acquisition marks one of many properties that
Threshold plans to acquire over the next six months and turn into global
mainstream entertainment as part of its overall buying strategy.
Created by award-winning action director Kawajiri Yoshiaki (Vampire Hunter
D, Demon City), "Ninja Scroll" is considered to be the yardstick by which all
other martial arts sword-fighting action anime is measured. Set in feudal
Japan, the sword and sorcery epic follows the adventures of Jubei, a ninja
mercenary, who is thrust into the middle of a war when the entire population
of a small village is wiped out by a mysterious plague. A tragic love story
ensues with Jubei's reluctant rescue of a beautiful and cursed ninja girl as
fate brings them together to fight a war with the eight devils of Kimon and
overthrow the Shogun government.
"We're always looking to acquire extraordinary properties with tremendous
growth potential. Ninja Scroll has all of the elements for a multi billion
dollar entertainment franchise," said Larry Kasanoff, chairman and CEO of
Threshold Entertainment. He added, "It's wild, sexy and innovative and one of
the coolest martial arts brands in the world."
Threshold revolutionized the feature film world when it became the first
company to successfully translate a videogame property, Mortal Kombat, into a
$4 billion blockbuster feature film franchise. The company has produced --
and made the brand number one -- in every medium in the world, including two
blockbuster feature films, a TV series and Radio City Music Hall Live Stage
show. It is now the most recognized martial arts brand the fifth largest
entertainment property in the world, just behind Star Wars and Batman.
"Though anime was originally born in America, it has had its own evolution
in Japan and become a part of Japanese culture. Given my long career running
one of the most progressive anime production companies in Japan, I was very
moved when Threshold made their first offer on Ninja Scroll. I felt anime had
finally evolved into something American audiences would find entertaining. I
am thrilled to see anime become a mutual language to bridge our cultures and
work toward the same goals," said Maruyama-San, founder and President of
Threshold Entertainment CIO, Joshua Wexler represented his company in the
transaction. Hikaru Sasahara of Digital Manga Inc. and Robert K. Yasui of
Yasui & Carroll negotiated the deal on behalf of Madhouse.
Threshold Entertainment's groundbreaking worldwide digital animation and
effects subsidiary, Threshold Digital Research Labs (TDRL), will supervise the
show's visual FX. Threshold's other subsidiary, Threshold.TV will create and
manage the online presence of the brand at www.ninjascroll.com .
Kasanoff will produce with Threshold's Alison Savitch, George Johnsen and
Joshua Wexler. Hikaru Sasahara will serve as co-producer.
Threshold Entertainment is the leading innovator in intellectual property
management, representing some of the best-known entertainment properties in
the world including Duke Nukem, Mortal Kombat, Playboy, Hellraiser, Pepsi
Co./Frito Lay, Ozzy Osbourne, Sunday Comics, Proctor & Gamble and many more.
The company develops brands for production and publication in film and
television and on the Internet, retaining ownership of digital assets. The
company recently set up a new videogame based film franchise, Duke Nukem, at
Dimension Films, and is currently in production on its first digitally
animated feature film, Foodfight! Threshold is also producing two PG-13
romantic comedies with Playboy Enterprises.
Larry Kasanoff is chairman and CEO of Threshold Entertainment and producer
of Mortal Kombat in all its incarnations. Formerly president and co-founder
with James Cameron of Lightstorm Entertainment, he supervised production of
"Terminator 2: Judgment Day" and executive produced "True Lies."
Threshold Digital Research Labs (TDRL) is a groundbreaking global digital
animation and visual effects production studio. The company produces original
full-length digitally animated feature films and also creates and produces
100% digital visual effects and animation for movies, TV, games, IMAX movies,
theme parks and location based entertainment and websites. The company has
created and produced digital visual effects for movies such as "I Still Know
What You Did Last Summer," "The Faculty," and "Dogma;" for TV commercials such
as "General Motors;" and for TV series like "Mortal Kombat: Conquest."
Threshold.TV is the premiere online entertainment network for guys ages
12-35 offering cutting edge original programming, streaming video, animation,
pay-per-view and pay-per-play, games and exclusive content linked to world
famous and new entertainment brands. The network serves as a launching pad
for these brands into all media including syndicated, cable and network
television, feature films, live stage tours, theme parks, live attractions and
venue based entertainment.
MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here
SOURCE Threshold Entertainment