Okuyama a film player again

Ousted Shochiku exec surfaces at prod. company

TOKYO — Kazuyoshi Okuyama, the Shochiku movie executive ignominiously removed from his job at a two minute board meeting in January, has landed a new post as the president of a movie production company financed by video arcade company Namco.

Details of the deal will be made clear later this month, but the movie production company will add another firm to the media group being built by Namco chairman Masaya Nakamura.

The new firm is expected to have starting capital of about $100,000 and be staffed by 10 close associates of Okuyama. Okuyama and his father Toru, Shochiku’s president, were ousted by conservative management who said the two were autocratic, arrogant, and incapable of making profits.

The younger Okuyama, 43, is one of Japan’s leading producers with about 40 films under his belt. He has been behind some of Japan’s best films of late such as “The Eel” — as well as numerous bombs that have been costly by Japanese standards.

Namco, a major supplier of software for Sony’s PlayStation video game, recently formed computer graphics studio Polygon Pictures with Sony Computer Entertainment.

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