Bionic ‘Dororo’ splits into trilogy

Film the biggest domestic hit of the new year

TOKYO — Japan’s TBS web plans to make two sequels to its smash action/fantasy “Dororo.”

After four straight weeks at the top of the B.O. and with a gross approaching Y3 billion ($25.2 million), “Dororo” is the biggest domestic hit of the new year.

TBS, which led the consortium that produced the pic for $16.8 million, now plans to make what producer Takashi Hirano describes as a “trilogy like ‘The Lord of the Rings.’ ”

“We had planned on making three films if the first was a hit,” Hirano told the Sankei Sports paper on Thursday.

Story development for the next two films is already underway, based on the classic comic by Osamu Tezuka.

The budget for the two new pics is expected to total $50.4 million. The stars of the first pic, Kou Shibasaki and Satoshi Tsumabuki, are clearing their schedules for the sequels.

In the first pic, Tsumabuki played a bionic warrior on a quest to recover 48 parts of his body that his warrior father had given to demons in exchange for power. Shibasaki played the femme thief who tagged after him to learn the secret of his amazing powers.

Universal bought all North American rights for the first “Dororo.”

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