Publisher forms production company

VIZ Media, a San Francisco-based publisher of Japanese manga and graphic novels, has formed a production company to exploit its content catalog.

, a former production exec at Amblin and DreamWorks.

and “Naoki Urasawa’s Monster.”

Hoffs will serve as a liaison between Japanese creative licensors and Hollywood, and the company will develop to produce some of the titles inhouse.

VIZ effort is another recent example of publishers, from the New York Times to vidgame companies such Capcom, becoming proactive in exploiting film projects hatched from their content.

“Properties like `Naruto,’ `Bleach,’ `Death Note,’ `Vampire Knight’ and `Monster’ are just a few properties that show the massive appeal of manga to many different demographics, and we have an almost endless pool of titles to draw from,” Hoffs said.

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