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.