Nikkatsu is reviving its signature "roman porno" genre, on which many mainstream helmers cut their teeth, after a 22-year gap.
Overseas auds have long clamored for more varied product from Hollywood, and in 2009 the biz's potpourri paid off robustly.
Shipments of video software in Japan, including DVDs, fell 5% last year, the fifth year straight that a drop has been recorded.
Japanese pubcaster NHK is forecasting a $61 million loss for its fiscal 2010 budget as more cash-strapped households become exempt from paying fees.
The Yubari Fantastic Film Festival has unveiled the lineup for its 20th edition, which will unspool Feb. 25- March 1.
Miwa Nishikawa's "Dear Doctor," a drama about a quack practicing in a rural village, won best film honors in the Kinema Junpo critics' poll.
Sales of games software and hardware fell 6.9% in Japan last year to $5.92 billion, according to figures compiled by game biz mag Enterbrain.
Fuji Television Network, one of Japan's five commercial networks, won the overall ratings contest last year, according to ratings agency Video Research.
NHK's "The Red White Song Contest" captured a market share of more than 40% Thursday.
Distrib Sony Pictures Entertainment Japan made $190 million at the box office in the first 11 months of the year, an all-time company record that beat its 2007 high of $176 million.
Sony will unify international distribution for its vidgames and core electronics in 2010, according to the Nikkei newspaper.