Japanese sci-fi lures Hollywood

Don Murphy, Michael Davis eye adaptations

Japanese advertising agency Dentsu and Hayakawa Publishing Corp. have entered into a live-action feature rights deal for Japanese sci-fi novels that have attracted the interest of “Transformers” producer Don Murphy and “Shoot ‘Em Up” helmer Michael Davis.

Angry Films principal Murphy plans to develop an adaptation of sci-fi author Issui Ogawa’s novel “Tokisuna no Ou” (“The Lord of the Sands of Time”), which Hayakawa published in 2007.

Time-travel war novel takes place in the 26th century after human life on Earth has been annihilated by alien invaders. Story follows a messenger who is sent back to the past to battle the aliens.

“I see enormous potential in the unique and vast scale of this work and in the story that describes the love between a messenger from the future and the shaman queen of a bygone era,” Murphy said.

In addition, Davis has agreed to direct and produce “Mardock Scramble,” based on the popular novel by author Tow Ubukata. An animated adaptation was a box office hit in Japan, and the sequel will be released this fall. Story follows a young prostitute who acquires the ability to interfere with electronics and teams with a shape-shifting mouse to exact revenge on the crime boss who nearly killed her.

Murphy is currently developing a “Captain Planet” movie. He most recently produced DreamWorks’ family film “Real Steel,” which grossed nearly $300 million worldwide.

Dentsu aims to bring Japanese art forms such as manga, anime and other printed content to global auds through film and TV productions.

Joyce Jun of Katten Muchin Rosenman brokered the deals.

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