On the heels of Sonic the Hedgehog’s theatrical success, Sega is pursuing yet another live-action film adaptation. This time, the source material will come from none other than the Yakuza series. Sega will produce the project, alongside 1212 Entertainment (Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark) and Wild Sheep. Specifics about the movie itself are scarce, but a statement from 1212 suggests series protagonist Kazuma Kiryu will sit center-stage.
A report from Variety notes Erik Barmack (Dark), Roberto Grande (Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark), and Joshua Long (1983) are on board to produce the Yakuza film. At present, 1212 Entertainment and Wild Sheep are looking for writers to pen the script. In a statement, 1212 Entertainment spoke highly of the vast possibilities Yakuza offers in terms of a live-action, big screen adaptation,
Yakuza offers us a new playground in which to set compelling stories with complex characters in a unique environment that audiences have rarely seen before. The saga of Kazuma Kiryu has a built-in cinematic appeal–a mix of kinetic action with bursts of comedy, multiple converging storylines, and a gripping journey towards redemption.
Yakuza first hit the scene in 2005 as a PlayStation 2 exclusive from Sega. The action-adventure series has since gone on to generate quite the expansive audience around the globe, and it continues to grow in popularity. Yakuza’s most recent entry, Yakuza: Like a Dragon, moves on from series protagonist Kazuma Kiryu to focus on a new leading man–Ichiban Kasuga. It’s gameplay also represents a departure from the franchise, since real-time beat ’em up mechanics have been replaced with a turn-based style of play.
Like a Dragon is already out in Japan, but comes westward on November 13th for the PS4, PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X. A PlayStation 5 version will arrive on an unspecified later date.