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Yakuza lead says a Hollywood Yakuza movie "will only proceed if it’s really good"

(Image credit: SEGA)

Yakuza boss Toshihiro Nagoshi has confirmed that plans for a Hollywood movie based on the Yakuza franchise will only go ahead "if it's really good".

In a livestream shared during Tokyo Game Show, Nagoshi responded to the news that Sega had teamed up with 1212 Entertainment and Wild Sheep Content for a new movie based upon the hit game series. While we've yet to have confirmation of any writers or director, the movie will be produced by Erik Barmack, Roberto Grande and Joshua Long.

“We had an offer from the West, and a Yakuza movie is now underway in Hollywood,” confirmed Nagoshi (thanks, IGN) on the livestream. “In a case like this, usually you have the side that wants to [license the IP for other projects] and the side that owns the IP, and a deal tends to be done as business. But in this case, I made it clear from the beginning that if the content itself was no good and I didn’t agree with it, then I would not want to do it, and I’ve been very upfront about it.

“I’ve told them that it will only proceed if it’s really good,” Nagoshi added. “So it’s a bit of a different arrangement than the standard alliance. I don’t think [a Yakuza movie] is something that needs to be done for the sake of it, so it can only happen if it’s going to be good.”

“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,” 1212 said. “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.”

In related news, another big franchise getting the Hollywood treatment is Uncharted. The perpetually unlucky project was delayed due to the spread of coronavirus earlier this year, with executives halting pre-production – originally "for at least six weeks" – because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The delay came shortly after Antonio Banderas joined proceedings in an unknown role alongside the already-announced Tom Holland as Nathan Drake and Mark Wahlberg as Victor “Sully” Sullivan.

Now, however, we've finally – finally! – seen our first glimpse of on-set action. In leaked set photos, we see Mark Wahlberg’s Sully, as well as he and Tom Holland’s Nathan Drake looking suspiciously suave in what looks a lot like a scene from Uncharted 4.

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Vikki Blake
Part of GR+'s news crew, Vikki is a (jumpy) survival horror survivalist with a penchant for sci-fi, shooters, thrillers, and a strong cup of Yorkshire tea. A committed Guardian and Spartan, she's terrible at FPSs, but loves 'em all the same.