Magnet Releasing, the genre arm of Magnolia Pictures, has acquired U.S rights to “Yakuza Princess,” an action thriller starring Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Japanese American singer Masumi. The film is directed by Vicente Amorim (“Motorrad”) and is adapted from Danilo Beyruth’s graphic novel “Shiro.
Magnet will release “Yakuza Princess” later this year.
The film unfolds in the expansive Japanese community of Sao Paulo in Brazil — the largest Japanese diaspora in the world. It follows Akemi (Masumi), an orphan who discovers she is the heiress to half of the Yakuza crime syndicate. After forging an uneasy alliance with an amnesiac stranger (Rhys Meyers) who believes an ancient sword binds their two fates, Akemi unleashes war against the other half of the syndicate who wants her dead.
“’Yakuza Princess’ is a wild ride of a movie,” said Magnolia President Eamonn Bowles in a statement. “The Brazilian backdrop infuses the action with a totally fresh take on the genre.”
“In ‘Yakuza Princess’ we threw out the playbook and pushed the boundaries of genre all the way in a bloodthirsty action movie about a Japanese girl’s coming-of-age and revenge,” said director Vicente Amorim. “I’ve been waiting to make a movie like this all my life.”
The screenplay was written by Amorim, Fernando Toste, Kimi Lee and Tubaldini Shelling. The latter produced the film with Andre Skaf and Filmland International. XYZ Films executive produced and is handling international sales.
The deal was negotiated by Magnolia EVP Dori Begley and Magnolia SVP of Acquisitions John Von Thaden with Pip Ngo from XYZ Films on behalf of the filmmakers.