by Chris MaGee
The announcement of another TV series spin-off film isn't usually the most noteworthy piece of news. I say usually because when you hear that a hit Japanese TV series is going to get a major director at the helm and a record breaking budget, well, that is noteworthy; and that is exactly what's going to be happening with the NTV series "Kaibutsu-kun".
It was announced this past week that none other than Yoshihiro Nakamura, the man behind "Golden Slumber" and "Fish Story", will be directing the big screen spin-off of NTV's series adaptation of Fujiko Fujio's comic horror manga. The original manga appeared in Shōnen Gahosha Magazine from 1965 to 1969 and tells the story of Taro Kaibutsu, a magical boy who can shift shape, and the adventures of his monster friends - Dracula, Wolfman, Franken, etc. - as they battle much more sinister monsters in our human realm. "Kaibutsu-kun" was adapted by NTV into a live-action series last year starring ARASHI's Satoshi Ono as Kaibutsu-kun last year. During its run it enjoyed a whopping 24.2% rating amongst kids and families, so it's a bit of a no-brainer that it would be making the transition to the big screen.
Besides the presence of Nakamura behind the camera "Kaibutsu-kun " the movie will be set apart from other TV spin-offs by the fact that it will be shot entirely in 3D and that the budget is being estimated at ¥2 billion (roughly $24 million), a huge sum for a Japanese production. Part of the budget will be used to shoot portions of the film in the exotic jungles of Southeast Asia. No firm release date for "Kaibutsu-kun: The Movie" yet but producers are estimating a Japanese release date late this year. Until then take a peak at the cast of "Kaibustu-kun" doing a little song and dance for kids on Japanese TV in the video below. Thanks to Tokyograph for this news.