With superhero movie series like “Spider-Man” and “Batman” made and remade to death, it has become a clichÃ© to say that Hollywood is running out of ideas.
So what do you do when you run out of ideas? Get them from someone – or in the case of Hollywood – somewhere other. For many years now, Hollywood has tried unsuccessfully to bring popular Japanese anime and manga to the big screen. Likewise, TV networks and streaming services have followed suit in trying to produce live TV remakes of the same. A good example of this would be Netflix’s live action series “Erased. “
Unfortunately, good examples of live American adaptations are scarce. Whether it’s the difficulty of adapting stories between very different mediums or unsuccessful attempts to appeal to Japanese and American target audiences, it seems Western production companies just don’t seem to be successful.
While there are few good live-action adaptations, there are are some gems that really deserve a watch. The movies or shows on this list include three of the biggest failures and three of the most successful Western remakes of popular Japanese anime and manga.
1. Death notice (2017)
There are very few manga that have captured my interest – and dozens more around the world – as quickly as “Death Note” by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata.
From the same duo that brought us the hit series “Bakuman”, “Death Note” is a perfectly paced, heart-pounding crime thriller about a boy named Light Yagami who finds a death god’s notebook. The story revolves around a “death note” from the diary that has the power to kill anyone whose name is written on it.
As the saying goes, absolute power absolutely corrupts. Light begins his journey using the Death Note to rid the world of evil and heinous criminals. However, as he is pursued by police and FBI investigators, his sense of morality darkens and eventually he has no problem eliminating anyone who gets in his way.
After the manga’s release, the animated and live-action film adaptations in Japan were met with marginally high reception and positive reviews. While the American remake rights were initially held by the powerful Hollywood film studio Warner Bros. Entertainment, it was Netflix that ended up buying the film for its anime category. âDeath Noteâ was officially released only on Netflix on August 25, 2017 and couldn’t be seen anywhere else. He bombed. Receiving a 37% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it was less than half the score of the Japanese live-action “Death Note” 2007 film.
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