Funimation Announces Acquisition and Theatrical Release of RUROUNI KENSHIN Film Trilogy
Live Action Samurai Films Based on Bestselling Manga Series to Hit Theaters Across the U.S. Starting in August
Source: Funimation Entertainment press release
Official Movie Site: warnerbros.co.jp/rurouni-kenshin (Japan), funimationfilms.com/rurouni-kenshin (US)
Special Thanks to Scott Lonski
Funimation Films is proud to announce its acquisition of the RUROUNI KENSHIN (るろうに剣心) live action, samurai film trilogy. The trilogy, distributed by GAGA Corporation, includes RUROUNI KENSHIN: ORIGINS (released as RUROUNI KENSHIN internationally), RUROUNI KENSHIN: KYOTO INFERNO (るろうに剣心 京都大火編, Rurouni Kenshin Kyoto Taika Hen, 2014) and RUROUNI KENSHIN: THE LEGEND ENDS (るろうに剣心 伝説の最期編, Rurouni Kenshin Densetsu no Saigo Hen, 2014). Funimation has secured the exclusive North American rights to theatrical, home entertainment, video on demand and broadcast distribution of all three titles as part of its agreement with GAGA. Funimation will release all three films in Japanese language with subtitles in U.S. theaters at the end of this summer — RUROUNI KENSHIN: ORIGINS on August 8 – 10, RUROUNI KENSHIN: KYOTO INFERNO on September 12 – 14 and RUROUNI KENSHIN: THE LEGEND ENDS on Oct 3 – 5.
The RUROUNI KENSHIN trilogy is based on the worldwide, bestselling manga series of the same name, which has sold more than 70 million copies and been recognized as a New York Times Bestseller. The storyline, set in feudal Japan during the Meiji period, centers on a former assassin Kenshin Himura who must confront a rapidly modernizing society following a fierce war. Joined by allies along the way, Kenshin faces new villains as he fulfills his vow to protect the innocent.
“We’re excited to be working with GAGA to bring this international box office hit trilogy to North America,’” said Gen Fukunaga, CEO and founder of Funimation. “This collection of movies stands out as incredibly authentic film adaptation that faithfully honors the original manga series. We’re eager to share RUROUNI KENSHIN with U.S. audiences in August.”
Of note, choreographer Kenjin Tanigaki served as action director of all three RUROUNI KENSHIN films. Tanigaki, dubbed one of the world’s top stunt choreographers by TimeOut, is part of the team behind action superstar Donnie Yen (IP MAN, DRAGON). Tanigaki’s long list of other film work includes BLADE II, KILL ZONE, and LEGEND OF THE FIST.
“Fans have been clamoring to see the RUROUNI KENSHIN film trilogy and we are pleased to finally be bringing it to theaters,” said Mike DuBoise, EVP and COO of Funimation. “The action choreography and production design throughout all three films is incredible and has to be experienced on the big screen. Fans will not want to miss seeing them.”
All three films, grossing more than $160M internationally, were well received by critics. “The sword fighting is amazing, the directing is brilliant, the casting nearly perfect… “ and “…May be the single best Japanese live-action adaptation…” proclaimed Kotaku “…Delivers grand thrills.” hailed Twitch Films. “Choreography is fast and furious…” said The Hollywood Reporter. “…A well-shot swordplay spectacular” declared The Guardian.
To commemorate today’s announcement, Funimation Films released the official theatrical trailer for the RUROUNI KENSHIN trilogy.
In the wake of a brutal civil war, Kenshin Himura, once a feared killer, turns his back on bloodshed and vows to carry a reversed-edge blade for the rest of his days. But Kenshin soon finds that the world around him is greatly changed. Rapid modernization has given rise to new villains driven by power and greed—and from the shadows of the past, the famed assassin Makoto Shishio has returned to wreak havoc across Japan. Together, with the beautiful kendo instructor Kaoru and a colorful cast of allies, Kenshin embarks on a quest to protect the innocent from those that would do them harm. In a staggering display of swordplay and martial arts mastery, Kenshin will attempt to survive his promise to face his own blade—before spilling the blood of his enemies!
About Funimation Films
Funimation Films, the theatrical division of Funimation Entertainment, acquires both anime and live action movies from prominent international filmmakers that appeal to the interests and passion of all types of fans and distributes them throughout North America. The division was launched in December 2014 following the box office success of “Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods” that same year. Funimation Films released “Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F'” a year later and which became #9 highest-grossing anime movie in North America. Funimation Entertainment is a subsidiary of Group 1200 Media, a fully integrated, next-generation, independent entertainment studio based in Dallas. For more information on Funimation Films, visit funimationfilms.com.
For more information on the RUROUNI KENSHIN movies, please see the earlier coverage here on SciFi Japan:
- RUROUNI KENSHIN Press Notes
- RUROUNI KENSHIN North American Premiere at 2012 LA EigaFest
- RUROUNI KENSHIN on Australian Blu-ray and DVD
- Madman Acquires Final RUROUNI KENSHIN Films — KYOTO INFERNO / THE LEGEND ENDS
- RUROUNI KENSHIN: KYOTO INFERNO / THE LEGEND ENDS Photo Galleries
- RUROUNI KENSHIN 2: KYOTO INFERNO Coming to UK Cinemas
- RUROUNI KENSHIN 2: KYOTO INFERNO Production Notes
- RUROUNI KENSHIN: THE LEGEND ENDS Gets UK Theatrical Release
- Warner Bros. UK Reschedules Release of RUROUNI KENSHIN: THE LEGEND ENDS
- RUROUNI KENSHIN: KYOTO INFERNO on Australian Blu-ray and DVD
- RUROUNI KENSHIN: THE LEGEND ENDS Character Posters from Warner Bros. UK
- RUROUNI KENSHIN 3: THE LEGEND ENDS — UK Cinema List
- RUROUNI KENSHIN: THE LEGEND ENDS on Australian Blu-ray and DVD
- RUROUNI KENSHIN: THE LEGEND ENDS North American Premiere at Fantasia 2015!