According to the Hollywood Reporter on July 30, CW president Mark Pedowitz announced his network wants to bring the Japanese film “Battle Royale” to their network as a television series. This is an interesting development because many people recently have compared “The Hunger Games,” at least in theme, to “Battle Royale.”
In the movie, a government in the future gathers up a group of troubled Japanese school children and drops them onto an island where they are told to battle to the death. The last survivor is guaranteed their freedom.
While the ideas between the two movies are similar, “Battle Royale” is much more violent and disturbing than the young adult “Hunger Games” franchise.
While the idea is out there, it has not been green lit yet by the television network. Pedowitz said the property “comes with a nice cult following” and is “one of the predecessors of a lot of these things we do today.”
However, the problem will come in the violent nature of the original movie. Things will have to be tamed down, and by the time it is ready for network television, it might be a lesser copy of “The Hunger Games” and be nothing like the original “Battle Royale” movie. Pedowitz did say that they would not focus the show on the students killing each other.
“At this point in time, it’s only in development and we’re not even in development,” he said. “All we did was a phone call. We’re not planning to do anything that we cannot get on the air.”
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Shawn S. Lealos is a member of the Oklahoma Film Critics Circle, the professional film critics’ organization of Oklahoma. He is also working on a book about the Stephen King dollar babies called “Dollar Deal.” To read more of his writing, visit shawnlealos.net.