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Destin Daniel Cretton Signs On 'Naruto' Live-Action Movie

 Naruto is one of the most successful mangas in history. Running between 1999-2014 it shifted more than 250 million copies worldwide. Created by Masashi Kishimoto the series was also adapted into two successful anime series Naruto and Naruto Shippuden. With such pedigree behind it, it's little wonder that Hollywood has come calling.

Lionsgate announced a live-action adaptation of Naruto was in the works some years ago. It was initially announced that Michael Gracey was attached to direct. Now, it has been announced that the project has come back to life and that now Destin Daniel Cretton has signed on to write and direct the film. Cretton is the director of Marvel's Shang Chi And The Legend Of The Ten Rings.

Cretton met with Kishimoto in Tokyo and explained his vision for the film."It was a true honour to meet Kishimoto-san in Tokyo and hear his expansive vision for his creation," said Cretton. "We are very excited to collaborate and bring Naruto to the big screen." 

Kishimoto said "When I heard of Destin’s attachment, it happened to be right after watching a blockbuster action film of his, and I thought he would be the perfect director for Naruto. After enjoying his other films and understanding that his forte is in creating solid dramas about people, I became convinced that there is no other director for Naruto"

"In actually meeting Destin, I also found him to be an open-minded director who was willing to embrace my input, and felt strongly that we would be able to cooperate together in the production process," he continued. "To put it simply, the live-action Naruto is bound to be a film with spectacular action and profound drama. I can’t help but be excited for it."

Avi Arad, Ari Arad and Emmy Yu will produce for Arad Productions with Jeremy Latcham. Cretton will produce alongside Jeyun Munford through his company Hisako.

"This manga classic is beloved by millions of fans all around the world, and Destin has delivered a vision for the movie that we believe will excite that massive fan base as well as those who are new to it," Lionsgate's Adam Fogelson said. "Avi and I have had the pleasure of working together before and I know that as we collaborate with Destin and the team on Naruto, we are in extraordinary hands."

Naruto follows the adventures of Nartuo Uzamaki a young would-be ninja who dreams of becoming the protector of his village. The series starts off with hijinx at Ninja School but in later episodes deals with full-on Ninja wars. It remains to be seen which version of Naruto we will see in live-action.

Naruto joins a number of films based on anime and manga in development in Hollywood including My Hero Academia, Gundam, Your Name and allegedly Akira, although we'll believe that one when we see it.