Battle Royale in 3D?
According to news today there's going to be a 3D version of Battle Royale made. Now I don't mean a brand new version of the film, I mean that the existing Battle Royale by Kinji Fukasaku is going to be converted into 3D and re-released.
To add a little family drama to the story, Fukasaku's son, Kenta Fukasaku, is the one supervising the conversion, he previously took over the directing of the sequel Battle Royale 2: Requiem when his father died in 2003.
It sounds strange as I don't even know why we would want to see a 3D version of the film when the original is so good anyway. Well, I can tell you one reason, the film is one of the widest selling films ever in Japan. Note I said ever.
That's even more surprising when you consider it was made in 2000, not really that long ago.
One thing that helped it become so successful is the fact that Japanese politicians attempted to ban it when it was first released, something to do with the fact that groups of school children were trying to murder each other with strange arrays of weaponry, something they achieved rather successfully too.
Battle Royale sees a Japan where the younger age group have become rebellious and are causing the government great concern, so their idea is to randomly pick a class of school children each year, take them off to an island, give them unusual weapons, and force them to kill each other while the whole event is televised. The winner receives a great reward. This helps keep the younger population in check and keeps the fear of the government firmly in their minds.
It's a great film, despite the shock value you might think it would have, and it's a film that's been touted as prime for a Hollywood remake, but it just never made it.
Now it looks like they'll be cashing in on it some more, and with the craze of 3D perhaps this will bring in more money from the fans of the original. I find it hard to understand why Kenta Fukasaku is keen to do this to the film, yet there it is in the Screen Daily story. I wonder if Kinji Fukasaku would be proud?
My advice? Avoid it and stick with the 2D original. Why go see a computer converted copy?