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Destin Daniel Cretton to Helm and Write NARUTO Live-Action Adaptation

    NARUTO © 1999 by Masashi Kishimoto/SHUEISHA Inc.

    Global content leader Lionsgate has closed a deal with director Destin Daniel Cretton (Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings) to write and direct its highly anticipated live-action adaptation of the manga classic NARUTO. The announcement was made today by Adam Fogelson, chair, of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group. 

    The motion picture will be based on the manga created by Masashi KishimotoNARUTO has printed over 250 million copies in more than 60 countries and territories. 

    “It was a true honor to meet Kishimoto-san in Tokyo and hear his expansive vision for his creation,” stated filmmaker Cretton. “We are very excited to collaborate and bring NARUTO to the big screen.” 

    Masashi 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 in the production process. 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.”

    Fogelson said, “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.  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 is one of the greatest manga ever written that has captivated hearts and minds globally,” said producers Avi and Ari Arad. “Collaborating with the legendary Kishimoto-san and the esteemed team at Shueisha has been a joy and an honor. We are beyond excited to have Destin at the helm, bringing this cherished saga to life under the Lionsgate banner.” 

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

    Cretton previously collaborated with Lionsgate on the film The Glass Castle. The studio’s James Myers, who oversaw that project, will also oversee NARUTO, alongside Jon Humphrey.

    Bonnie Stylides oversaw the negotiations of the deal for Lionsgate. Cretton is represented by WME and Goodman, Genow, Schenkman, Smelkinson & Christopher.

    DESTIN DANIEL CRETTON  previously directed the box-office blockbuster Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings and the multiple award-winner Short Term 12, among other films. He is set to direct a Shang-Chi sequel. He most recently executive produced the series “American Born Chinese” for Disney+. 

    Tony M.