The franchise, set in ancient Japan and mixing historical events and personalities with a fictional fantasy about the rise of demonic forces, would make for an excellent adventure movie, full of wonderful setpieces, some terrific action sequences and plenty of monsters getting whacked upside the head. It's all about whether or not Gans can deliver though.
The very fact that he's not Uwe Boll is a very good sign already, and if his ability to understand the source material remains as clear as it did in Silent Hill, then we're talking about a film that might just be bloody awesome. Want to know more? The jump's right there for you to hit.
The Onimusha story is being adapted by Leslie Kruger and John Collee (Master and Commander) and while there's no studio confirmed yet, it's said that Essential Entertainment are showing some very strong interest. Due to be hot in China, production begins in February 2008 as of this report, set for a December 2009 release.
Gans himself is very positive on his involvement with the project:
"I have loved the Onimusha story for years and am overjoyed to have the opportunity now to bring it to life for worldwide film audiences and to access the unparalleled film resources of China to do so on the scale that the story demands."
Onimusha has always had a lot of critical praise heaped upon it and is certainly a fantastic series, but at the same time, doesn't have any deep mythos that could be potentially damaged by a film, if only in the eyes of fans. Its focus on the fighting and demonic side of things make it a very hard property to screw up in translation to the big screen. Plus anything involving Oda Nobunaga is gold. Expect a good old fashioned, sword swinging, popcorn movie of a romp in 2009.
And Guildenstern better be in it.
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