J.J. Abrams to helm Hollywood live remake of hit anime Your Name

Your Name, which raked in US$355.3 million (S$483.3 million), is the highest grossing anime film at the global box office and the fourth-highest grossing film of all time in Japan.
Your Name, which raked in US$355.3 million (S$483.3 million), is the highest grossing anime film at the global box office and the fourth-highest grossing film of all time in Japan. PHOTO: GOLDEN VILLAGE PICTURES

SINGAPORE - Japanese anime hit, Your Name, is set to get a Hollywood live-action remake by Paramount Pictures and prolific producer J.J. Abrams.

Your Name, which raked in US$355.3 million (S$483.3 million), is the highest grossing anime film at the global box office and the fourth-highest grossing film of all time in Japan. Created by Japanese director Makoto Shinkai, the story centres around two high school students, a girl and a boy, who swop bodies and attempt to prevent an impending disaster.

It has also picked up several awards, including Best Animated Film at the 2016 Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards and Screenplay of the Year at the 40th Japan Academy Prize.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the remake will be co-produced by Abrams, known for blockbuster franchises such as Mission: Impossible, Star Wars and Star Trek, Genki Kawamura, the producer of the original 2016 anime, and Lindsey Weber from Abram's production company, Bad Robot. Japan-based company Toho Co., which produced the original, will also help on the remake, and distribute it in Japan.

Screenwriter Eric Heisserer, who was nominated for an Oscar for his work on sci-fi drama Arrival (2016), will write the screenplay.

Shinkai said in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter: "Your Name is a film created with the innate imaginations of a Japanese team and put together in a domestic medium. When such a work is imbued with Hollywood filmmaking, we may see new possibilities that we had been completely unaware of. I am looking forward to the live-action film with excited anticipation."

Entertainment trade website Variety reported that Kawamura was similarly enthusiastic about the remake.

"Just like in the film it feels like a dream," he said. "Mr. Abrams and his team have captivated audiences in their masterful reinvention of known properties. And Mitsuha and Taki have found a perfect narrator, Mr. Heisserer, to tell their sci-fi infused love story, which gave the film such drive. The meetings so far have been creatively stimulating with fantastic ideas that no doubt will make for a great movie. I am greatly honoured to work with these incredible creators in bringing to audiences the Hollywood live-action version of Your Name."