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Naruto Live-Action Movie to be Written by Tasha Huo

Tasha Huo, the showrunner of Netflix’s upcoming Tomb Raider animated series, has signed on to write the live-action Naruto movie. She’s working with Lionsgate on the film to bring the beloved anime to the big screen in a new way, Variety is reporting.

The studio has not yet disclosed specific plot details about the upcoming live-action screen adaptation of the Japanese manga series, which was penned and illustrated by Masashi Kishimoto. But the movie is expected to have in-depth chapters and focus on adventure and action, just like the manga.

Huo loves having the opportunity to adapt existing stories. She penned the upcoming Red Sonja film, which, along with the Tomb Raider anime series, are expected to be released next year.

“Adapting iconic characters or IP makes the writing of it easier, because the passion for writing it is already there,” the scribe said.

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“I’m so inspired by these characters already that it’s exciting to just take a part of their journey and try to tell that fun story in a way that would appeal to me as a fan.

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Initial reports of a live-action Naruto movie began to surface in 2015. There was speculation that Michael Gracey was onboard to direct the adaptation. It was also thought that Avi Arad would be producing the film alongside Geoff Shaveitz, Erik Feig and Kelly O’Malley. Arad is also currently partnering with Nintendo and Shigeru Miyamoto to develop a live-action Legend of Zelda movie.

The last time major update on the Naruto film was announced in 2018. At the time, Gracey said the movie’s team was still working on the script.

“So many Hollywood adaptations of really popular manga series just don’t get it right, and for me what was really important was that if I was gonna do Naruto, I wanted to actually work with Kishimoto and get a script to a stage where he would look at it and be excited about realizing it,” the helmer said. “Because no one knows the world better than the person who created it.”

Kishimoto’s serialized manga debuted in 1999 and quickly surged to the top of sales charts before it received an anime adaptation. The anime, which is globally revered and considered one of the best ever, explore the adventures of its titular character, Uzumaki Naruto, who is the Seventh Hokage.

The story of the evergreen Naruto follows the eponymous protagonist, who, shortly after being born, fuses with the nine-tail fox as an infant. With an ambition to become the Hokage, the leader of his village, the young ninja, who seeks recognition from his peers, dedicates himself to training from a tender age. His training includes joining the Leaf Village Academy and taking the chunin exams.

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The original manga series for Naruto consisted of 700 chapters that encapsulates the full story of the Seventh Hookage. It is one of the best-selling manga series in history, having 250 million copies in circulation worldwide.

When it was adapted into an anime, the manga was split into two television shows: Naruto and Naruto: Shippuden. A sequel series, Boruto: Naruto Next Generations, later followed from Kishimoto. The anime is accompanied by 11 animated films, 12 original video animations and multiple video games.

Talk of the Naruto adaptation follows in the wake of Netflix’s highly successful One Piece, which premiered in August. The fantasy adventure television show, which is a live-action adaptation of the manga series of the same name by Eiichiro Odam, has already been renewed for a second season.

Check out more of Karen Benardello’s articles.

Karen Benardello
Karen Benardello
As a life-long fan of films and television shows, and an endless passion for writing, Karen Benardello decided to combine the two for a career. She graduated from New York's LIU Post with a B.F.A in Journalism, Print and Electronic in 2008. Karen has since been working in the press in New York City, including interviewing film and television casts and crews, writing movie and television news articles and reviewing films and televisions series. Some of her highlights include attending such local events as the Tribeca Film Festival, the New York Film Festival and New York Comic-Con, as well as traveling across North America to attend such festivals as the Sundance Film Festival, SXSW and the Toronto International Film Festival. She has been a member of the Women Film Critics Circle since 2012, and the New York Film Critics Online since 2019.


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