Tokyopop Brings Manga to the Big Screen


Melissa Joan Hart to Star, Dan Gordon to Script
Live-Action Version of Hit Manga

Los Angeles, CA (September 29, 2004)--TokyoPop Inc.
has made good on its pledge to "take manga to the big
screen and beyond." The leading North American graphic
novel publisher has inked actress Melissa Joan Hart
(Sabrina, the Teenage Witch) and screenwriter Dan Gordon
(Wyatt Earp, The Hurricane) for a live-action feature
film development project inspired by Samurai Girl:
Real Bout High School (SG: RBHS), one of its top manga
and anime properties.

"The storyboard aspect of manga is already
custom-built for film," said Steve Galloway, TOKYOPOP's Executive
Director of Film/Television. "And with Hart and Gordon
attached to this story's fast-moving adventures, we
have all the makings of a terrific cinematic package for

The project materialized after TOKYOPOP was introduced
to Hartbreak Films, the producers of Sabrina, the
Teenage Witch and other quality family series and movies.
Seeking out fun, new starring vehicles for Melissa
Joan Hart, Executive Producer Paula Hart reviewed several
anime/manga properties before one in particular caught
her eye. The SG: RBHS manga called for a strong,
dynamic female lead with the same qualities for which
Melissa Joan Hart is famous. They immediately began looking
for a writer who could do justice to "Ryoko," the
manga's protagonist.

"Our journey led us to Dan Gordon," Paula Hart
recalled. "Dan took a few weeks reading the material and then
delivered a story that had us sitting on the edges of
our seats. It is smart, funny and terribly exciting."

Dan Gordon describes the script as "a delicious
action/comedy mix of Clueless meets Crouching Tiger, Hidden
Dragon." It's the story of an ancient Samurai warrior
reincarnated as a twenty-something-year-old sushi bar
hostess. Ryoko discovers she is mankind's only hope in
destroying a coven of murderous wolverines who are
hatched every 5,000 years and-if left unchecked-will
destroy all humanity.

TOKYOPOP and Hartbreak Films are now in conversations
with potential studio partners for the project.

TOKYOPOP® is an innovative youth-oriented
entertainment company that creates, licenses and publishes
hundreds of book, DVD and music properties. With millions of
books in print, including the hit series Fruits
Basket, Princess Ai, D.N.Angel, Tokyo Tribes, Love Hina and
Chobits, TOKYOPOP also discovers and promotes new
artists and writers, creating original manga such as
Warcraft, ShutterBox and @Large. Pioneers of the Cine-Manga®
book format, TOKYOPOP's best-selling releases feature
Finding Nemo, Shrek 2, Lizzie McGuire, SpongeBob
SquarePants, Greatest Stars of the NBA and Linkin Park's
Breaking the Habit. Its television properties include
Rave Master, Initial D, GTO and Reign: The Conqueror,
with consumer products programs tied into Rave Master,
Initial D, Stray Sheep and Princess Ai. Visit for additional information.

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