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Battle Royale coming to U.S. theaters at last (in 3-D, but still)

As we reported in May, Kinji Fukasaku’s son Kenta oversaw a recent 3-D conversion of his father’s violent, dystopic Battle Royale—a film that has never seen official release in the United States, but which has nevertheless wormed its way into the New Cult Canon through midnight screenings and bootleg video releases. At the time we speculated that a 3-D conversion, however cheap and unnecessary, might just be the impetus needed for U.S. distributors to finally bring it over officially, and it turns out that’s exactly what happened: Anchor Bay has picked up the theatrical rights for both the new, 3-D version of Battle Royale as well as its Kenta-directed, not-as-good sequel, Battle Royale II: Requiem, and plans on bringing both to U.S. theaters in 2011. At the time of its 2000 release, the original Battle Royale was avoided by distributors wary of anything related to high-school kids killing each other in the wake of Columbine; fortunately, American teens are all sociopaths anyway now, so we can handle it. [Tokyo Graph via Movieline]

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