A top-secret auction for the film rights to the “Pokemon” franchise is nearing completion as Legendary Entertainment, Warner Bros. Pictures and Sony Pictures are all said to be vying for the property according to THR.
The Pokemon Co., the Japanese group that manages the rights to the franchise, has been courting Hollywood to launch a big-budget live-action movie based on the property.
Legendary, now a division of China’s Dalian Wanda Group, has emerged as a potential victor. However a Chinese company acquiring a beloved Japanese property could raise a stir considering the chilly political climate between the two countries – especially in cultural circles. China effectively banned Japanese films for three years, a ban only recently lifted.
Nevertheless the “Pokemon” franchise remains one of great value, the company behind it generating an estimated $1.5 billion per year in revenue from the property.