Distant Horizon has announced that David R. Ellis will direct the live-action remake of hit Japanese anime Kite, which is scheduled to go into production in January, 2012.

Ellis’ most recent film, Shark Night 3D, opened over the Labor Day weekend. 

The original Kite anime, written and directed by Yasuomi Umetsu in 1998, was banned in some countries, due to its excessive violence and eroticism, guaranteeing sales and cult status in Japan and other countries around the world.

The live-action Kite follows a young woman, Sawa, living in a failed state where the corrupt security forces profit from the trafficking of young women. When her policeman father is slain by a corrupt colleague, she sets out to track down his murderer with his ex-partner – unaware that he is the man who had her father killed.

Distant Horizon’s Anant Singh and Brian Cox are producing with Moisés Cosio and Alejandro Saevich of Detalle Films in Mexico.

“We are delighted to be collaborating with David Ellis on the live action remake of Kite,” said Singh. “We believe that his talent as an action director and his commercial sensibilities will bring immense value to the project and make it a success.”

Ellis said: “I am a big fan of Yasuomi Umetsu and honored to bring the amazing world of Kite to the big screen.”

Ellis is represented by Principato-Young Management and attorney Tom Hunter. Alan Grodin negotiated on behalf of Distant Horizon. Casting for the film is currently underway for a scheduled Jan 2012 production start.