Warner Bros Pictures Japan has boarded its first local languageproduction Catch A Wave,based on a novel by teenage author Kazuma Toyota.

Toyota was 16 when he wrote hisnovel about three surfers who learn to respect nature when one of them attemptsto ride a typhoon wave to impress his girlfriend.

Toyota, now 17 and at high school, will adapt his own screenplayand becomes the youngest screenwriter in Japanese cinema history in theprocess.

Nobuyuki Takahashi, who directed the TV drama series Water Boys, makes his directorial debut, and TVstars Haruma Miura, Ryo Kimura and Rosa Kato have been cast in the lead roles.

Backed by the Japan Pro Surfing Association (JPSA), the projectbegan shooting on Sept 18 and will be released in Japan through Warner BrosPictures Japan in early summer 2006.

The move byWarner into Japanese production continues a wide-ranging programme which hasseen the studio back local-language production throughout Europe and Asia.