John Woo is set to direct and produce gangster drama Day Of The Beast, an English-language remake of Seijin Suzuki’s 1963 classic Youth Of The Beast.

Woo and Terence Chang’s Lion Rock Productions will co-produce with Nikkatsu as part of the Japanese studio’s 100th anniversary celebrations.

Rob Frisbee scripted the remake which will be produced by Woo, Chang and Nikkatsu president Naoki Sato. Lori Tilkin, Aki Sugihara and Yoko Asakura are executive producing. 

Set in Tokyo, the story follows a western outsider who becomes embroiled in a global turf war between Japanese Yakuza and Russian mobsters.

“This remake is my salute to the great films and filmmakers produced by Nikkatsu’s 100 years in cinema history. It is exciting for me as well as an honour,” said Woo.

Nikkatsu’s Naoki Sato said: “Among Nikkatsu’s 6,000 plus film library, this is one of our most revered titles. We have a tremendous amount of respect for Mr. Woo and are excited he is directing this film for the international market. 

Chang said: Seijun Suzuki’s Youth Of The Beast is one of my favourite films, and I have been obsessed with remaking it for over 10 years.  I have to thank Nikkatsu for this partnership and for making this dream come true.”