A dark satire that attacked the Japanese education system and the national drive to succeed at nearly any cost, Battle Royale created a furor upon its initial release to the point where politicians denounced the film on the floor of the Diet, the Japanese equivalent of Congress. With a story about a high school class placed on an island and instructed to kill each other until only one person survived, the film failed to get an initial release in the United States due to concerns over a recent spate of school shootings.
Fukasaku’s son, Kenta Fukasaku, is currently supervising the 2D to 3D conversion in Tokyo with an eye for a November 20th theatrical rerelease in Japan. There is no US distribution in place yet.
I am at a loss as to how this could be anything but a blatant money grab on the part of Toei. Battle Royale is a film that I’ve seen several times now and am a huge admirer of, and I really don’t see any other point to converting the film to 3D. A conversion does not add to the story that Fukasaku was telling or the themes he was exploring. I can only really see this as attempting to cash in on the film’s more exploitable elements. I guess that a conversion would enable the film to get in front of new audiences, but I’m not sure that that is a good enough trade-off.