Manga Yente

July 20, 2008

As we near Comic-Con International, Variety has run a piece that reminds me strangely of an old-fashioned debutante announcement in a local paper. Film executives looking for your next super-hero franchise, meet Jason Hoffs:

“Hoffs will serve as a liaison between Japanese creative licensors and Hollywood, and the company will develop to produce some of the titles inhouse.”

Hoffs lists some of the more alluring properties, and, really, even if a live-action Hollywood version of Naruto flat-out sucks, it might still make its money back on its opening weekend.

And while the article never specifically says that Hoffs will be at SDCC, could the subtext be any clearer? Exploitable properties will be lined up like trust-fund babies at a private-school reunion, and an experienced movie executive is available to play matchmaker. And unlike publishers who have tried to line up movie pitches before they sent a single PDF to the printer, Viz has a catalog full of properties that people actually read.