BlockStudios announces original content deals with famed anime and film directors, Kazuto Nakazawa and Takashi Shimizu following rebrand
- BlockStudios, formerly CryptoAnime, the world’s first ever anime crypto site, announces exclusive deals for original content with Kill Bill: Volume 1 anime director Kazuto Nakazawa and horror director Takashi Shimizu known for The Grudge.
- The content deals are a world first for anime content on a blockchain platform with known anime and film directors.
SINGAPORE, 26 June 2018 — BlockPunk today announced that its anime crypto site CryptoAnime will rebrand as BlockStudios to reflect its long-term vision as a blockchain entertainment studio for creators and fans.
With the rebrand, BlockStudios has also signed exclusive original content deals from top Japanese filmmakers Kazuto Nakazawa and Takashi Shimizu known for their work on Kill Bill: Volume 1 and The Grudge respectively.
BlockPunk, based in Singapore, set out to build the world’s first decentralized marketplace for branded anime content and the team has experience licensing, financing, and producing hundreds of Hollywood and anime titles at companies like Netflix and Warner Bros.
Julian Lai-Hung, CEO and Co-founder of BlockPunk, former head of anime at Netflix, speaking on the rebranding and the new original content deals, said “BlockPunk’s creation of an ecosystem based on blockchain technology comes at a crucial time where a small number of centralized Silicon Valley platforms are taking over Hollywood. The fixed fee deals with no upside, lack of viewing data, and limited merchandising opportunities mean independent creators need more options to grow their business. With BlockStudios, creators are empowered to fund, merchandise and stream their content directly to fans — a drastic alternative to the streaming oligarchs.”
Julian added, “We are absolutely thrilled that renowned Japanese filmmakers Kazuto Nakazawa and Takashi Shimizu, are leading the way with the first ever original content deals for anime on the blockchain by partnering with BlockStudios. These are clear signs for the demand for an alternative and decentralised solution for content.”
Takashi Shimizu said: “I love drawing. Ever since I was a child I would draw and imagine characters floating in my mind. It’s my dream to bring this to life as an animated movie, a picture book and more! If you could fall in love with some of my characters that would make me very happy. I’m fascinated by Blockchain and how it can bring this to a new audience around the world.”
BlockPunk launched BlockStudios (formerly CryptoAnime) in April 2018 and subsequently, in May, formed a strategic partnership with, and received investment from DLE Capital, the VC arm of Tokyo Stock Exchange listed entertainment studio DLE to support its efforts in Japan.
About Kazuto Nakazawa
Born in 1968, Nakazawa-san is an animator, illustrator and character designer. Nakazawa-san was the director of the famous animation sequence in Quentin Tarantino’s movie “Kill Bill” (2003) His original production of “ASIENCE ~ hair is a woman’s life” won the top prize at the London International Advertising Awards. His Netflix Original anime series “B: The Beginning” has been renewed by the streamer for a second season. Nakazawa-san works as an original writer, creator and an animation director.
About Takashi Shimizu
Born in 1972, Shimizu-san majored in Theater acting at university, where he learnt the art of script-writing from Mr. Toshiro Ishido a master of the craft. He created a 3-minute home-made short movie that caught the eye of film directors Kiyoshi Kurosawa and Hiroshi Takahashi. With their recommendations he became a film director. He directed “JU-ON” series of movies that originated from a collection of his own short films. JU-ON was subsequently remade in Hollywood as “The Grudge” also directed by Shimizu-san. With The Grudge’s success he became the first Japanese director to record a №1 box office hit in the North American market. He deals with various genres such as comedy (“The Great Horror Family”), fantasy (“Kiki’s delivery service” the live-action version), and mystery (“SOIL”) through a lens of horror.
He has always pushed the boundaries of technology innovation such as 3D and 4DX movies (“The Shock Labyrinth”, “Tormented”, “A Rain Woman”), and also produces other directors both in Japan and abroad. (Eg. “Rigor Mortis” “Resident Evil: Vendetta”) Recent works include “The Blue Hearts / Boy’s song” “Innocent Curse”. A science movie “The man from 9 dimensions” on the theme of superstring theory is now playing in 3D dome theater in Japan at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, with numerous nominations for domestic and international awards.
BlockPunk is a Blockchain entertainment studio incubated at EF and SGinnovate in Singapore. BlockPunk operates the BlockStudios (formerly CryptoAnime) marketplace for Japanese anime collectibles and develops solutions for filmmakers and creators to decentralize their business. BlockPunk was co-founded by Julian Lai-Hung (CEO, former head of anime at Netflix and head of content for Japan, ex-VP International Digital Distribution at Warner Bros. Serial entrepreneur and Wharton MBA) and Jatin Shah (CTO, expert in distributed systems with a PhD in Computer Science from Yale and BTech from Indian Institute of Technology. Former product lead at Linkedin pre-IPO. Product leadership positions at Yahoo, InMobi, Quikr)
About DLE Capital
DLE Capital is a 100% wholly owned subsidiary of Tokyo Stock Exchange listed DLE Inc. established in March 2018 to invest in emerging technologies with the potential for synergy with DLE and the entertainment industry. As a key investment theme, DLE Capital believes that Blockchain technology has the disruptive potential to create entirely new markets and business models within the entertainment industry.
Mutant Communications for BlockPunk:
Matthew de Bakker, Matthew@mutant.com.sg
Ivan Tan, Ivan@mutant.com.sg
The BlockStudios Ecosystem
1. Decentralized ecosystem offers a new win-win paradigm, less impact from middlemen
2. Self-governing community of creators and fans with both sides incentivized
3. Instant global payments with non-hackable record of ownership and rights