Japan's WOWOW Boards Michael Mann's 'Tokyo Vice' Series

Michael Mann
VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images

Michael Mann

The country's leading premium pay TV broadcaster is taking local rights and will co-produce the show with HBO Max and Endeavor Content.

Japan's leading pay TV company WOWOW is boarding Michael Mann's crime series Tokyo Vice, taking all local rights and co-producing the show with HBO Max and Endeavor Content.

Created and written by Tony-winning playwright J.T. Rogers the series is loosely inspired by American journalist Jake Adelstein’s 2009 memoir, Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan, which chronicles his time spent covering organized crime for the Yomiuri Shimbun, one of Japan’s largest newspapers. Adelstein was the first Westerner to work the crime beat for the paper and spent 12 years there.

Tokyo Vice stars Ansel Elgort as an American journalist, Ken Watanabe as a Tokyo police detective and Rinko Kikuchi as a Japanese journalist.

Mann is directing the 10-episode series pilot and will serve as an executive producer. John Lesher, Emily Gerson Saines, Alan Poul, Jake Adelstein, Destin Daniel Cretton, Brad Caleb Kane, Kayo Washio, as well as stars Watanabe and Elgort, are executive producing.

The series began shooting on location in Japan in early March before it was paused briefly following a surge of COVID-19 cases in the country. Shooting resumes again this week.

Endeavor Content is serving as the studio and handling global distribution. Tokyo Vice will stream exclusively on HBO Max in the U.S.