Cover Netflix leases Japan's iconic Toho Studios for its content expansion (Photo: Courtesy of Toho Studios)

Ahead of Netflix's Japanese content expansion, the streaming giant has leased the studio birthplace of some of Japan's most iconic films

After announcing that it'll be leasing new spaces in Seoul, Netflix will also be expanding its footprint in Japan in terms of content and production space. The streaming giant is set to lease two soundstages from Tokyo's iconic Toho Studio over the next few years.

The move coincides with Netflix's commitment to expanding Japanese content and projects starting in April 2021, as well as Netflix's overall expansion in Asia.

Toho Studios is home and the birthplace of some of the most important motion pictures that built the foundations of Japanese filmmaking, this includes Akira Kurosawa's Seven Samurai and the Godzilla film series—movies that have played an important part in Japanese cinema and pop culture.

"As someone who built their career working on Japanese films and series, Toho Studio has always been somewhere I dreamt of bringing projects to," says Teiji Ozawa, Netflix's manager of production management of live-actions.

The studio is one of the largest in Japan and welcomes tens of hundreds of artists every year. From April 2021, Netflix will have access to both Stage 7 and Stage 10 of the studio as well as several in-studio facilities located in Setagaya Ward in Tokyo. Two upcoming projects, the live-action adaptation of the popular manga and anime, Yu Yu Hakusho and the Japanese drama series, Sanctuary will make use of the new space for their debuts later this year.

"We’re thrilled that Netflix is joining our roster of amazing talent at Toho Studio. We look forward to continue delivering inspiring entertainment to audiences around the world,” says Mitsuru Shimada, president and CEO of Toho Studio.

The partnership also marks Netflix's bet on stories from Japan, following the success of Alice of Borderland which has already been confirmed for a second season. A planned release of over 15 original live-action and anime titles are also expected this year.

See also: 10 Popular Japanese Dramas To Watch On Netflix In 2021

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