Sanrio has some big plans for the 45-year-old Hello Kitty it seems. For the first time in the history of the brand it has granted film rights outside of Japan. The rights went to Warner Bros. New Line Cinema division, and now we just need to wait. The new film will be co-produced with FlynnPictureCo.
Beyond Hello Kitty, the new agreement also covers other Sanrio characters like My Melody, Little Twin Stars, Gudetama, and more.
“I am extremely pleased that Hello Kitty and other popular Sanrio characters will be making their Hollywood debut,” said Sanrio founder, President, and CEO Shintaro Tsuji. “Hello Kitty has long been a symbol of friendship and we hope this film will only serve to grow that circle of friendship around the world.”
Richard Brener, President and Chief Creative Officer, and Carolyn Blackwood, President and Chief Content Officer, New Line Cinema, added in a joint statement, “We are thrilled to partner with Sanrio and FlynnPictureCo. on developing a film based on this treasured icon. It’s a rare privilege to have the opportunity to explore the possibilities of such timeless IP. Hello Kitty and her friends have been part of our shared culture for decades, and we look forward to exploring where her newest adventure will take her.”
“Hello Kitty has been one of the most beloved characters around the world for the last forty-plus years,” added Beau Flynn, CEO, FlynnPictureCo. “We’re incredibly honored that President Tsuji has entrusted us with the responsibility of bringing her story to the big screen globally for the first time ever, and it’s a dream that we get to do this with our long-term partners at New Line and Warner Bros. With the positive and family-oriented values that Hello Kitty and Sanrio embody, there has never been a better time than now to share her message with the world!”
Started in 1974, Hello Kitty has grown into a global brand that has more products than you can possibly imagine. With products released every year in 130 countries, the famous character can pop up just about anywhere you go.
Will it translate well into a movie? We’ll just have to see. A lot of it will depend on what approach is taken, but knowing how Sanrio safeguards Kitty, it will probably be a pretty straightforward tale of friendship.
And so, so cute.