Entertainment News

Ansel Elgort to star in drama series based on memoir 'Tokyo Vice'

by Rachael Merritt

STAFF WRITER

WarnerMedia’s production of “Tokyo Vice” is set to bring an adaption of Jake Adelstein’s journalistic investigations into Japan’s criminal underworld to its streaming service.

The 10-episode series will star Ansel Elgort as Adelstein, who is a columnist for The Japan Times, as 25-year-old Elgort makes his television debut after a string of successful feature films that includes “Baby Driver,” “The Fault in Our Stars” and the “Divergent” franchise.

“Tokyo Vice” will be based on Adelstein’s 2009 memoir, “Tokyo Vice: An American Reporter on the Police Beat in Japan,” which chronicles his experience investigating the yakuza at the Yomiuri Shimbun newspaper.

According to entertainment news site Variety, Elgort will also act as executive producer alongside Emily Gerson Saines and Josh Lesher.

The show will be written and adapted by Tony Award-winning playwright J.T. Rogers (“Oslo”), and Destin Daniel Cretton (“Short Term 12”) will direct.

An unsuccessfully produced film adaption of “Tokyo Vice” was announced in 2013 and scheduled for production in mid-2014, with British actor Daniel Radcliffe from “Harry Potter” in the role of Adelstein.

In light of the lasting casting choice, Adelstein tweeted “My only comment: Mr. Elgort is a great guy and @stagewriter (J.T. Rogers) is brilliant. A good friend.”

Adelstein has been a regular contributor to The Japan Times since 2012, continuing to report on issues of crime, law and social justice in Japan via his The Dark Side of the Rising Sun column.

“Tokyo Vice” is the second official series from WarnerMedia, which has announced plans to grow its streaming service by incorporating HBO and Cinemax into its package in an attempt to gain a competitive edge in the lucrative streaming market.