<i>Anacondas</i> director helming Tekken movie

Dwight Little set to squeeze the life out of Namco Bandai's long-running fighting franchise, production begins in February.

SIDEBAR: The long-awaited Tekken film adaptation appears to be on track once again, as Hollywood trade magazine Variety is reporting that the project has a director and a production start date. Helming the film will be Dwight Little, director of Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid, Steven Seagal's Marked for Death, and Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home. In recent years, Little has focused on TV work, with stints on popular Fox shows like 24, Prison Break, and Bones. Production is scheduled to begin February 4 in Shreveport, Louisiana.

"The film plays out as a science fiction story set in the near future, about a rebel who rises up against the Tekken Corp. to seize freedom for his people," Little told the magazine. "It's a gladiator story, but the video game has a complicated enough storyline that it provides the template for a martial arts spectacular."

The Tekken film has been in the works since 2002, when production company Crystal Sky Pictures picked up the rights to it for a reported $60 million. After lying dormant in recent years, the project resurfaced in October when a teaser poster hit the Web.

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