Watch For Gaijin-as-Yakuza Movie “The Outsider” from Warner Bros.

The premise is amazing: After World War II, an American prisoner of war stays behind in Japanand slowly makes his way up in the ranks of the Japanese yakuza. This is the movie idea currently in being scripted at Warner Bros. by a fellow named Andrew Baldwin. No, not the reality TV personality. The idea for “The Outsider” was conceived by John Linson, who produces the FX show “Sons of Anarchy” with his father Art. Apparently, Warner Bros. loved the idea so much that the studio bought the movie based solely on the way the premise was pitched. Some entertainment trade papers are already describing the movie idea as a criminal version of “The Last Samurai”, but to us it sounds a bit more original than that. We’ve seen crime dramas before where Americans get entangled in criminal activity in Japan. Robert Mitchum in Sydney Pollack’s “The Yakuza” and Scott Glenn in John Frankenheimer’s “The Challenge” both come to mind. But in these films the Americans are definitely on the outside trying to look into a seemingly impenetrable organization or set of codes. The idea for this movie sounds like it turns the typical East-meets-West senarios in crime drama on their head. At the moment, the movie has not even been cast. But we think Edward Norton might be a good choice for the lead, since he actually does speak some Japanese. (Reuters – American Yakuza at Warner Bros.) Moviehole also has a short piece about this upcoming film.