EXCLUSIVE: One of the industry’s top deal makers, Climan has been named CEO of a new enterprise, All Nippon Entertainment Works (ANEW), that vows to drive the most ambitious effort yet to spread Japan’s entertainment to English-speaking audiences. “Japan has long been a cultural epicenter of the world’s most creative storytelling,” Climan says. ANEW will be “full partners with the underlying rights holders” to develop content including films, books, toys, animation, and Manga. The venture says that it will adapt, co-develop and produce Japanese content “in partnership with established Hollywood studios and world-class filmmakers.” It has an initial capitalization of $80M from the Innovation Network Corporation of Japan (INCJ), a public-private partnership created in 2009 that’s supervised by the government and is supported by entertainment powers including Dentsu, Fuji, Mitsubishi, and Sega. INCJ chief Kimikazu Noumi says that Climan’s “extensive experience in working with world-class filmmakers and creative properties” will enable ANEW to become “the gateway to the best creators and creative properties in Japan.” Climan will split his time between ANEW’s headquarters in Tokyo as well as its U.S. headquarters in Hollywood. ANEW’s COO is Kenny Kurokawa, a former exec at Sony and several Japanese movie production companies who’s based in Tokyo.
For nearly a decade in the late 1980s and early 1990s Climan helped to build CAA as a member of the senior management team. He moved to Universal Studios in 1995 and became president of worldwide business development. In 1999 he created Entertainment Media Ventures, an investment and advisory firm that specializes in digital media. Most recently he was founding CEO of 3ality Digital, which developed and commercialized 3D technology and content.