Haruki Kadokawa was the heir to a major publishing empire. He entered the film business in the mid-1970s with some high-profile features. This was to be his big breakthrough in the international market. He tried to ensure its success by casting some US stars and doing major international promotion (under the international title "Virus"). However, the film was a major flop. Although it may have had some special showings in the US, it did not receive a general release. It was sold directly to pay-TV in an edited 108-minute version.
This film gained some international publicity when a Swedish ship, the MS Lindblad Explorer, transporting a production unit to Antartica for location shooting, struck a submerged reef and almost sank. Passengers were rescued by Chilean navy ships.