Akira Finally Gets Green Light

I’ve lost track of the number of Akira news articles I’ve written in the last year. The Hollywood live action adaptation has been through so many changes in writers, directors and actors that it’s hard to know where it all stands.

Well, now the dust is starting to settle and Tron Legacy star Garrett Hedlund is the main contender for the lead Tetsuo, his experience with futuristic motorcycles probably giving him an edge. Offers are still out to Gary Oldman, Helena Bonham Carter and apparently Keira Knightley (Akeira?!).

That’s far from confirmed though and there’s no word on who else might be cast. Other discarded rumours include Robert Pattinson, Andrew Garfield, James McAvoy, Brad Pitt, Ryan Gosling, James Franco, Zac Efron and Keanu Reeves – so nearly everyone then. Michael Fassbender, Chris Pine, Justin Timberlake and Joaquin Phoenix were all in the frame at one point for Tetsuo’s best friend Kaneda.

For those who don’t know, Akira is a seminal 1990 Anime which sees a gang leader try to cope when his best friend Kaneda is used as an experiment. Cue massive psychokinetic Neo-Tokyo destruction, impossible large mutants and mass confusion.

Unknown director Jaume Collett-Sera is still on for directing duties (after Book Of Eli director Albert Hughes dropped out). The budget has been pared down to a more manageable $90million from the sprawling $300million which was already envisaged.

The script’s had a load of contributions from the likes of Hawk Otsby and Mark Fergus (Children Of Men, Iron Man) with the latest revision by Harry Potter veteran Steve Kloves.

While we’re waiting for that, enjoy the trailer for the orginal anime: