Screen Junkies » Akira http://www.screenjunkies.com Movie Reviews & TV Show Reviews Thu, 18 Sep 2014 20:13:15 +0000 en hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.3.1 Load Your Weapons, ‘Akira’ Gets The Green Light http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/load-your-weapons-akira-gets-the-green-light/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/load-your-weapons-akira-gets-the-green-light/#comments Thu, 20 Oct 2011 13:59:53 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=233106 I hate to be the one to have to pass this news on to you.

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After years of rumors and false starts, Warner Bros. has finally given the official green light to a live-action remake of Akira. Does this news surprise or upset you? Do you even have any nerd-scorn left for the project? Don’t worry. If you’re a fan of the classic anime, there’s enough going on with the remake to obsess about.

First, Jaume Collet-Serra is in the director’s chair with production slated to begin early next year. He’s the man behind House of Wax, The Orphan, and Unknown. That news gets me pretty riled up and I have no emotional connections to Akira. The next update is that,  based on his light-cycle experience, Garrett Hedlund is the favorite to zip around Neo-Manhattan in the lead role. I know how upset this must make you die-hards. Maybe you should go outside and get some air or a bialy. Treat yourself. (Variety)

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‘Akira’ Gets An ‘Unknown’ Director In Collet-Serra http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/clips-tv/akira-gets-an-unknown-director-in-collet-serra/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/tv/clips-tv/akira-gets-an-unknown-director-in-collet-serra/#comments Thu, 14 Jul 2011 20:35:10 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=220321 Will Collet-Serra have what it takes to whitewash this recent classic?

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The Akira news factory keeps plugging along, this time with news that, after the departure of Albert Hughes, directing duties will be taken over by Jaume Collet-Serra, the director of both Unknown and Orphan. It’s a choice that indicates that they might not want to pump as much money into the project as was originally thought, as Collet-Serra has been able to demonstrate strong returns on nominal budgets, with Unknown collecting over $130 million on a budget of only about $30 million. The budget for Akira is rumored to be in the $90 million range, a big step up for Collet-Serra, but not in the ballpark of many other tentpole releases.

The Variety story also mentions offhand that the film will be set in “New Manhattan,” a move that will a) explain the presence of all the white movie stars, while also b) frustrating fans of the source material. Not a huge surprise, given the casting rumors that had been circulating.

The choice doesn’t shed too much light on the constantly-shifting project, but getting a director on board might help the producers from Appian Way start garnering cast members to turn “New Manhattan” into “White Tokyo.”

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Albert Hughes Splits From ‘Akira’, But Sticks With Warner Bros http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/albert-hughes-splits-from-akira-but-sticks-with-warner-bros/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/albert-hughes-splits-from-akira-but-sticks-with-warner-bros/#comments Thu, 26 May 2011 19:53:23 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=213747 It's looks like 'Menace II Society' and 'Akira' won't have the same director after all.

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It’s been a rough couple of weeks for the Akira project. First, they lost Keanu Reeves after early talks, and now, it seems they’ve lost the director as well. Deadline is reporting that Albert Hughes has left the project over creative differences with Warner Bros. The details of exactly what those creative differences were aren’t clear at this time, however.

Despite these setbacks, the film is still being fasttracked, so expect the studio to find another helmer as soon as possible. Also expect the studio to match Hughes to another project in short order. Sounds like both the studio and director bounce back nicely, but what of the film?

Not much is known about the ever-evolving Akira, as producers changed both the direction of the film and the budget, opting to go with Reeves instead of a younger, less-proven star. While the script may be firm, it would appear that every other aspect of the project is back to square one. Not exactly the direction you want to be traveling in on a fasttracked production.

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Keanu Walks Away From ‘Akira’, Possibly To Eat A Sandwich Alone On A Bench http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/keanu-walks-away-from-akira-possibly-to-eat-a-sandwich-alone-on-a-bench/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/keanu-walks-away-from-akira-possibly-to-eat-a-sandwich-alone-on-a-bench/#comments Tue, 17 May 2011 20:17:03 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=212513 The greatest Asian actor of his generation steps away from the project, honorably.

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Keanu Reeves has decided that he doesn’t need Akira in his life, having passed on the project. While he seemed like an inspired choice to play the gang leader Kaneda, he was two decades older than some of the other candidates. That said, the decision to leave was Reeves’, so producers must have been willing to overlook the age discrepancy for his box-office draw and blockbuster movie experience.

Expect the casting rumors to circulate quickly for this project, as it has the attention of not only the US, but the world on the venerable property. Two months ago, the shortlist consisted of Robert Pattinson, Andrew Garfield, and James McAvoy, so their names are likely to pop back up in the discussion.

Warner Bros. has insisted that Keanu’s decision hasn’t sidetracked production, as it’s in development and has yet to be greenlit. So don’t worry about this event offsetting progress on the film – they haven’t made any yet. Way to cover your ass, WB. (Coming Soon)

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Keanu Reeves In Talks To Lead An Asian Gang In ‘Akira’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/keanu-reeves-in-talks-to-lead-an-asian-gang-in-akira/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/keanu-reeves-in-talks-to-lead-an-asian-gang-in-akira/#comments Fri, 06 May 2011 18:55:05 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=210969 He's already got a leg up on the other candidates. He knows kung-fu.

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Akira appears to be narrowing its search for a lead, and it looks like that role might skew a little older than originally thought, with Keanu Reeves in discussions to star as Kaneda, the gang leader. He is in talks with Warner Bros. after the studio had contemplated youngsters such as James Franco, (shudder) Robert Pattinson, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, and Michael Fassbender.

While the talks aren’t far along, Reeves has demonstrated he can carry a big-budget franchise with The Matrix trilogy, so his involvement could give the film weight enough to find another A-lister for the role of Tetsuo, Kaneda’s best friend. Keanu is now wrapping up the samurai film 47 Ronin, so perhaps the studio wanted to catch him while he was still in a Japanese state of mind. Because once those sword skills fade, they’re gone for good. (THR)

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‘Akira’ Casting Shortlist: Pattinson, Garfield, No One Asian http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/akira-casting-shortlist-pattinson-garfield-no-one-asian/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/akira-casting-shortlist-pattinson-garfield-no-one-asian/#comments Tue, 22 Mar 2011 06:07:25 +0000 Geoffrey Golden http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=202894 Andrew Garfield, James McAvoy and Robert Pattinson are all up for the lead role of Tetsuo. If the audition requires shirtlessness, Pattinson's got the experience edge.

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Akira is considered one on the most important works in all of mangadom and animeland. It’s a Japanese classic, which is why it must be written by the Harry Potter screenwriter and star a franchise-carrying white dude. “Must… scrub… all… Japanese… aspects… away…,” said a hard-at-work Warner Bros. They missed a spot, though – all the characters still have names like Tetsuo and Kaneda. Why not Tony and Kyle? Now those are first names I can relate to.

Andrew Garfield, James McAvoy and Robert Pattinson have been given the current draft of Akira, re-written by Steve Kloves. They’re all up for the lead role of Tetsuo. If the audition requires shirtlessness, Pattinson’s got the experience edge. Meanwhile, for the role of Kaneda, Chris Pine, Justin Timberlake, Garrett Hedlund, Michael Fassbender and Joaquin Phoenix are under consideration.

The story takes place in the very distant future – 2019 – where a bike gang leader must save his buddy from becoming the victim of a medical experiment. Warner Bros. and director Albert Hughes (From Hell) are excited about the new draft, though probably Albert’s co-director brother Allen is not, since he’s been left out of the picture. Or maybe he too became the victim of a medical experiment somewhere in Neo-Tokyo. (Deadline)

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NERD ALERT: ‘Harry Potter’ Screenwriter Tackling Live-Action ‘Akira’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/nerd-alert-harry-potter-screenwriter-tackling-live-action-akira/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/nerd-alert-harry-potter-screenwriter-tackling-live-action-akira/#comments Fri, 18 Feb 2011 18:36:56 +0000 Joseph Gibson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=28168 The live-action 'Akira' will have a dash of Kloves in it.

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The popular anime Akira has long been considered “the anime” by people who are knowledgeable about such things. I myself was too busy having sex and playing sports (read: reading comic books) to be interested in anime, but even I have heard of Akira, which is “set in a metropolis that was rebuilt after being destroyed decades earlier by Akira, a child with immense psychic powers.” Psychic powers, future Japan…I admit, this sounds pretty cool.

Anyway, Steve Kloves, who wrote all but one of the Harry Potter movies, has been hired to polish the script by Albert Torres. We’ll see if this means the studio (Warner Brothers) plans to market Akira to the Harry Potter crowd, probably by putting advertisements in all of my comic books and computer games or something. Nerds. (via Variety)

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Franco Reportedly To Star In ‘Akira’ Adaptation. After That, Perhaps A Nap? http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/james-franco-talks-akira-manga-adaptation-franco-so-very-tired/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/james-franco-talks-akira-manga-adaptation-franco-so-very-tired/#comments Fri, 11 Feb 2011 22:09:05 +0000 Penn Collins http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=26493 It's been reported by JustJared that James Franco has been offered the lead role of Kaneda in the feature adaptation of Akira.

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It’s reported by JustJared that James Franco has been offered the lead role of Kaneda in the feature adaptation of Akira, the legendary manga (Japanese comic book) that was adapted in 1988 in anime form. Apparently James Franco is not content only siphoning off all source material from the United States, so he’s gone international with his bad self.

The Hollywood Akira has a powerful writing team behind it in Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, the scribes behind Iron Man and Cowboys and Aliens, and a decidedly less-powerful director behind it in Albert Hughes, 50% of the Hughe brothers team that brought us Dead Presidents, From Hell, and The Book of Eli. It’s being produced by Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way, which seems to have channeled its inner Franco and gotten involved with most of the projects out there these days. An interesting team behind what will surely be a very high-profile movie once it gets going.

I can’t muster up any more jokes about James Franco’s ubiquity in every facet of entertainment, so I’m just going to give you a handy list of irons he has in the fire right now. Feel free to print it and put it in your wallet. If you should run into Franco or his agent, you have conversation fodder for days, if not weeks.

This is just stuff we’ve covered. This list will have been rendered almost completely obsolete by the time you finish reading it.

I’m sure in his mind, Franco is kicking around spec scripts for a Rocky reboot, a Heat prequel, and possibly executing Jason Segel to become the new face of the Muppets franchise going forward.

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Zac Efron And Morgan Freeman Frontrunners To Be Miscast In ‘Akira’ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/zac-efron-and-morgan-freeman-frontrunners-to-be-miscast-in-akira/ http://www.screenjunkies.com/movies/movie-news/zac-efron-and-morgan-freeman-frontrunners-to-be-miscast-in-akira/#comments Mon, 08 Nov 2010 22:37:18 +0000 Wookie Johnson http://www.screenjunkies.com/?p=7232 The news that Zac Efron has been offered the lead in the Hughes Brothers adaptation of Akira is single-handedly responsible for the stock of asthma medicine shooting through the roof. That is to say, chubby basement dwellers are PISSED.

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The news that Zac Efron has been offered the lead in the Hughe Brothers adaptation of Akira is single-handedly responsible for the stock of asthma medicine shooting through the roof. That is to say, chubby basement dwellers are PISSED. But when you stop and think about it, he’ll make perfect sense in the role. I’ve never seen a person who looks more like they leapt from the pages of anime in my life. I’d be shocked if a gigantic sweat drop didn’t bead on his forehead when he’s feeling trepidatious.

That said, more casting was announced that didn’t make much sense. It was revealed today that Morgan Freeman is circling the role of the Colonel. Which makes so so so little sense. That role is Chuck Liddell’s for the taking. That would be like offering Sean Connery Professor X, or not offering Morgan Freeman Nelson Mandela. At any rate, we’re still very early in the casting process so it’s likely these plans will change in favor of those that make some g.d. sense. (via /Film and Bloody Disgusting)

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