'Alita: Battle Angel' Makes Major Changes to Heroine's Lifelike Features

One of the biggest point of contention fans had with Alita: Battle Angel was the face of the titular Alita, as her huge "anime eyes" gave live-action adaptations a new definition.

But fans have noticed that as production continued, and new trailers were shown, Alita's face has been changed to make it much more human and still captures the spirit of the original intent behind giving her such an odd appearance.

As noted by @JamesMarsano on Twitter, a side-by-side comparison of Alita from the older trailers with the Alita in the newer one reveals major changes to her eyes. The tone of her skin has been altered, giving her more of a human look, and while her eyes are still bigger than a normal human they are subdued compared to the alien look the initial trailers had.

In an earlier interview for the film, Rodriguez explained that Alita's look was an approach he and producer James Cameron had to push her into the uncanny valley in order to emphasize just how much of the "other" she really is. It seems they've found a better balance as the production continued. This is important because although Alita truly indeed is an "other," she should be someone fans can invest in. It's much easier to do so with less visual barriers to entry.

In the manga version of the series, Alita's "other" is represented in her more electronic neck rather than her face. That means the live-action film is going out on a limb for a choice like this. Now fans are just waiting to see how it will be executed.

Originally scheduled to premiere December 21, Alita: Battle Angel is currently slated to premiere February 14, 2019. While fans have had mixed reactions to Alita: Battle Angel's footage so far, its original creator Yukito Kishiro is optimistic about the series' future once noting that a Hollywood adaptation is like a "dream come true" for him.


Alita: Battle Angel will be directed by Robert Rodriguez, produced by James Cameron and Jon Landau, stars Rosa Salazar (as the titular Alita), Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly, Mahershala Ali, Ed Skrein, and Jackie Earle Haley.

Battle Angel Alita (known as GUNNM in Japan) was originally created by Yukito Kishiro for Shueisha's Weekly Business Jump in 1990. The series is set in a post-apocalyptic future and follows Alita, a cyborg who is found in a garbage heap by a doctor and rebuilt. Completely devoid of her memory, all she has to cling to is a legendary cyborg martial art known as Panzer Kunst. With this knowledge, Alita decides to become a bounty hunter. The series has since been licensed for an English language release by Viz Media, and collected into nine volumes.