Alita: Battle Angel will be the next anime adaptation to hit Hollywood, and its team is teasing new details about the film this month. Thanks to a brand-new magazine issue, new photos of several Alita villains have gone live, and the cyborgs look all sorts of deadly.
Recently, Empire shared its exclusive photos with fans online, and the stills hone in on two familiar faces. In one, Zapan (Ed Skrein) is shown in all his tech-friendly glory, and he is joined by another cyborg named Grewishka (Jackie Earle Haley).
According to Empire, the design for Zapan stands as James Cameron’s favorite of the film. The legendary director has put years of work into Alita, and his role as producer should ensure its world-building goes smoothly. Paired with director Robert Rodriguez, the creators on Alita have a rather impressive resume shared between them, and it will hopefully bring justice to the original series.
While the Zapan still sees the cyborg at odds with the film’s heroine, Grewishka is another story entirely. The hulking cyborg looks far more robot than human, and the actor tasked with bringing Grewishka to life promises the villain is a vetted killing machine.
“He’s got brute strength, but he’s also empowered by these cyber-doctors,” Haley explained. “One of his skills is that he’s got these talon-like fingers that can shoot across the room, pierce just about anything and snap back just as fast.”
For fans of the original Alita series, these cyborgs should be familiar to them. Zapan is lifted straight from the manga, but Grewishka is a bit harder to pin down. The character actually hails from the Battle Angel Alita OVA and combines attributes of two manga baddies named Makaku and Kinuba. The huge cyborg is known for his love of brains, and Grewishka finds himself at odds with Alita after the pair cross paths.
If you're unfamiliar with Battle Angel Alita (GUNNM in Japan), the series was originally created by Yukito Kishiro. 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. Originally published in Shueisha's Weekly Business Jump in 1990, the manga was collected into nine volumes and licensed for an English language release by Viz Media.
So, what do you think of these new stills? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to talk all things comics and anime! Alita: Battle Angel opens in theaters on February 14, 2019.