Anime fans are usually skeptical when an anime or manga gets a live-action adaptation goes into production, and they will usually go back and forth with their own feelings toward a project when more information gets revealed.
There are certain occasions, such as with Alita: Battle Angel, that learning more information about the movie only makes fans a bit more suspicious.
Talking about the film at SXSW 2018, director of the film Robert Rodriguez and star Keean Johnson talked about the tone of the film and fans are definitely anxious about it. Why? Star Keean Johnson's words certainly paint the film in tone much different from the original.
Johnson explained that "I think for young kids to see another epic young kid on screen, it's so cool for them to be able to go home and use their imagination in the world of Alita." Epic, young, and "kid" especially aren't words fans would expect to hear when describing a story like Battle Angel Alita, and now they're worried that the film might be trying to reach the wrong audience since the original can be a bit dark and even takes place in a despressing, post-apocalyptic world.
Fans have been having mixed reactions to two other things as well, Alita's eyes. James Cameron and Robert Rodriguez confirmed that they decided to depict Alita's eyes as "anime like" to further push her into uncanny territory, which is also most likely to highlight how different she is to the rest of the world. But while fans have had mixed reactions to Alita: Battle Angel, its original creator Yukito Kishiro is optimistic about its future noting that a Hollywood is like a "dream come true" for him.
For those 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, it was collected into nine volumes and licensed for an English language release by Viz Media.
The series was adapted into a short anime OVA series, and was the only anime adaptation to date. The film, Alita: Battle Angel, had been struck with production delays for several years before finally debuting its first trailer. 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, Jackie Earle Haley, and will hit theaters July 20, 2018.
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