The live action Akira has been rumored for a long, long time. Going through a number of incarnations for nearly a decade, it was only until recently that the animated adaptation seemed to be gaining some steam. With the backing of director Taika Waiti, famous in part thanks to his directorial talents on both What We Do In The Shadows and Thor: Ragnarok, the movie seems to have finally hammered down a release date. So when can fans expect to see this latest adaptation?
May 21st 2021 is when the feature film will tentatively hit theaters as reported by the Hollywood Reporter. While not much is known regarding the casting of the film or how closely it will be to the original source material of the anime and the manga, filming is set to begin this July. Waititi may be helming the director's chair for this one, but he will also be co-writing the script with Michael Golamco who has an upcoming feature planned for a Netflix release with Always Be My Maybe.
While films such as Alita: Battle Angel and Pokemon: Detective Pikachu have brought anime and manga series to the real world, fans have been skeptical regarding the proposed Akira adaptation. The movie itself has been in "development hell" with numerous creative teams attempting to bring this story to life. Leonardo DiCaprio has been involved with the project for some time and is set to produce the movie under Warner Bros Pictures.
After the anime adaptation of Ghost In The Shell with Scarlett Johansson, fans were adamant about studios doing away with "white washing" such properties. Taika Waititi has specifically stated that he is looking to cast asian actors in the roles of Akira, so expect Kaneda and Tetsuo to be brought to life similar to how they appear in both the anime and the manga.
Are you excited for this upcoming anime adaptation of this cyber-punk future? Do you feel that Taika Waititi is up to the challenge of adapting this beloved franchise? Let us know in the comments or feel free to hit me up directly on Twitter @EVComedy to talk all things comics and anime.
Originally created by Katsuhiro Otomo for Kodansha's Young Magazine in 1982, Akira later inspired the equally as prolific 1988 animated film, which Otomo himself directed. The story is set in a dystopian world following the bleak close of World War III. A gang leader known as Kaneda finds himself embroiled in a massive government operation when his best friend begins exhibiting powerful telekinetic gifts. To save his friend, Kaneda must get to the bottom of Neo Tokyo’s espers, but the lead quickly learns he is way in over his head.