Iron Man Screenwriters Working on Akira Movie

Published 4 years ago by

akira Iron Man Screenwriters Working on Akira Movie

Collider has exclusively broken the news that the rumored-dead Akira movie is in fact alive and well over at Warner Bros.

The website’s inside source claims that two screenwriters are currently at work on Akira, Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby, who are credited with doing a lot of initial script work for Iron Man (though that script went through several on-set rewrites). The pair also did the pen-work for the excellent Children of Men and are working on the script for the upcoming Cowboys and Aliens, which could re-unite them with Iron Man director Jon Favreau and star Robert Downey Jr.

So what is being planned for the Akira movie and how closely will it resemble Katsuhiro Otomo’s 1988 anime classic? Keep reading to the learn the answer.

The Akira anime was set in “Neo-Tokyo” of 2019, so first order of business for an American live-action remake is to transport the story to the U.S. of A. Welcome to “New Manhattan.” Also important to note: the iconic electro-magnetic cycle ridden by main character Kaneda in the original anime (see header above) will also appear in the live-action version. Beyond that, details of the film are still pretty vague at this early stage.

If you haven’t seen the Akira anime, it tells the tale of a futuristic motorcycle gang whose youngest member, Tetsuo, winds up in a government lab after a bad bike accident. When the g-men’s tests unlock massive psychic energies in Tetsuo, the young boy sets out to wreak vengeance on those who mistreated him, even as his new powers spiral grossly out of control.

According to Collider’s sources, if the current draft of the script gets the necessary stamp of approval, the Akira movie could go into production as soon as next year, aimed for a 2011 release date. The film has long been gestating over at WB, with Leonardo Dicaprio’s Appian Way production company also working to develop the project. We recently reported that Gary Whitta (The Book Of Eli) was rumored to have turned in a draft of Akira, but I guess that didn’t pan out.

What do you think – are you betting that a live-action version of Akira finally makes it into theaters? Or is this a project you don’t want to see come to fruition?

Sources: Collider & Slash Film

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28 Comments

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  1. I wouldn’t mind seeing a live action Akira, but Hollywood is just gonna Americanize(Bastardize) it. And heres what you could expect from it:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jafd97yJFOI

    I would much rather a Japanese Studio(or director) make this film. Because they know how to make live action adaptations of anime good. Only good one I’ve seen from Hollywood is “Aeon Flux”.

  2. It could turn oiut well given the screenwriters involved .
    We shall see.

  3. I’ve been waiting a very long time for a live action AKIRA, but it scares the hell out of me. I’d bet that the american studios will ruin the thing, like so much else. Alas, it is the way of things.

    I ordered a copy of the soundtrack on CD a couple of years after the movie came out. The thing cost $38.00 bucks!!! but it was worth it, Kaneda is the best track, that and Doll’s polyphony.

    Favorite scene: of course, Tetsuo marching through Neo-tokyo and his finale duel with Kaneda. Tetsuo loses an arm but just builds another. Freakin’ awesome!

  4. So… does this mean that it would actually make some sense unlike the anime?? LOL

  5. We know what happens when anime goes live action, Dragonball Evolution…… Plus you kinda have to figure they are going to take out a huge chunk of blood and guts from the movie. Either way I’m 50/50 on the idea.

  6. @Ken
    LOL.

    That’s what I was thinking. I’ve watched it 10 times … love it … but still have no REAL idea what the heck is going on.

    If the writers make sense out of this they should get a star on the Hollywood walk of fame or something.

  7. @INK

    EXACTLY! Even fans don’t have a clue what’s going on, do you know why? Because neither did the writers and animators!! They just felt that there’s no way a Jap Anime movie can be without some crazy big monster with tentacles that go after girls in school girl uniforms, so they just added one in at the end for no apparent reason.

    @Matt Keith

    But you know, in the case of most anime, “bastardizing” it might make it better because it’s such ridiculous crap to begin with…

    Just my opinion though, I know plenty of people love anime, I personally don’t understand why, they are all so similar… I’ve seen A LOT of anime since most of my friends are on the “OMG ANIME IS SOOO KOOOOOLL” bandwagon, and to me, I can’t tell one from the other…

  8. Wait, is it my work computer blocking it or not loading crap correctly? Or did the “Latest Comments” thing on the bottom disappear??

  9. @INK & Ken J:.

    I’ll never get why people don’t understand the plot to AKIRA. It’s so simple. Japanese youth start gaining telepathic powers as the result of human evolution. The military tries to harness this power while a biker gaming member tries to save his friend from it. That’s it.

  10. LMAO, it all makes so much sense now!! :-D

  11. The Anime was awesome, but it’s not Live Action material. Plus, it’s pretty much a classic now.

  12. @ Ryan M

    Yes it’s that simple,but the story is way more involved than that,and as much as I absolutely love the anime,it can’t even hold a candle to the actual manga that it’s based off of.The comics are absolutely the greatest story that I’ve ever read in my life,and the anime doesn’t even capture half of what was really going on in the story.

    I would strongly urge anyone who is a fan of the anime to run out the door right now and start getting the reissued books from Dark Horse Comics,they are brilliant.

    As far as making this into a live action movie:message to Hollywood,LEAVE AKIRA THE HELL ALONE!!!! IT’S OUT OF YOUR LEAGUE!!!

    I wouldn’t mind seeing a movie of Katsuhiro Otomo’s story Domu,though.That could be good.

  13. I’ve watched Anime on and off for decades now and “Akira” has never touched me in any way. The story wasn’t confusing or unintelligible it seemed uninvolving to me. I was more satisfied with “Spriggin,” “Jin Roh,” or “Black Jack,” and it can’t hold a candle to “Ghost In The Shell.” Even a series like “Planetes” whose underlying story is about space junk retrieval, is more involving.

    One of the things that is “Akira’s” strength, namely the animation, won’t help it as live action. Another disadvantage is in keeping with the tone of the original, it will be an “R” rated movie, unless toned down. That would surely cause you to lose the hardcore fanbase.

    WB would be better off, in my opinion, to adapt “Planetes” to the screen before “Akira.”

  14. @ the old man

    So you don’t like Akira,calling it uninvolving,but you like Ghost In The Shell?

    Sorry,but pretty much everything that I’ve seen of Masamune Shiro is pure crap and littered with convoluted storylines.

    All I can say is read the manga and you’ll feel differently.

  15. No; I think your misinterpreting what I said. Since it was brought up as a movie and judging by the Anime and in that context it is uninvolving to me. That has nothing to do with the the Manga’s story. Both of the stories are imposing, they both had formed committee’s to bring the stories to the screen, however the convoluted “Ghost In The Shell” has proven to be far more adaptable.

    When “Akira” first came to the U.S. both Lucas and Spielberg deemed it unmarketable! No doubt because, even the central conflict in “Akira” is dull! I really couldn’t identify with any of the characters. It has fought an uphill battle to gain recognition in the film community. The rights to the video passed around over the course of 5 years from its 1988 release being bought and sold a number of times, despite its popularity in the Anime community. Sounds like a dog without a home, maybe it should have been named lucky?

    “Ghost In The Shell’s” success has certainly eclipsed “Akira’s.” It’s been far more adaptable, brought to screens 5 times, where despite “Akira” encompassing six large volumes of story has been brought to any U.S. screen once. “Akira” has been in film development hell now for a number of years, and is now on at least its third go around. That estimated 300 Million price tag probably had something to do with it! I also find it funny that a live action “Death Note,” talk about convoluted, was brought to the screen, but in 21 years no Japanese studio has brought the highly acclaimed “Akira” to the live action screen.

    As far as convolution is concerned, well You know some people just want bread and circuses and some want more than that. I’m sorry that it offends you that I belong to the latter…

  16. Don’t like the idea and simply because Akira is a classic that shouldn’t be messed with and would most likely get ruined instead. I don’t care if it’s an anime. Movies like The Godfather shouldn’t be remade and neither should Akira… then again this is Hollywood so no surprise there. I mean Enter the Dragon is getting remade, so classic movies watch out!

  17. @PG
    When you said they were remaking Enter the Dragon, a “what the..!” kept ringing in my wittle mind. I looked it up and found they will be calling it “Awaken the Dragon” and it will be about an American FBI agent looking for an outlaw Shaolin monk. Whatever.

    I liked Akira but I agree that translating it to live-action is going to be extremely difficult. Also, I didn’t find Akira to be rewatchable like “Ninja Scroll”. I am curious how they would pull this off.

  18. I´m will give this a chance. For me the writers have proven with Iron Man that they can write a movie script that (despite some changes) respects the source material.

  19. This has bad news written all over it… I don’t really see how this is going to work. Especially with the turn around they are hoping to have on this film. The film can be expected in 2011?? The animation took 8 years to make and it shows… I can already see this being a huge disaster, but that doesn’t really matter, they will just move on to the next great classic to destroy.

  20. thanks ken u just blow the end
    some times zip it u spoiler boy

  21. Hey, I just said there was a big monster, I didn’t say how it turns out or who wins or what! ;-)

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