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WB Greenlights Live Action AKIRA

The Akira project has been in the works for quite a while now, but today I’m pleased to tell you that WB gave the project the greenlight to go ahead.

Variety reports that the studio will be making the live version of the popular anime starting in possibly late February or early March. The project has gone through a few directors and many names have been heard for the lead, the latest being Tron star Garrett Hedlund.

The original budget of the film was more that $100 million, but is now at a more do-able $90 million. This new lower cost version is set to be directed by Jaume Collet-Serra who replaces Albert Hughes who left the project a few months ago.

Now that the studio has set a budget and has the greenlight, the next step is to find their male leads. While many names have been thrown around over the years, Hedlund is considered to be a front-runner as both studio and director have eyes on him.

If it’s been a while, or you haven’t seen Akira, I’ll fill you in. The film is a cyberpunk sci-fi epic in which a biker gang in New Manhattan is led by a guy who has to save his friend who has some really dangerous psychokinetic abilities. On the other side of the biker gang is the government who want to capture him and do medical experiments.

If you remember Leonardo DiCaprio somehow being involved in this, it’s because him and Jennifer Davisson Killoran are producing the movie under Appian Way. Mad Chance’s Andrew Lazar will also be producing.

The original anime was written and directed by Katsuhiro Otomo in 1988. Otomo will serve as an executive producer for the live-action film.

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