Live action Akira remake gets the go ahead

Garrett Hedlund on Warner Bros. casting hit list

 
After all the years of rumours it seems the live-action remake of anime smash Akira is finally getting the go ahead, with Warner Bros. backing the project. 
 
Those who have longed for a big Hollywood reimagining of the dayglo world of Neo-Tokyo have finally got their wish. 
 
Well, sort of. It seems the studio is setting the budget at around $90m, which (it sounds crazy to say) is modest by today's standards. 
 
Spanish director Jaume Collet-Serra (Orphan, Unknown) will take the helm on a shoot that's expected to start in February or March 2012. 
 
Warner Bros. and Collet-Serra have apparently already decided their first casting choice: Tron Legacy's Garrett Hedlund. 
 
Both are said to be "keen" on him and with the movie now greenlit expect to sign him up. 
 
There's no word on which of the two male leads he'd play yet - biker Kaneda or his friend Tetsuo. 
 
However, if Warner Bros. is picking Hedlund for the role of Kaneda (as we suspect it is), TF's casting choice for Tetsuo is between Anton Yelchin or Ezra Miller. Discuss.

Did Hedlund's name come to mind when you thought about a live-action Akira? Do you agree that either Anton Yelchin or Ezra Miller would make a good Tetsuo? Get casting in the comments section below!

Comments

    • Rytrospyk

      Oct 20th 2011, 21:19

      I have a really bad feeling about this, mediocre director with a sub par lead. If I was Warner Bros I'd get Zack Snyder booked up after Superman, he's usually pretty loyal to subject material and even if it stinks, it'll look fantastic.

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    • Phumpy

      Oct 20th 2011, 22:14

      Why update this classic. Don't get me wrong, I'm not anti-remake, but this is just pointless. It's a Japanese classic and setting it anywhere other than Japan detracts from the whole post-Hiroshima paranoia which made the original so powerful. Also, it doesn't look bad. The animation is fantastic and easily holds up to any computer animated film. Really, what could this remake possibly add to the original. All this will achieve is the scarring of a masterpiece.

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    • shasmo

      Oct 21st 2011, 8:50

      please god no thing is this you wouldnt poo on a masterpiece like the mona lisa so why do it to akira it still looks as fresh an relevant as when i saw it 16 years ago

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    • robotjox

      Oct 21st 2011, 11:03

      Greatest film ever. Leave it alone. Mark my words, no good will come of this.

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    • alexr

      Oct 21st 2011, 11:39

      Garrett Hedlund is only being suggested due to his involvement in Tron:Legacy (a Disney film where he rides a few bikes - wow, great stretch there...). How about someone like Cameron Bright for Kaneda with Anton Yelchin (Good Call TF) for Tetsuo? As long as it's not bloody Justin Bieber, I'll be happy...

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    • AwesomePossum

      Oct 22nd 2011, 22:02

      So they're finally making this after so many years of trying?! This could be really awesome! I understand why so many fans are upset that Hollywood is remaking this cartoon. But let's think about it, there's a chance the director is a fan of Akira too. Plus, now a days they can do better stuff with CG for a movie like this. And I agree with "alexr", Garrett Hedlund is a good choice for Kaneda. Although, I like Anton Yelchin I think Joe Jonas could be an interesting option for Tetsuo too.

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    • fnaph

      Oct 23rd 2011, 9:51

      I've got to be honest AwesomePossum, I just threw up in my mouth a little when I read your post. Joe Jonas, really? If transformers was anything to go by hollywood just doesn't seem to get japanese animation (or any original source material at all for that matter). At least that was just a saturday morning kids cartoon though, if they ruin akira it'll be a much bigger crime. Personally the only way I think I'd feel even slightly optimistic about this is if they got Katsuhiro Otomo onboard in some manner, as co-director, writer, etc.

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    • alexr

      Oct 24th 2011, 10:43

      @AwesomePossum Just to be clear - I do not think Garrett Hedlund would be good for the role of Kaneda. I think it is clearly Disney planning to use the same actor because he already played a role where he rode a few bikes in a sci-fi movie. If I was the cynical type, I might even suggest that they are considering casting Hedlund in the hopes that people will like him in Akira and go find other movies that he has done, increasing the longevity of the frankly (imo) average Tron: Legacy...if I was cynical...

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    • AwesomePossum

      Oct 26th 2011, 22:44

      It could be cool if they have the Akira universe cross with Speed Racer's (loved the visual vibrancy of that movie). Kinda like what Marvel's doing with the Avengers; crossing universes to help out characters with a weaker story-line, like the Hawkeye, the Black Widow and the Hulk to name a few . Or maybe Akira would work better with the Green Lantern's universe? That way Hal Jordan can help out the Akira story-line by knocking out Tetsuo with one giant punch or something. It could be awesome!

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