Hollywood Remake of “Akira” green-lit, but is it a good idea?

As Variety reported this week, the supposed Hollywood re-make of anime classic Akira has been given the go-ahead by Warner Brothers.

Controversial to manga/anime fans because of its intention to be a live-action film, Akira would begin production in February or March…once a star is signed on to the project, that is.

Rumors are swirling that Garrett Hedlund of the recent Tron: Legacy film would star, but nothing has been confirmed yet. Past rumors tied both Robert Pattinson of Twilight and James Franco to the film, although those appear to have been mere speculation.

 

Would Hedlund make a good star?

The Guardian (UK) posted this article describing why a live-action Akira film is a bad idea. This passage is particularly critical:

There are so many reasons why the notion of a Hollywood remake of Akira is a bad idea that Warner’s decision to employ such an unpromising creative team seems almost incidental. The original Anime is idiosyncratically Japanese in its vision of a nation constantly at risk of destruction by man-made or environmental forces; removing it to the States makes little or no sense. Moreover, the shift from cyberpunk teenagers to grown men dilutes the sense of lost potential that imbues the original with such rich melancholy. And live action is a wildly inappropriate form for such a fantastic storyline. How does one film a human being morphing into an enormous The Thing-like blob of blood, guts and brain tissue, other than through some very silly CGI?

If this film does indeed happen and advances beyond planning stages, what are the chances that it will be any good? Will you go see it? Of course, considering Hollywood, there’s no guarantee that the ground won’t fall out from underneath the project and relegate it to the scrap bin. We’ll just have to wait and see.

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