Well, it looks like Warner Bros has gotten their collective heads out of Akira’s ass. The studio has decided to place the beloved scifi Neo-Tokyo era anime on hold. For now.
The live action version has gone through a ton of incarnations and developed a series of casting, script issues along with an ever ballooning budget. THR is reporting that
The production offices in Vancouver are being closed, with below-the-line talent and crew told to stop working. “Everybody is being sent home,” according to an insider. Producers, who include Appian Way’s Jennifer Kiloran Davisson and Mad Chance’s Andrew Lazar, will hunker down with director Jaume Collet-Serra for the next two weeks to iron out the script. It is unclear if Harry Potter scribe Steve Kloves, who did a pricey rewrite on the project a year ago, will be brought in to help out. If the issues cannot be resolved, the project could end up being shelved entirely, say insiders.
So, with the budget already being too much to swallow, and the studio (probably) thinking that they cannot make enough money from the project, don’t you feel better? I know I don’t! Too me, this all sounds like problems with profit and not concerns about content.
My entire problem with this film stems from some simple, but obviously never asked questions:
- Do you know any Asian people?
- If yes, is it possible that one or more of those Asians are actually Japanese?
For fucks sake, why can’t there be some actually Japanese actors/actresses in this film!? I completely understand the studios perception that American’s must have every foreign film remade in their own language as well as having it take place in the US. But DAMNIT!… pay respect to the original, pay homage to the creative power of that 1988 classic. Keep the originals names, and ethnicity. Most Americans know that Asians exist, and can handle that a non-white guy is the lead.
In the end, I still fear for the live action remake of Akira. First of all, I think it will happen; which is not bad in itself. Secondly, I am very concerned the studio is going for an on the cheap, budget/profit driven production model. And third, most importantly, I really think the writing will be absolutely shit. What do you think?