'Akira' Gets Green Light With Garrett Hedlund as Front-Runner
Garrett Hedlund might be a manga-based hero in live-action remake of Japanese anime "Akira". Variety reported that Warner Bros. Pictures has given a green light to the project, and is eyeing the "Tron Legacy" actor to tackle one of the two male lead roles.
No official offer has been made to Hedlund, but some insiders revealed that it will be made soon. Multiple sources added that the project will begin the production in late February or early March 2012, with Spanish director Jaume Collet-Serra replacing Albert Hughes to take on the helming duty.
"Akira" is based on Katsuhiro Otomo's 1988 anime of the same title. Set in New Manhattan, the story centers on a leader of motorcycle gang known as "The Capsules". He must save his best friend, who has a destructive psychokinetic abilities, from being a medical experiments of the government.
Back in 2008, Warner Bros. obtained the rights to the anime for a seven-figure deal from Kodansha. The development of this project, however, has been long-delayed due to budgetary issue. In July this year, the studio finally hired Collet-Serra to helm the project with a budget of only $90 million, which was below its initial figure of $100 million.
Leonardo DiCaprio, Jennifer Davisson Killoran and Andrew Lazar are serving as the producers. Meanwhile, the "Harry Potter" film series screenwriter Steve Kloves pens the script for the upcoming cyberpunk sci-fi epic.
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