Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
Star Wars: The Force Awakens Teaser Trailer
The Farewell To Middle-earth Issue
Review Of The Year 2014
Subscribe: Get 12 Issues For £25
Buy the perfect Christmas present this year
Farewell To Middle-earth
Full details of our Peter Jackson-edited issue
Movie News

LATEST HEADLINES
24 December 2014
Andy Serkis Takes Us Inside The Imaginarium
The actor-director gives us a tour of his state-of-the-art studio
Sony To Release The Interview After All
Update: US cinemas get limited roll-out
More Movie News

RELATED NEWS
24 December 2014
Sony To Release The Interview After All
Update: US cinemas get limited roll-out
More Movie News

RELATED FUTURE FILMS
The Interview
06 February 2015
More Future Films

RELATED REVIEWS
Fury (2014)
Empire Star Rating
Palo Alto (2014)
Empire Star Rating
Maps To The Stars (2014)
Empire Star Rating
The Rover (2014)
Empire Star Rating
X-Men: Days Of Future Past (2014)
Empire Star Rating
More new cinemas releases
DVD & Blu-ray releases

Akira Back To The Drawing Board
Keanu passes; staff let go...

18 May 2011  |  Written by Owen Williams  |  Source: JoBlo

submit to reddit

It's back to Development Hell for one of the most difficult potential projects on Warners' slate. Studio favourite Keanu Reeves was in talks for Akira a couple of weeks ago, but has now officially passed on the Americanised epic, adapted from Katsuhiro Otomo's classic manga. And with that, Warners are pausing for a re-think.

The Hollywood Akira, thought to be relocating to New Manhattan from Neo Tokyo, has been lumbering slowly along for some time now. Leonardo DiCaprio's Appian Way production company picked it up in early 2008, and after several screenplay drafts, including one by Children of Men writers Hawk Ostby and Mark Fergus, Albert Hughes signed on to direct in 2010. Sporadic casting rumours took in Brad Pitt, Ryan Gosling, James Franco, Andrew Garfield, James McAvoy, Robert Pattinson and Zac Efron. The most recent run at the script was by Harry Potter's Steve Kloves.

Very early reports gave the colossal project a colossal budget, but we seem now to be talking about somewhere around $140m: the same as Thor and JJ Abrams' Star Trek, and $60m less than Roland Emmerich's 2012. Nervous about rising costs, Warners were apparently talking to Universal about joining forces, with Warners helping out on the seemingly equally beleaguered Dark Tower in exchange. That deal seems now to be off the table, and as of last week, Akira's pre-viz FX department has been closed, and most staff let go.

Warners however, are keen to stress that this is not the end of the road for Tetsuo and Kaneda, or whatever their American counterparts might be called. "Production on Akira has not halted or been shut down," they explained in an official statement, "as the film has not yet been greenlit and is still very much at the development stage. The exploratory process is crucial to a project of this magnitude, and we continue to sculpt our approach to making the best possible film."

Hughes remains attached, and will apparently continue to work with Kloves on cracking a lean and economical screenplay. 


Have Your Say
To comment on this, and all articles, register for free or login now.

New Green Lantern Posters Online
Hector Hammond and Abin Sur
Todd Field Accepts The Creed Of Violence
Update: He's got the funds to make it

SUBSCRIPTION OFFERS

SAVE UP TO 69% GET 12 ISSUES FOR ONLY £25
Get the best seat in the house by subscribing to the world's biggest movie magazine today. Save up to 69% and every month you'll get exclusive subscriber-only covers, access to the biggest stars and the best news, reviews and behind-the-scenes reports straight from the set. Click here to find the perfect offer for you


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
Empire's Three Favourite Scenes Of 2014
A hat-trick of moneyshots from the last 12 months

The 32 Funniest Movie Moments Of The Year
2014's side-splittingest scenes

The 10 Best Games Of The Year
2014's top pixel-pushers duke it out for the number one slot

Dan Stevens: The Breakout Star Of 2014
We congratulate The Guest star on his year to remember

The 15 Most Memorable Character Deaths Of The Year
2014’s RIP honour roll

Watch: Night At The Museum's Cast Share Their Favourite Robin Williams Performance
Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson and Ben Kingsley pay tribute to the actor

Watch: Jack O'Connell And Luke Treadaway Talk Unbroken
On POWs, panto and how to name your bomber

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 12 Issues Of Empire For Only £25!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 12 issues of Empire for just £25!
Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)