Akira remake loses director

It just keeps looking worse for the American attempt at Akira.

The planned director for the film, Albert Hughes (of From Hell fame) has backed out due to creative differnces. Warner Bros. is keeping him in the fold, however, and is already in talks with him to get a different film in front of his director’s chair.

The film has hit a few bumps in the PR road, as the announcements for potential actors races and ages fail to match up with fans’ expectations.

Akira is about a group of youths in a motorcycle gang. When one of them has to be rescued from a scientific experiment, it sets off a chain of events that lead to monstrous confrontations.

Thematically, the movie is about freedom and rebellion with a nice mix-in of teen angst. The plan is to make the story into two films, each covering half of the original six-book manga.

The IP is likely a big priority for the studio since they paid a lot of money for the rights, and they are planning on pouring a lot more into production and talent.

The Adaptation moves the story from Neo-Tokyo to New Manhattan, which may explain some of the strange choices for actors: Robert Pattinson, Andrew Garfield, James McAvoy, Garrett Hedlund, Michael Fassbender, Chris Pine, Justin Timberlake, and Joaquin Phoenix.

Later they approached Keanu Reeves about the lead role, but that didn’t pan out.

Now that the director must be changed, Warner Bros. will likely approach all of these actors again with a new director, and see if they have changed their minds. 

Andrew Lazar, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Jennifer Davisson still make up the production team.