It looks like an Akira film trilogy might actually be in the early stages of development, with Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan attached in some capacity.
We know, we know. Akira has been one of those projects that, for over a decade, has been repeatedly set to receive a big screen adaptation, only to fall apart at the last minute. Perhaps rightfully so — a post-apocalyptic, cyberpunk, Japanese manga series doesn’t exactly jump off the page as something that would be easy to adapt by any major Western studio, hence why the project has sat in development hell over at Warner Bros. since about 2002, with everyone from Keanu Reeves to Garrett Hedlund to Kristen Stewart attached to the cast list at one point.
But now, Den of Geek is reporting that not only is an Akira live-action project finally moving forward, but that the manga series from Katsuhiro Otomo will possibly be turned into a trilogy of films.
A “source close to Warner” tells DoG that Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company, Appian Way — which was also recently reported to be (finally) moving forward with the similarly delayed Devil in White City adaptation — and Sons of Anarchy screenwriter Marco J. Ramirez will be penning the script, and not only that, but Dark Knight director Christopher Nolan might also be involved.
Most intriguingly of all, we’re told that Christopher Nolan has met with a previously attached filmmaker (who we can’t name here) within the past three months to talk about the project.
It was recently announced, of course, that Nolan’s next film is out in July 2017. As ever, it’s a project shrouded in secrecy. Could that film be Akira? It’s a far-fetched notion, perhaps, but its positioning as a summer film certainly suggests that Nolan has something major in store, and a big-budget adaptation of Akira could fit that bill. And while Nolan has the kind of industry clout to make just about anything he wants, his prior relationship with Warner – and his history with Leonardo DiCaprio on Inception – might add weight to the Akira theory.
Of course, there’s a strong possibility that Nolan might simply be attached to Akira as a producer (like he was with Man of Steel), but for now, my only questions all revolve around how Warner Bros. plans to completely whitewash this adaptation in regards to their casting. Joseph Gordon Levitt as Kaneda, maybe? Benedict Cumberbatch as Tetsuo? Ugh, the mind wanders.
Source: Den of Geek