WB Gives Collet-Serra's 'Akira' the Greenlight, Hedlund Now Top Pick
Are you ready for Garrett Hedlund to ruin another beloved sci-fi classic? Out of nowhere tonight, Variety reports that Warner Bros has given their live-action Akira adaptation the greenlight. But I can no longer call it big budget or an epic re-adaptation, as it's been shrunk down to a modest $90 million budget and presumably only one film, instead of two. At the helm, since Book of Eli's Albert Hughes dropped off earlier this year, is Spaniard Jaume Collet-Serra, director of Orphan and Unknown, both for WB. The project is now aiming to start shooting early next year around February/March. There's a casting tidbit in there, too.
They go on to say that, despite all of the rumors earlier this year (and over the years) about casting, the one name that the "studio" is particularly interested is Garrett Hedlund. Didn't they see Tron Legacy? Word is that Collet-Serra and the studio execs are "keen" on him, but had to wait until this greenlight to sign him. And now "insiders say it's only a matter of time." Now the question is - would he play Kaneda or Tetsuo in this? And who else are they looking at for the other role. While I don't think Hedlund is bad, he just doesn't have the chops to play one of these characters, and I'd prefer someone with more depth for this adaptation.
I know most people don't want to see this Akira movie made at all. Despite all the effort many of you have put in trying to emphasize that this shouldn't be made, Warner Bros is intent on making it. I'm just praying and hoping that Collet-Serra can do a good job, especially with only $90 million. I hope he's got some big ideas. I'm admittedly intrigued to see a live-action Akira, but only under the right circumstances. And while Collet-Serra may be an acceptable choice, please Warner Bros, do not cast Sam Flynn in this. Anyone but Hedlund! I really want Akira to be enjoyable in some way and it won't help if he's starring in it. Thoughts?