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WIRE Buzz: Akira riding back to theaters; Netflix hunts Atlantis; Live-action 'Your Name' finds director

By Josh Weiss
Akira IMAX

Akira, the beloved and influential anime classic directed by Katushiro Otomo, is riding its motorcycle back into theaters for one night only. Next Thursday (Sept. 24), IMAX is bringing a 4K remaster of the 1988 movie back to big screens across the United States.

Before Warner Bros. remakes the iconic cyberpunk film in the space of live action (Taika Waititi's involvement is still up in the air), you can return to the original, hand-drawn beauty of Neo-Tokyo.

Akira IMAX poster

“Thirty years after its debut, Akira continues to inspire and influence fans and creators around the world,” Mitchel Berger, SVP Global Commerce, Funimation Global Group, exclusively tells SYFY WIRE. “It’s one of the greatest anime of all time and spurred the introduction of anime in the U.S. The remastering process has brought this 1988 classic back to the forefront for a new generation of fans to enjoy, and IMAX theatres provide a unique and immersive experience.”

Tickets for the limited event can be purchased right here. The link also includes participating theaters.

DisneyColin Trevorrow, and James Wan aren't the only ones interested in finding the lost city of Atlantis.

According to Deadline, Netflix has hooked the screen rights to Andy McDermott 2009's novel, The Hunt for Atlantis. A film adaptation, which could launch a mega-franchise, has been in development for a while with Aaron Berg (Borderlands) attached as writer and producer. Now Matt Reeves and Adam Kassan of 6th & Idaho have also boarded the project as producers.

The Hunt for Atlantis is the first installment in McDermott's 15-book "Nina Wilde/Eddie Chase" series. Similar to Indiana Jones, each book revolves around an epic adventure to find a mythical artifact or city. In the first book, archaeologist Nina Wilde teams up with a reclusive billionaire, his daughter, and an ex-SAS bodyguard, Eddie Chase (he eventually marries Nina), for a globe-trotting race against time that revolves around the sunken metropolis that lies in wait beneath the ocean.

But not everyone wants the city's underwater secrets to breach the surface world. As Nina and her team travel across the globe, their efforts are stymied by a clandestine and mysterious organization.

The Hunt for Atlantis

Mike Landry and Derek S. Jancisin are producing the adaptation as well. 

Reeves is currently in the U.K. filming The Batman with Robert Pattinson.

The live-action Your Name movie from producer J.J. Abrams just tapped Lee Isaac Chung as its director, reports Deadline. Based on this development, it sounds like he'll replace Marc Webb (The Amazing Spider-Man), first reported as the project's director last year.

Chung, who is known for helming Minari and Abigail Harm, is also rewriting the latest draft of the screenplay by Oscar nominee Emily V. Gordon (The Big Sick). Genki Kawamura, producer of the original, is attached as a producer on the live-action translation alongside Bad Robot. Toho will distribute the release in Japan, while Paramount handles all other markets. 

Lee Isaac Chung

Released in 2016, Your Name (directed by Makoto Shinkai) revolves around a pair of teenagers who suddenly swap bodies. "When a disaster threatens to upend their lives, they must journey to meet and save their worlds," writes Deadline.

"You have to find the best iteration of that story based on the fact that they want an American live-action version of the film," Eric Heisserer (Bird Box), who was originally writing the adaptation's script, said in 2018. "They stated if they wanted a Japanese live-action version, they would just do it themselves. But they want to see it through the lens of a Western viewpoint."