After a bevy of starts and stops, of directors dropping out and new ones hopping on, of Keanu Reeves flirting with the lead to a list of handsome Hollywood contenders—the live-action adaptation of Akira has been fraught with difficulty. Now, Warner Bros. has given the movie the green light and might be tapping a Tron: Legacy star.
With director Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown) taking over for Albert Hughes and the budget scaled down to a respectable $90 million—a bargain compared to the $215 million Lone Ranger—Warner Bros. has given Akira the go-ahead. The producers have set their sights on Tron: Legacy's Garrett Hedlund to play "Kaneda," the biker punk with a heart of gold who deals with the varied threats of New Manhattan while helping his friend deal with newly emergent psychic powers.
I put Kaneda in quotes since it's unclear whether the Japanese character names will remain, given that the film's setting has been shifted from Neo Tokyo to New Manhattan. It's being Americanized, for sure—even though the film's still being called Akira—but there's no way to know by how much.