American Akira remake dead
It would appear that the planned remake of Akira, which would see the city of the story uprooted and placed in America, has been scrapped and even the might of Leonardo DiCarprio producing can't save it.
Ruairi Robinson was set to direct the project and has now left, and to add to that sources are revealing that the entire project is dead.
The story about Akira (Amazon.co.uk / Amazon.com) being made into a live action film came back in October of 2007, and then in February of 2008 it was officially confirmed, not as one film though, but as two.
Ruairi Robinson was directing with Gary Whitta writing the script, and while we heard word later on that the script was going well from Leonardo DiCaprio himself, it now seems that the project is dead.
The original film told of two friends in one of the bike gangs of New Tokyo, the leader Kaneda, and his close friend Tetsuo. Tetsuo is pulled into a secret government experiment called Akira and Kaneda tries to save him. However on the way various powerful factions of the city begin fighting both physically and politically while a prior unknown supernatural power begins to rise in Tetsuo threatening to consume him and the entire city.
We had heard that the new story was going to uproot the location from Japan to America, with Japanese corporations buying the land where New York once stood, now just a deserted island amidst a collapsed economy. They invest, build it up to a new sprawling metropolis called New Tokyo, and that's where the events take place.
They say that the director Ruairi Robinson has left the production and that the project is now officially dead.
I have mixed feelings about this, and you should too. The Americanisation of the story might have been interesting, or it might have been a completed disaster, but a live action version of Akira could have been amazing. Perhaps we'll never see it happen, perhaps the time and the economy just aren't right.
Would you have wanted to see an Akira remake, or have you no connection with the original so anything would have been good?