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The entertainment trade magazine Variety and the film news website Deadline.com reported that the end is not near for the live-action Akira film, even though pre-production is being shut down for now.
Warner Bros. wants the current script draft, which was written by David James Kelly, to be reworked. Deadline.com added the studio will quickly hire "a high-end writer to do a polish" on the script before deciding whether to resume the project or not. Variety named Jonah Nolan (The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises) and Michael Green (Green Lantern) as possible candidates, but emphasized that no rewriting job has actually been offered yet. Studio sources did tell Variety that the script and cast are the issues, not the US$90-million budget.
According to Deadline, the Warner Bros. studio had option deals with two acting candidates for the central role of Tetsuo, Dane DeHaan (Chronicle, True Blood, far left) and Michael Pitt (Boardwalk Empire,. left) However, both of their options deals ended today, so the actors are no longer legally bound to keep their schedules open for Akira. (Production would have started on March 5 before the shutdown.)
Warner Bros. officially green-lit the film for production in October with director Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown, Orphan, House of Wax). When the project was originally announced in 2008, it was intended to be the directorial debut for Ireland's Ruairi Robinson. Actor Leonardo DiCaprio (Titanic, The Aviator) is producing through his Appian Way production company.
Images via IMDb