Almost exactly one year ago, we learned that Warner Bros. was getting the long-gestating adaptation of ‘Akira’ off the ground again with the help of Marco J. Ramierez. The studio announced that the ‘Daredevil’ co-showrunner would be the latest in a long, long list of people to resurrect the project and develop a new screenplay based on the tale of two brothers from rival biker gangs that are pitted against each other in a post-nuclear apocalypse Neo-Tokyo. But since then, we haven’t heard much movement on WB’s latest attempt at a live-action iteration of the iconic cyberpunk anime. However, a new rumor says that the studio has a certain fast and furious director in mind for the project.
According to Meet The Movie Press host Jeff Sneider, Warner Bros. is actively courting Justin Lin to direct ‘Akira’. After breaking onto the scene with the classic Asian-American film ‘Better Luck Tomorrow’, the filmmaker really hit his stride when he revitalized the ‘Fast and Furious’ franchise with ‘The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift’, ‘Fast & Furious’, ‘Fast Five’, and ‘Fast & Furious 6’. Since then, Lin has been hard at work on ‘Star Trek Beyond’, which hits theaters next month. He’s also attached to ‘Space Jam 2’ starring Lebron James, which is currently being set up at WB.
It’s no secret that Hollywood has had a tumultuous history with adapting anime and manga. ‘Dragonball: Evolution’, ‘Ghost in the Shell’, and even previous attempts at ‘Akira’ drew the ire of the Asian community, so it’s easy to say that attaching Lin to this production is one way to appease the extremely vocal audience (rightfully) calling for proper representation in movies and television. However, he is also a very talented director that is very deserving of such a high profile project. Should this rumor actually come to fruition, ‘Akira’ would certainly be in very capable hands.
Would you like to see Justin Lin direct ‘Akira’ for Warner Bros.? What other directors could you see doing a good job with this adaptation? Sound off in the comments.