There's no way this is true. There is absolutely no way in hell anyone would be stupid enough to cast Zac freakin' Efron as the lead character in the live-action film adaptation of the popular anime/Katsuhiro Otomo‘s manga series Akira. But, thats the rumor. /film reports that they are "not able to confirm the offer, but one source tells me Efron is in talks, while another says that it is far from a done deal.” I guess this is Hollywood we're dealing with here, and anything is possible. Damn them!
The film project is currently set up at Warner Bros. through Leonardo DiCaprio's Apian Way production company. Albert Hughes of the Hughes Bros. is attached to direct the movie, which I thought was a bad idea in the first place. I don't think he's got what it takes to make a great Akira movie.
The film project has been in development for years now, passing through the hands of several screenwriters such as Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby (Earlier Drafts for Children of Men & Iron Man), as well as Gary Whitta (The Book of Eli).
The last we heard, Albert Tores (Henry Poole is Here) was hired to re-write the script, and Hughes revealed the unsettling news that they were looking to develop a PG-13 version of the story, which is just wrong on so many levels. This is a hard 'R' film for cryin'-out-loud! It was also noted that Hughes was "conceptualizing the movie with a bunch of visual artists,"and that he may end up only directing the first of two planned films. (One adapting the first three manga volumes, and the second, volumes four through six.)
So if this is all turns out to be true, Akira is going to be a PG-13 film starring Zac Efron. Wow, that sucks. Our only hope is that the project falls through. Hughes drops out as the director and Efron gets lost in a giant hedge maze, never to find his way out.
Care to share your thoughts on this bull crap?