An official plot for the American live-action adaptation of Japanese anime film, Akira.
A seemingly official plot synopsis has surfaced for the upcoming live-action adaptation of 1988 Japanese cyberpunk animation, Akira and the storyline is very different from the plot of original manga and anime on which the movie is based. Both the original Akira manga as well as the 1988 anime adaptation are set in a futuristic, technologically dominated, Neo-Tokyo and follow Shōtarō Kaneda as he tries to rescue his childhood friend, Tetsuo Shima, who has been captivated for a secret government project.
Warner Bros.' live-action Akira film is finally getting its momentum for the production after being in development for a little over a decade. The movie was passed between a slew of directors, including George Miller (Mad Max, 2015), Justin Lin (Fast franchise), and Jordan Peele (Us, 2019). The project eventually found new life in 2017 when Thor: Ragnarok director Taika Waititi concurred to wheel the film. Recently, WB and Leonardo DiCaprio, whose production company Appian Way is set to venture the upcoming film, and the parties have received an $18 million tax incentive to film Akira in California. Both production houses are committed to seeing the project turning into fruition, as is Waititi.
Taika Waititi, the director from the 2017 Thor: Ragnarok is set to direct Akira the live action adaptation. SOURCE: Google
This plot summary for Akira comes from Production Weekly (via CBR), an enterprise that provides a comprehensive breakdown of upcoming projects in film and television from the viewpoint of professional showbiz analysts. The experts have shared the announcement on Instagram and it is quite an overflow of details regarding Akira's characters and setting. And the story follows as,
A young man, Tetsuo is kidnapped by the military and is being operated so as to develop telekinesis out of him. He is then considered for transitioning into a super weapon and his brother, Kaneda must race to save him before Manhattan is destroyed by his enhanced powers. Kaneda is a bar owner in Neo-Manhattan who is shocked when his brother Tetsuo is abducted by Government agents lead by then evil Colonel.
Desperate to get his sibling back, Kaneda agrees to join Ky Reed and her underground operation who are intent on disclosing the truth to the world as to what had actually happened to New York City 30 years ago when it was destroyed. Kaneda believes their theories are all made up, but after seeing his brother showcasing a vehement force, Kaneda is forced to rethink. Ky believes Tetsuo is going to be possessed by menacing energy, Akira. As predicted, Akira alas takes control of Tetsuo’s mind.
Meanwhile, Kaneda clashes with the Colonel’s troops on his way to stop Tetsuo from fully releasing Akira, but arrives too late. Akira liberates and once again destroys Manhattan island in the same way he destroyed New York, thirty years ago.
The abridged sketch for the live-action Akira includes several differences from both the original anime and manga. For one, the live-action featurette will be set in way too futuristic city of Manhattan, instead of Tokyo, and rather than being a member of a biker gang, Kaneda will have a job as a bartender. The principal point of the plot, Kaneda trying to rescue Tetsuo from the military after he develops telekinetic powers, appears to remain the same, only this Tetsuo is Kaneda's brother instead of his childhood friend.
Of course, these story elements could always change again before or even during the filming, considering the movie is still in the early stages of development.
Watch the best scenes from the Akira (1988)
Waititi has previously mentioned that he is keen about adapting the manga rather than the anime and wants to keep the ethnicity of all the characters true to the original, which has assured many of the fans since a majority of them were already worried of the adaptation getting in the spell of Hollywood Anime curse.
Though the existing plot details show some dissimilarities between the live-action movie and its source material, Waititi's preference and respect to the original should bring something good out of the upcoming film despite the ongoing changes.
His latest directorial work, Thor: Ragnarok, also shows his ability to liven up any genre. The Australian filmmaker was successfully able to take Thor's story in a vibrant new direction while simultaneously following the source material, so it's pretty expected of him to carry that signature in Akira when it begins filming later this year.