Akira Stalled, Says Jaume Collet-Serra


Though solid reviews for his Liam Neeson actioner Run All Night mean Jaume Collet-Serra is probably having a pretty great week, it hasn’t been all smooth sailing for the director lately. Collet-Serra has been diligently working on an Akira adaptation for multiple years now, but recent comments he made about the project are sure to disappoint fans of the manga.

While making the rounds for Run All Night, Collet-Serra was asked about what progress has been made on the Akira movie since Edge of Tomorrow scribe Dante Harper was hired to pen the script last July. His response:

“No, no. There’s nothing.”

The director recently shot Non-Stop and Run All Night practically back-to-back, so any time he could have set aside for Akira in the past year would have been understandably minimal. It’s not next on his slate, either. Instead, when asked what he was getting up to in the coming weeks, Collet-Serra responded:

“A vacation! I truly will not make a decision on a movie for a few months because I’ve done these two movies in three years without any time off so I cannot wait for this movie to come out and just fade away. So my next movie’s not gonna be for a while, let’s put it this way.”

Given the level of commitment Collet-Serra had to show both of his last films, that vacation sounds perfectly deserved. After all, Akira has proven quite a headache over the years – it’s not the kind of project he’d take on to kick up his feet a bit.

Warner Bros. has been trying to get Akira made for years, but it balked at the $180 million budget that Albert Hughes came up with back when he was involved. Collet-Serra came aboard and succeeded in chopping the price tag to $90 million, but the studio is pushing to pare that down to between $60 and $70 million, a significant subtraction.

The project is by no means dead, the director said. He still wants to make it, possibly after his vacation and his next film. But when asked whether a budget can be approved, Harper’s script will meet expectations and Warner Bros. can commit to a Japan shoot, Collet-Serra could only respond:

“It’s a Warner Bros question.”

Fair enough. We’ll keep you posted as more on Akira emerges in the coming months.