Akira sequel anime series coming from Katsuhiro Otomo
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Akira creator Katsuhiro Otomo announced at Anime Expo that he is set to direct a new Akira sequel anime series to be produced by Bandai Namco’s Sunrise! Otomo also announced that he will write and direct his third feature animation titled Orbital Era, an action-adventure story set in the near future on an under-construction space colony. Check out the first poster for Orbital Era in the gallery below!
The 65-year-old Otomo previously directed the 1988 anime feature of Akira, based on his legendary manga of the same name. He then spent 10 years creating his next animated movie, 2004’s Steamboy. He also helmed the live-action films World Apartment Horror and Mushishi. His most recent directorial effort was a segment in 2013’s animated anthology Short Peace.
Warner Bros. is currently in pre-production on their long-gestating live-action feature version of Akira, set to arrive in theaters on May 21, 2021. The big budget film will be directed by Oscar nominee Taika Waititi (Two Cars, One Night, Thor: Ragnarok, Jojo Rabbit).
The movie is an adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo’s anime. Akira consists of six volumes and there are reportedly going to be two films, each based on three volumes. There was a Japanese animated film based on Akira back in 1988, directed by Otomo.
The movie adaptation has carried this synopsis for years: Set in a future city environment called New Manhattan, the sci-fi epic follows the leader of a biker gang who must save his best friend, who has been experimented on by the government causing him to develop dangerous and destructive psychokinetic powers.
Andrew Lazar (American Sniper) and Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way are producing the film, for which the studio acquired the rights back in 2008. It’s had plenty of talent attached before. The closest it came to being made was in 2012 when Jaume Collet-Serra was to direct Garrett Hedlund, Kristen Stewart, Ken Watanabe and Helena Bonham Carter.
Akira will film in California following an $18.5 million tax credit award from the California Film Commission. The Akira movie production team is expected to spend upwards of $92 million in the state of California. The movie is a passion project for Waititi, who saw the animated movie when he was a kid in the late ’80s.