We all greeted the recent news that Keanu Reeves was interested in joining the Warner Bros. live-action adaptation of Akira with a collective yawn. It's not like the studio has done itself any favors since they first offered the lead role to tween heartthrob Zac Efron last year. Luckily, Reeves has officially passed on the chance to star in the adaptation cult Japanese manga.

In an attempt to stop the project from entering development limbo, Harry Potter franchise screenwriter Steve Kloves is attempting to trim the fat, both on the script and the budget. As of now, the long-in-development Akira hasn't been officially greenlit yet. 

One positive, though, is that there is a director on board: Albert Hughes, one half of the sibling team behind Menace II Society and Dead Presidents. But despite tons of fan outcry, Kloves' script will still be based upon whitewashed characters that'll be at least 20 years older than Katsuhiro Otomo's original manga characters. Consider the other big-name actors who've previously turned the project down: Brad Pitt, James Franco, and Ryan Gosling.

Do you think that the social commentary will be lost in translation in this version of Akira?  Or that it's simply destined to fail? Speak your mind.

[Via JoBlo]