March 30, 2017


Will Jordan Peele Direct the Live-Action 'Akira'?

Getty Images, FUNimation/Tokyo Movie Shinsha
Getty Images, FUNimation/Tokyo Movie Shinsha

Since Key & Peele wrapped in 2015, Jordan Peele has done a couple movies. One was the missing-cat-caper Keanu, which he wrote and co-starred in with Keegan-Michael Key. The next was his directorial debut Get Out (also written by him), which by many accounts is one of the best horror movies ever. Released five weeks ago, it's grossed more than $156 million on a reported $5 million budget.

So the world is kinda Peele's oyster, and The Tracking Board is saying that his oyster knife may now slash toward the live-action movie adaptation of Katsuhiro Otomo's classic Japanese manga Akira. Anonymously sourced intel at CinemaCon—where Peele is getting the Director of the Year award—tells the site "the talks have apparently been encouraging" between Warner Bros. and the 38-year-old MADtv alum.

Editor-in-chief Jeff Sneider previously heard Daniel Espinosa and David F. Sandberg were contenders, but "that discussion has shifted, with insiders saying the studio is moving aggressively to lock in Jordan Peele."

Post–Get Out, Peele said he has "four other social thrillers" he wants to make within the next decade. Talking with The Hollywood Reporter today, he said:

"There is a feeling of opportunity that is truly amazing. I've been in Hollywood for 14 years—14 years of closed doors and the grind. So to feel the energy coming from inside the industry, let alone from the country, is just one of the best feelings. Luckily I have reps who can help me sift through all of the opportunities. But I really want to continue to nurture my own voice. I love writing, so I'm not in any rush. I am a huge fan of Quentin Tarantino, who takes time to figure out what his next movie is."

Asked if his sketch comedy career is "over," he said, "Yes. I want to focus on writing, directing and producing."

Leonardo DiCaprio is among the Akira producers; Marco Ramirez (Daredevil, Fear the Walking Dead) penned the latest iteration of the script, "though it’s expected that Peele would do his own pass." The property became an anime film in 1988.

Next, watch a New York Comic Con rookie and veteran try to make their way through the convention together: