Last week, a lot and we mean a LOT of fans of the popular Japanese anime Akira were up in arms about the possibility of Zac Efron appearing in the live action adaptation of the property. According to a report from Bloody Disgusting, he’s not the only one circling a role in the Warner Bros movie. Oscar winner Morgan Freeman might slip into the shoes of the infamous Colonel for the film.
Here’s a character description courtesy of the manga’s Wikipedia page:
Sometimes known as Colonel Shikishima (敷島大佐, Shikishima Taisa?), he is the head of the secret government project conducting research on psychic test subjects, including the Esper children, Tetsuo, and formerly Akira. Although he originally appears to be an antagonist, the Colonel is actually an honorable and dedicated soldier committed to protecting Neo-Tokyo from any second onslaught of Akira. Later in the story he appears helping an ill Chiyoko, and working with Kei. He is usually referred to by Kaneda as “The Skinhead”, due to his distinctive crew cut.
Haven’t we seen Freeman play this character already in Wanted? In the back of our minds we always saw Chuck Liddell as the Colonel. They look just alike!
Akira will be directed by The Hughes Brothers, and will center on “a teen biker gang member is subjected to a government experiment which unleashes his latent powers. The gang’s leader must find a way to stop the ensuing swathe of destruction.” All of this action is set against a neon-lit futuristic post-nuclear war “New Tokyo” in 2019.
What do you think of Morgan Freeman possibly playing the Colonel?