Taika Waititi's directing Thor 4!

Thor: Ragnarok was, by one million miles (or parsecs, if you will) one of the most delightful surprises in a decade of superhero flicks. Much of the film's charm was arguably due to the joy that Taika Waititi brings to every project he's associated with. Good news everybody: he's coming back for Thor 4!

From Gizmodo:

Thor will be back in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and Taika Waititi will once again be steering the ship.

The Hollywood Reporter says that the Thor: Ragnarok director has signed on to direct a fourth Thor movie. He’ll also write, according to EW. This happened after some issues arose with what was expected to be his next film, Akira, which is now going to be delayed.

Yeah, the rear end of the good news is that Waititi's on-again-off-again push to make a live-action version of Akira is going to have to wait a little while longer. That sucks but hey: more Korg, more Hemsworth, more Waititi! I suppose it stands to reason that they'd let him take a crack at the sequel. the film, which had a budget of $180 million, made $853,977,126 in theaters, worldwide

io9 has to say the delay could might be caused by the timing of Thor: Ragnarok (ironic) and issues with Akira's script. What'll happen to Waititi's Akira remains to be seen. However, I'd love to see it made. I might not be a huge Akira fan, but I'd be moderately enthused to see it made, because WAITITI! Read the rest

Akira to be re-released in high definition

I love comic books and graphic novels. I'm not ashamed to say that dig me some cartoons. Sadly, I've never been able to get into anime and manga. It's a shame: I know that there are a ton of series available to watch, stream or buy online that I might potentially enjoy. I loved Robotech when I was younger. However, when I re-watched it recently, it didn't hold up for me. Every time I attempt to invest in something new, like Cowboy Bebop, Full Metal Alchemist or Bleach, I quickly lose interest. I think it's more about my tastes in entertainment than it is about the medium--there's lots of folks who love anime. I'm just not one of them.

One of my earliest flirtations with anime was Akira. I was maybe 13, at the time. An arthouse theatre in the town I grew up in was playing it. I was drawn to the poster: Shotaro Kaneda astride his badass ride, holding what I thought looked like a bazooka. I bought the ticket and took the ride. I was way too young (or maybe too dense?) to be able to follow what the hell was going on. A few years later, I discovered the Akira manga, translated into English. I gave them a go. Better, but I still preferred Green Lantern. Also, I'm pretty sure that all the mutant blob weirdness gave me nightmares.

But hey, maybe it's high time to give it another try.

From io9:

Announced yesterday evening at Otomo’s panel at Anime Expo, Akira will be reborn across two different initiatives: first, an ultra-HD remastering of the original movie, which is set to release on blu-ray in Japan on April 24, 2020, with a western release coming at a later date (interestingly timed, given that Warner Bros.

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Akira volume 2, Cartoonist Kayfabe Commentary

What better way to celebrate 2019, the year before the Neo-Tokyo Summer Olympics, than to revisit Katsuhiro Otomo's classic manga in a book club format with the Cartoonist Kayfabe crew, Ed Piskor, Jim Rugg, and Tom Scioli . Miss the earlier videos? No problem:

For more videos and deep dives like this make sure to subscribe to the Cartoonist Kayfabe YouTube channel Read the rest

Akira Animation Cels! Cartoonist Kayfabe Show and Tell

The boys, Ed Piskor, Jim Rugg, and Tom Scioli got hold of a couple animation cels from the classic anime and couldn't help but show them off. A fun glimpse into the analogue way of producing animation. Come for the cels, stay for the Katsuhiro Otomo storyboard books.

Also, in case you missed the Cartoonist Kayfabe coverage of the Akira manga:

Subscribe to the Cartoonist Kayfabe YouTube channel for more vids celebrating the medium of comics. Read the rest

Akira vol. 1, Making a Masterpiece, Cartoonist Kayfabe Series

The main event begins! The boys, Ed Piskor, Jim Rugg, and Tom Scioli give their kayfabe commentary on the first volume of Katsuhiro Otomo's Magnum Opus, Akira!

Get your hands on the newish 35 year anniversary box set and read along!

Two earlier episodes tracked Otomo's previous works leading up to Akira:

Part 1, Fireball

Part 2: Domu: A Child's Dream

Subscribe to the Cartoonist Kayfabe YouTube channel for future episodes Read the rest

Awaken Akira pays tribute to animated classic

Ash Thorp and Zaoeyo animated this stunning tribute to Katsuhuro Otomo's animated Akira. It's so perfect it could be the trailer for a sequel or remake—and had plently of folks briefly fooled.

Its creation took over a year, as we had to coordinate our time on it with other project commitments. We hope you find it was well worth the wait and truly enjoy our efforts. We would like to thank Pilotpriest for the masterful score, as well as Raf Grassetti and The Joelsons for their help on the project. We would also like to give our most sincere thank you to Otomo-san and all the men and women who helped bring Akira to life. Akira has and will always be a timeless and continual muse for all of us.

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Blog of obscure Akira production art

Subject-28 presentes sketches, cels and animation tests from Katsuhiro Otomo's 1988 masterpiece, Akira. A huge and beautifully-presented selection. [via]

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Over 2000 pages, the Akira series is a sci-fi epic

See sample pages of Akira at Wink.

At the far too early age of seven I watched Katsuhiro Otomo’s film Akira. In a time before the internet, my parents had made the mistake of thinking that since it was a cartoon it couldn’t be that bad. If you’ve seen the movie you know just how wrong my parents were. If you haven’t, what followed was two hours of high-octane animated violence, drugs, and mind-bending psychokinesis. Being too young to really appreciate what many critics believe to be one of the greatest animated movies of all time, which helped bring Japanese anime into American culture, I retreated to the warm comfort of Disney. Thankfully as I got older I rediscovered this great movie, and this even better comic series.

This isn’t me just saying “Well, I read the book which is far better than the movie.” (Imagine me saying that with a snooty condescending accent). The movie barely skims the surface of the comics. It would be like if HBO took all the Game of Thrones books and turned them into a single two-hour special.

Spanning over 2000 pages the Akira series is a sci-fi epic. The story follows a teenage delinquent as he unknowingly gets caught up in psychic warfare that leads to an all-out revolution. Like the amphetamine that the main characters eat like candy, you’ll get addicted to this book – also, you might lose your teeth, but that could be unrelated.

Dark Horse did an exquisite job reprinting the comics into six volumes (although I did notice a typo in Volume 2 on page 228, so someone might want to contact Dark Horse about that). Read the rest

Watch: Bartkira (Akira meets The Simpsons)

"The future is not a straight line. It is filled with many crossroads." Read the rest