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Hughes brothers in talks for ‘Akira’

'Eli' duo eye Warner Bros. adaptation

Fresh from directing “The Book of Eli,” Allen and Albert Hughes are in talks with Warner Bros. to direct its live-action “Akira,” based on Katsuhiro Otomo’s graphic novel.

Studio’s move to sign the Hughes brothers comes two years after it acquired the rights with Legendary Pictures from publisher Kodansha and set it up with Andrew Lazar’s Mad Chance with Appian Way’s Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson Killoran.

Script has been penned by Mark Fergus & Hawk Ostby and Gary Whitta (who penned “Eli’) and set in New Manhattan, a metropolis that was rebuilt after being destroyed 31 years earlier.

The Hughes brothers’ last directing project before “Eli” was 2001’s “From Hell,” starring Johnny Depp.

“Akira” was first adapted as a feature in 1988 as an animated film, which Otomo directed. Otomo will exec produce the new “Akira.”

“Eli” was produced by Alcon Entertainment and Silver Pictures with Warner Bros. handling the domestic release. It’s topped $84 million in box office in less than a month.

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