Posted on Monday, April 6th, 2009 by Peter Sciretta
Our friends at FirstShowing report that Mandalay have picked up the rights to develop a big-screen live action adaptation of the version of the Japanese manga/anime series Full Metal Panic. I haven’t heard of the series before tonight, but apparently it tells the story of a member of the covert anti-terrorist mercenary group who is tasked with protecting a Japanese high school girl with mystical powers. If the one-sentence log-line doesn’t immediately grab you, chances are you’ll be completely turned off by the fact that High School Musical Zac Efron is interested in starring in the project. I know I was.
Hollywood’s attempts to translate anime into live-action American feature films have resulted in some spectacular failures – Fist of the North Star, Guyver, Speed Racer, and most recently Dragonball. Does this mean that the live-action American anime adaptation is doomed? Not necessarily. It just means that it isn’t easy to execute.