– by Joseph Jammer Medina

If there’s one thing Hollywood rarely is, it’s fast. Many projects spend years — decades even — stuck in development hell. These are projects that take millions of dollars of investment, and no one wants to throw their money down on a gamble. BATTLE ANGEL ALITA is a manga that director James Cameron has had the rights to for quite some time now. As Cameron has had his mind on Pandora for the better part of a decade, it’s a project he hasn’t gotten around to. Luckily, he’s recruited genre filmmaker Robert Rodriguez to take over directing duties for the film adaptation.

It’s been about six months since Rodriguez has signed on, and it’s been all quiet on the western front as far as news is concerned, but now THR is reporting that Rodriguez and Cameron are zeroing in on their lead for the flick.

On this shortlist of actors is Maika Monroe (IT FOLLOWS, INDEPENDENCE DAY: RESURGENCE), Rosa Salazar (MAZE RUNNER: THE SCORCH TRIALS, CHiPs), and Zendaya (SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING).

From left to right: Zendaya, Maika Monroe, Rosa Salazar

From left to right: Zendaya, Maika Monroe, Rosa Salazar

The outlet went on to state that both Cameron and Rodriguez have high hopes for the film. Not only do they expect the film to do well, but they hope to use it as a vehicle to launch its star to the next level of fame, not unlike what Cameron’s DARK ANGEL did for Jessica Alba. 

The report doesn’t stop there. THR continued, saying that Zendaya is the frontrunner, but that her commitments to her TV show, BLACKISH, are creating some issues. We’ll have to wait and see what direction they end up going.

For those unfamiliar with the source material, ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL is based on the Japanese manga BATTLE ANGEL ALITA, which was created by Yukito Kishiro. The synopsis from volume 1 is as follows on Amazon:

“When Doc Ido, a talented cyberphysician, finds Alita’s head in a junk heap, she has lost all memory of her past life. But when he reconstructs her, she discovers her body still instinctively remembers the Panzer Kunst, the most powerful cyborg fighting technique ever known. In the postapocalyptic world of the Scrapyard, as the secrets of Alita’s past unfold, each day is a struggle for survival.”

Who do you think you should be cast as Alita? Let us know in the comments down below!

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Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.