Cowboy Bebop Going Live-Action?

Cowboy Bebop may be the next anime franchise to be made over as a live-action movie. iF Magazine (www.ifmagazine.com) reports that A Scanner Darkly producer Erwin Stoff is developing a feature based on the property for 20th Century Fox. He apparently spilled the beans while promoting his upcoming NBC drama, Kings, at the network’s TCA presentation. The Bebop project is in the very early stages of development.

‘I have such an enormous admiration for its creators, that our first and foremost concern is going to be a real degree of faithfulness to the tone of the movie, to the mix of genres, and so on and so forth,’ Stoff told iF. ‘When I met with them in Japan, one of the first things that I brought up was the experience that we had on A Scanner Darkly, and how hard we worked to remain faithful to Philip K. Dick, and that was our big concern here.’

Speculation that Keanu Reeves is a frontrunner for role of Spike is supported by Stoff’s long-running relationship with the actor. Reeves starred in A Scanner Darkly, as well as the Stoff-produced pics Sweet November, The Replacements, Constantine, The Lake House, Street Kings and the upcoming remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still. Stoff was also a co-producer on the 1991 comedy Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey, and an exec producer on The Matrix.

Fox has a live-action version of the popular manga and anime property Dragonball set for theatrical release on April 3, 2009. DreamWorks plans to make a stereoscopic 3-D, live-action movie based on Masamune Shirow’s manga/anime series Ghost in the Shell, and actor Leonardo DiCaprio has reportedly teamed with Warner Bros. to produce a live-action version of Katsuhiro Otomo’s anime masterpiece Akira.