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James Cameron is getting Robert Rodriguez to direct Alita: Battle Angel

10.14.2015

James Cameron is too busy spending his time in Pandora to ever direct BATTLE ANGEL ALITA. It doesn't matter how much he's been intrigued by the manga graphic novel series from Yukito Kishiro. He's got AVATAR sequels out the wazoo for the next few years that it never appeared to be destined for his front burner.

But he could always produce and hand the property off to someone else to handle, which now looks to be the case. That way, he can have his cake and eat it, too. Word is quickly spreading that Cameron, his Lightstorm Entertainment partner Jon Landau and 20th Century Fox are currently engaged in talks for Robert Rodriguez to be at the helm for this particular adaptation.

Now titled ALITA: BATTLE ANGEL, Rodriguez's film will tell the story of a female cyborg discovered in the scrapyard by a scientist in the 26th century. Unable to remember anything but her martial arts training, the rebuilt character becomes a bounty hunter (Hunter-Warrior, to be exact) that tracks down dangerous criminals. While the action aspect of the source material should certainly be right up Rodriguez's alley, you know it was the themes of love and self-discovery that really intrigued Cameron this whole time, making their partnership quite interesting as they can hopefully help each other in realizing this property for the big screen.

Cameron had the following to say, regarding the collaboration with Rodriguez on a project he's been jazzed about for years.

Robert and I have been looking for a film to do together for years, so I was pumped when he said he wanted to do Battle Angel. He’s very collaborative and we’re already like two kids building a go-kart, just having fun riffing creatively and technically. This project is near and dear to me, and there’s nobody I trust more than Robert, with his technical virtuosity and rebel style, to take over the directing reins. We’re looking forward to learning a lot from each other while we make a kick-ass epic.

In traditional fashion, Rodriguez offered up his own kind words about Cameron and what they hope to do together.

Battle Angel is an incredibly rich and vibrant epic in the tradition of Jim Cameron’s spectacular, character-driven films. Getting to work from Jim’s terrific and visionary script while learning the cutting edge techniques he’s pioneered is a master class in filmmaking. It’s an honor to explore the world of Alita along with Jim and Jon, whose films have impacted me for decades.

Both Cameron and Rodriguez have their strengths and weaknesses, and this pairing may just wind up working to each of their benefits to make an interesting flick. I'm hopeful that things could work out in that fashion, because we're the ones who wind up celebrating the reward of a cool movie.

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