If you cast your mind back to 2015, you may recall that Lionsgate announced a live action adaptation of the bestselling manga series Naruto, attaching director Michael Gracey to the project.
Gracey has since went on to direct the musical hit The Greatest Showman, and during an interview with Collider, the filmmaker offered a brief update on the film’s status, confirming that he is still attached, but revealing that it may still be some time before it is ready to move forward.
“I don’t know [if it will be my next film], to be honest. You know Masashi Kishimoto, who created the original series, he’s just a genius. So many Hollywood adaptations of really popular manga series just don’t get it right, and for me what was really important was that if I was gonna do Naruto, I wanted to actually work with Kishimoto and get a script to a stage where he would look at it and be excited about realizing it. Because no one knows the world better than the person who created it.
“So for me, as it stands, we’re still working on the script. Because until that script is at a level that I’m excited about, I have no interest in destroying an amazing franchise, as has happened before. But I think the great thing is that everyone involved, from Lionsgate to the producers, are all of the same mind. Everyone knows how precious this property is and to me it’s incredibly exciting, and I love the work that I’ve gotten to do on it to date. At this stage, no one is going to go into production until we’ve got a script that excites everyone. So whether it’s my next one or not, I don’t know. We’ll have to wait and see.”
The last we heard on Naruto, Jon and Erich Hoeber (RED) had came in to rewrite the script, but presumably it is still not quite where Gracey and company want it to be before committing to move forward with the film.