Wolfgang Petersen's Live-Action 'Paprika' Adaptation Is On 'The Fast Track'

PaprikaWolfgang Petersen proved he had an eye for the fantastic with 1984's "The Neverending Story," but the imagery in the source material for his live-action "Paprika" adaptation may take him into scenes that look more like "Akira" or David Cronenberg's "Scanners." The "Troy" and "Poseidon" director loved "Paprika" as an anime, and the treatment he recently received could become a wide release that he compares to "The Matrix."

"We have a young writer on it, and he just delivered a very specific and detailed treatment that we’re working on," Petersen told MTV News. "And then if that’s a go then he will write the screenplay and that will go very fast because the treatment is already very detailed. So I’m very excited about that. I would say it’s on the fast track."

The "Paprika" story, which originally began as a 1993 novel by Yasutaka Tsutsui, but has since seen life in manga in the 2006 anime film by Satoshi Kon, which sounds like it sold Petersen on the new adaptation.

"The original one -- the anime that I saw -- my people here they came to me and said had a look at this," he explained. "And I saw it and bingo, I thought this is fantastic. This is a great piece. That will be a very very interesting movie."

Though the screenplay hasn't been written yet, Petersen believes his new psychological sci-fi film has enough potential that's he's willing to compare to one of the biggest action films of all time.

"We open it up a little bit more so it’s more accessible for a wide audience, but it comes a little bit sort of "Matrix" feel," he said. "Not like Matrix but sort of the size of it all, the scope of it all. So that it becomes more of a film for a mainstream audience."

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