Iron Man 3’s Shane Black is Keeping ‘Death Note’ Alive

By Jorge Solis

With the release of “Iron Man 3” just one week away, what is writer/director Shane Black going to do next? With the third sequel sure to kick off a summer of blockbusters, Black can actually choose any project he wants. Could his next movie possibly be a live-action movie adaptation of the Japanese manga, “Death Note”?

According to Bleeding Cool, Black mentioned, “Right now, I’ve got this thing at Warner Bros. called ’Death Note’ that I like a lot. It’s a Japanese manga that’s very tense and really cool.” Though little is said, this gives much hope to fans of the book.

The “Death Note” series follows Light Yagami, a high school student who accidentally discovers a supernatural notebook. The Death Note grants its user the ability to kill anyone just by writing their name in the book. When Light attempts to cleanse the world of the criminal population, he attracts the unwanted attention of a master detective known only as L.  Widely popular in Japan, “Death Note” was made into three movies and an anime series.

Black was originally announced to helm the adaptation in 2011. Why keep the project alive after so long? “It’s my favorite manga. I was just struck by its unique and brilliant sensibility,” Black told Deadline back in 2011. “What we want to do is take it back to that manga, and make it closer to what is, so complex and truthful about the spirituality of the story, versus taking the concept and trying to copy it as an American thriller.”

Back in 2011, there were even casting rumors of Zac Efron being approached to play Light. In order for “Death Note” to work, you really need two great leads to carry the film. After watching “Me and Orson Welles,” I was willing to look away from “High School Musical” and take Efron seriously as Light. With talk about reviving the project, maybe Efron’s name will be attached again.

If “Iron Man 3” is a success at the box office, does that mean “Death Note” will move forward? As a fan of the “Death Note” movies, I definitely hope so. With Shane Black’s track record, from the “Lethal Weapon” movies to “Iron Man 3,”  I’m betting his live action adaptation will surely be worth seeing.

“Iron Man 3” will be released in theaters on May 3, 2013.

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