Warning: Scenes towards the end of Nope will be discussed

Jordan Peele’s excellent third feature film Nope, which uInterview awarded Five out of Five stars, is still playing in theaters and is now available to rent on VOD platforms as well. As more people are watching the film, we’re learning about its many influences from directors like Steven Spielberg, to masters of thrillers like Stanley Kubrick and Alfred Hitchcock.

Another influence that was apparent to anime and manga fans was the Japanese manga and its accompanying 1988 feature adaptation Akira. This cyberpunk action-thriller followed a motorcycle gang leader whose childhood friend suddenly gains telekinetic powers, which then morph into something that could threaten the entire city of Neo-Tokyo.

Fans of Akira who were in theaters for Nope were quickly able to identify a scene in the latter which was clearly a direct homage to the former. This was in a shot where Keke Palmer’s character Emerald Haywood was being chased by the film’s alien monster antagonist on an electric motorcycle.

The shot of Palmer swerving the motorcycle to a stop looks almost exactly like the blocking and framing of a similar shot of Akira protagonist Shōtarō Kaneda. Peele confirmed this reference to be legitimate in a recent IGN interview, where he laughed excitedly about getting to his own spin on the iconic shot.

The clip, which also shows a comparison of the two shots, included Peele gleefully saying, “I got to do it, man! Oh my God!”

Big fans of Peele may remember that he was in talks to do a live-action adaptation of Akira for Warner Bros. way back in 2017 after the success of Get Out, but he turned down the opportunity to continue creating his own original films.

As cool as it would’ve been to see Peele approach this source material, it’s great to know that he made the choice to bet on his own ideas and ended up seeing great success from them.

Leave a comment

Subscribe to the uInterview newsletter

Read more about: