Space Adventure Cobra is to Alexandre Aja (Piranha 3D, The Hills Have Eyes, High Tension) as Battle Angel Alita is to James Cameron. For years they've said the projects are coming, but not any time soon. After making some noise about the sci-fi manga/anime series in 2011, Aja has commented again on its status while promoting his adaptation of Joe Hill's Horns, opening this October with Daniel Radcliffe as the lead.
"It's a huge, huge project. Super expensive. Like $150 million-plus. It can only be done with a major movie star and most of them are not available for like five years. So we're still working and trying to make it happen."
Back in 2011, the plan was for Aja and collaborator Gregory Levasseur to co-write the script.
Though a few samples of Space Adventure Cobra did make it to North America, and it even got mixed into the line of Gobot toys, Space Adventure Cobra is one of a number of anime globally popular, with little American recognition. And, Aja's native France is one of the spots where Cobra was a hit... attracting devotees like Luc Besson.
The eponymous Cobra is basically Jean-Paul Belmondo as a pirate fighting space bounty hunters with a Psycho-gun laser arm. It's as shamelessly pulpy as that sounds. The original Buichi Terasawa manga ran in Weekly Shonen Jump from 1978 to 1984, back when the home of Naruto could get away with the ultra-violent Fist of the North Star, and the pervy Terasawa was far from restrained in his vision of robot women and far future ladies' wear.
Episodes of the recent Cobra anime remake can be viewed on Crunchyroll, and Right Stuf recently released the original TV series.