In May of 2003 ADV Films (the North American distributor of the Neon Genesis Evangelion television series) announced a joint collaboration with Gainax and Weta Workshop to bring a live-action adaptation of Evangelion to theaters. While response among fans ranged from cautious optimism to outright excitement, the project has since stalled in what is commonly referred to as 'development hell'.
The project faces ongoing delays for several reasons, including the lack of a suitable director (though several A-list directors have expressed interest), and the busy schedule of the New Zealand-based Weta Workshop, who have been preoccupied with other high-profile productions including King Kong (2005), The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005) and the upcoming Halo (2008). Subsequent appearances of ADV Films co-founder Matt Greenfield have however confirmed the film to be in pre-production, with an estimated release date ranging between 2008 and 2015.
Although the script is not final until a director is selected, the film is expected to be part of a trilogy, and is likely to adapt the first several episodes of the television series. Minor plot changes are expected for aesthetic reasons, such as with the adaptation of The Lord of the Rings trilogy. While Hideaki Anno (the creator of Evangelion) will not direct the picture, it has been suggested that he may be involved in an advisory capacity.