While Akira was a commercial success in Japan, it had nowhere near the impact on the artform of anime that Citizen Kane had on film. Americans only think of it that way because it was a breakthrough in our market. If you look at it critically, Akira isn't even a terribly good film.
Evangelion has had a more analogous impact on its medium. Kane was best known for its completely new style of directing and later for its enormous impact on later directors, specifically those of France and Italy. Hideaki Anno's directing was similarly innovative within the realm of animation, and, while it has not had the enormity of influence that Citizen Kane had, it's by far the most important work of the past 12 years.