Crunchyroll and Adult Swim are partnering with Alcon Television Group to produce and distribute “Blade Runner — Black Lotus,” an anime series inspired by “Blade Runner 2049,” the Oscar-winning 2017 sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1982 classic.
Adult Swim will have the worldwide rights — excluding Asia — to distribute the 13-episode series, which will air on the network’s anime programming block Toonami. Crunchyroll, an anime-centric streaming service, will handle worldwide distribution for its community of more than 45 million registered users and 2 million paying subscribers.
Produced by animation studio Sola Digital and directed by Shinji Aramaki (“Appleseed”) and Kenji Kamiyama (“Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex”), each episode will run for 30-minutes.
As of now, Crunchyroll and its partners are keeping the plot line of the series under wraps, but producers have confirmed the story will take place in 2032 and will include a few familiar faces from the dystopian “Blade Runner” universe where humans and bio-engineered replicants uneasily coexist.
“I first saw ‘Blade Runner’ in 1982, at age 11. It has remained one of the defining films of my life,” said Jason DeMarco, SVP/creative director of Adult Swim on-air. “To be able to explore more of this universe, with the incredible talent we have on board, is a dream come true.”
Alcon’s Andrew Kosove, Broderick Johnson, Laura Lancaster, Al-Francis Cuenca, and Sola Digital Art’s Joseph Chou will executive produce the project, with Alcon’s Ben Roberts serving as co-executive producer. Production IG’s Mitsuhisa Ishikawa is participating as production advisor.
“Blade Runner — Black Lotus” is one of the several upcoming collaborations between Adult Swim and Crunchyroll, which are both divisions of Warnermedia.
In October, the two companies also debuted the anime “Mob Psycho 100” on Toonami. For Crunchyroll, these two partnerships are its latest foray into broadcast television, which complements its recent TV block in Brazil with RBTV where the platform brought two series dubbed in Portuguese to the Brazilian anime community.