Blade Runner – Black Lotus, an animated series inspired by the Oscar-winning movie Blade Runner 2049, is coming to Adult Swim. Alcon Television Group, a division of Alcon Entertainment, has teamed with WarnerMedia’s Adult Swim and Crunchyroll to produce and distribute the new anime series.
Blade Runner – Black Lotus will feature 13 half-hour episodes produced by animation studio Sola Digital Arts (Ultraman). The series plot is being kept under wraps, but producers have confirmed the story will take place in 2032 and will include some familiar characters from the Blade Runner universe.
Shinji Aramaki (Appleseed) and Kenji Kamiyama (Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex) will direct all episodes of the premiere season, following their current directorial work on the upcoming Ghost in the Shell series reboot. Shinichiro Watanabe (Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo) is a creative producer.
Adult Swim will have the worldwide rights (excluding Asia) to distribute the English dubbed versions of the series and will air the English dubbed episodes on the network’s popular anime programming block Toonami. Crunchyroll will handle worldwide streaming for its community of more than 45 million registered users and 2 million subscribers.
Alcon’s Andrew Kosove, Broderick Johnson, Laura Lancaster, Al-Francis Cuenca, and Sola Digital Art’s Joseph Chou will executive produce the project. Alcon exec Ben Roberts will serve as co-executive producer. Production IG’s Mitsuhisa Ishikawa is participating as production advisor.
The Denis Villeneuve-directed Blade Runner 2049, a sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1982 sci-fi classic, was nominated for five Oscar nominations, winning for visual effects and cinematography.
“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.”
“Blade Runner is a seminal work, and its influence permeates the genre,” said Sae Whan Song, head of business development for Crunchyroll. “Adult Swim shares our excitement to bring this new series to fans, and we’re looking forward to building on this franchise together.”
Added Kosove and Johnson, “The Blade Runner universe is an incredibly deep well for story and character with its world and mythology that audiences have been debating and talking about since inception. We are excited to continue exploring that world via this anime series. Lancaster added, “We are thrilled to have Shinji Aramaki, Kenji Kamiyama and Shinichiro Watanabe as our creative partners and look forward to the exciting journey ahead.”
Blade Runner – Black Lotus is among several upcoming collaborations between Adult Swim and Crunchyroll, including the recently debuted Mob Psycho 100 on Toonami.