Naruto Shippuden came to a close earlier this year, but fans didn’t have to wait long before the franchise returned. Boruto: Naruto Next Generations made its debut in April, and the anime has already won over new and returning audiences. However, it seems as if fans nearly didn’t get to enjoy the sequel at all.
During a joint interview with Weekly Shonen Jump, creator Masashi Kishimoto sat down with Boruto’s illustrator Mikio Ikemoto to talk about their tenure on Naruto. It was there the latter admitted he originally signed on continue Naruto as a reboot rather than a sequel.
“As the Naruto serialization was coming to an end, we talked about how it would be neat if the series could be rebooted and drawn by a new artist just like an American comic,” Ikemoto revealed. “At that point, it was just talk, and I hadn’t been working on my own thumbnails for a long time.
Continuing, the artist said, “We talked it over for a good six months to a year. If it was just going to be a sequel, then Kishimoto should definitely draw it. Plus if it’s a continuation, you’re bound to whatever came before. But with a reboot, you can do whatever you want and nobody can complain. I really liked that aspect of it. But when I received the story, it was totally just a sequel. And, at that point, I was in too deep to escape.”
Kishimoto chimed in as well, saying he was approached by the publisher Shueisha about continuing Naruto after its manga wrapped.
“When I ended Naruto, Shueisha asked me if I was interested in continuing the story,” the creator said. “I had done everything I wanted to do with the series, so I wasn’t up for it. I was with ending it at that point, but if Mikio-kun was drawing the sequel, then I was okay with it. I told them it had to be him.”
When it comes down to it, fans tend to be more okay with Naruto having a sequel than a reboot; The long-running franchise is a classic one, so it would be difficult to to improve upon or change it. The notion of Naruto getting a Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood remake is intriguing, but many have vocalized their concerns about tampering with Kishimoto’s original vision for Naruto.
A sequel may be susceptible to comparison complaints, but Boruto has done well to honor its predecessor while maintaining its own identity. The manga is currently knee-deep in a complicated story arc as its anime prepares to adapt a fan-favorite manga spin-off known as Naruto Gaiden. The sequel may not have been what Ikemoto or Kishimoto asked for, but it looks like the series is doing well despite their hesitance. So, it’s unsurprising to hear that fans hope the series stays that way.
You can check out the synopsis for Boruto: Naruto Next Generations below:
“The village of Konoha has managed to change, modernized next to an era of peace. Raising high constructions, large computer monitors of transmission of images (televisions last generation), divisions and divisions (streets) connected to run (to mobilize) electric cars, The way to live in the ninja era has changed ...
The leader of the village is, the seventh Hokage.
Boruto will meet new friends, and there will be an incident mystery how he will face this challenge, inside the heart of the whole team, now the story of "Boruto Uzumaki,” begins.”