There are few words more feared by anime fans than the phrase live-action adaptation. Over the years, Hollywood has managed to butcher its adaptation attempts, and Japan’s success rate has also varied. Bleach will be one of the next series tackled by Warner Bros. Japan, and fans are understandably nervous.
However, if the story’s creator has anything to say, it is that the live-action adaptation is a faithful one.
Recently, Tite Kubo sat down with Sandwich’s Man Weekly Radio show over on TBS Radio. The artist talked extensively about his work on Bleach, and Kubo touched upon its various live-action plans. After discussing Hollywood’s now-failed plans for Ichigo Kurosaki, Kubo turned his attention to the adaptation that recently finished wrapping.
“For the Japanese live-action version, I feel that we have come close to the original work,” Kubo said. “I am really looking forward to it."
Of course, fans will still be wary of the adaptation, but it is nice to hear that Kubo is throwing his weight behind the adaptation. The artist is rather protective of Bleach, and Kubo said he all but shut down the franchise’s Hollywood debut because it didn’t sit well with him.
During his recent interview, the creator said the U.S. take on Bleach was good but had little to do with his story. The film’s massive budget was gained at the cost of integrity, and Kubo said he requested lots of script corrections from Warner Bros. before he signed off on anything. Ultimately, the rights to the franchise turned over, and Warner Bros. Japan took over the adaptation. The film wrapped production last year, and its first teaser dropped back in July.
So far, opinions about the film have been mixed with fans; The teaser did impress audiences thanks to Ichigo Kurosaki's looks, but its special effects fell flat. It is no easy task to bring Hollows to life, and many fans have questioned if Japan has the CGI capabilities and budgeting to make the corrupt souls look properly terrifying. There is no set release date for the adaptation either, but the teaser did say Bleach is eyeing a 2018 premiere as of right now.