It looks like Sword Art Online is seriously making its U.S. debut. According to a brand-new report, the live-action anime series has been sold to Netflix and is determined to forgo any whitewashing controversies.
Recently, Laeta Kalogridis sat down with Collider to talk about her work on Altered Carbon for Netflix. It was there she confirmed Sword Art Online has been sold to Netflix and that it will have Asian actors play its leads.
Kalogridis, who is writing the Sword Art Online adaptation, got in-depth about the series in her interview. The producer said Netflix is on-board with her whitewashing aversion and wants to remain faithful to the franchise.
“SAO is an essentially Japanese property, in which Kirito and Asuna, who are the two leads, are Japanese. In the television show, Kirito and Asuna will be played by Asian actors,” she said.
“When I sold it to Netflix, we were all on the same page. They are not interested in whitewashing it, and I am not interested in whitewashing it. In terms of the secondary characters, because the game is meant to be global, the way it's presented in the anime and in the light novels, there are secondary characters that clearly are from other parts of the world, like Klein and Agil.”
Not long ago, Kalogridis told the Philippine Daily Inquirer Sword Art Online had been bought by Netflix. She told the publication part of the deal hinged on the fact that Kirito and Asuna would remain Asian in the adaptation.
For those unfamiliar with Sword Art Online, the series was originally created by Reki Kawahara with illustrations provided by abec. The series follows a boy named Kirito after he and thousands of gamers get trapped in a virtual reality video game known as Sword Art Online. The gamers must band together to defeat the game’s final level to escape, but Kirito and his guild learn there is more behind their prison than they were originally told.
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