A new One Piece movie is reportedly on the way in celebration of the series' 20th anniversary.
One Piece was first adapted to anime in 1999, and has gone on to become one of the world's longest-running and most popular Shonen series. In celebration of that ongoing success, The folks at Shuisha and Toei Animation are reportedly working on an all new anime film, expected some time in the summer of 2019. The news broke on One-Piece.com, and was announced to English-speaking fans on Twitter by Greg Werner, a columnist for the site.
According to the announcement, the new movie will get a theatrical release. It directly follows One Piece Film: Z and One Piece Film: Gold, both of which featured series creator Eiichiro Oda in an oversight position. There is no word on how Oda might be involved in the upcoming movie, but th fans have their hopes up.
In addition, fans on Twitter suspect that the movie tie into recent events in both the manga and the anime, joining it seamlessly to canonical storylines.
"Have a feeling they'll use Rocks in this movie like how he set up Shiki in the manga," one fan responded to Warner.
Have a feeling they'll use Rocks in this movie like how he set up Shiki in the manga.— Matt Kirchner (@MKirchner12) August 25, 2018
"That makes a lot of sense," added another.
Elsewhere, other fans expected the new movie to be relatively isolated, as anime films tend to be.
"Movie don't affect anime that much, because most of the people who work on this are freelancers," someone tweeted. "Special[s] affect it more, like with the east blue one. Skypiea didn't affected this that much because it was mostly outsourced to studio guts that is helping with op."
Movie dont affect anime that much, because most of the people who work on this are freelancers, special affects it more, like with east blue one. Skypiea didnt affected this that much because it was mostly outsourced to studio guts that is helping with op.— Kosi mazaki (@M4triXxXxX) August 25, 2018
One Piece's Episode of Skypiea, or Episode of Sky Island, debuted in Japan on Saturday, Aug. 25, just before the announcement was made. The special brought the series' beloved Skypiea arc together in one cohesive, movie-length animation. This made the story shorter and easier to digest for new fans, who face the daunting task of wading through hundreds of episodes if they want to get up to date on One Piece.
The special also updated the Skypiea arc to the latest animation style -- a move that got mixed reviews from long-time fans. While some love to see the action rendered in the smooth, modern fashion, others longed for the nostalgia factor of the old episodes.
One Piece: Episode of Skypiea simulcasted in Japanese with English subtitles. It is available on Funimation, Anime Lab and Crunchyroll.