One Piece Confirms New Filler Arc Featuring Boa Hancock

One Piece's anime is celebrating its monumental 20th Anniversary with a huge new movie, One Piece: Stampede, and to further hype up fans for its August 9th release in Japan the anime will be taking a brief detour for a few episodes. The July 28th and August 4th episodes of the series will be a mini-filler arc tying into the events of the new film, and it features some of the returning faces coming to the film.

One of the biggest returns is Boa Hancock, who will be reuniting with Luffy as the two of them are suddenly attacked by the "world's greatest bounty hunter." The preview for the next episode teased a little of how this will all go down.

Episode 895 of the series is titled, "Side Story! The World's Greatest Bounty Hunter, Cidre!" and sees Luffy reuniting with Hancock as Luffy's fights with Cidre's various goons and cronies had made him cross paths with Hancock, who is seen bathing in a hot spring. It's immediately clear that Hancock is happy to see Luffy again, but she doesn't seem to get to enjoy their reunion for long before Cidre attacks once more.

Hancock is only one of the major returning characters to the anime making an appearance in the new film. Major returns include the confirmed Smoker, Buggy, Rob Lucci, Law, Sabo, and many, many others. Though it's currently not quite clear which characters will be making an appearance in these special filler episodes.

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One Piece: Stampede is currently scheduled to hit theaters August 9th in Japan, but there is currently no word on its release to other territories as of this writing. Fuji TV officially describes the film as such, "The world's greatest exposition of the pirates, by the pirates, for the pirates - the Pirates Festival. Luffy and the rest of the Straw Hat Crew receive an invitation from its host Buena Festa who is known as the Master of Festivities. They arrive to find a venue packed with glamorous pavilions and many pirates including the ones from the Worst Generation. The place is electric."

New characters and cast members for the film include Tsutomu Isobe as Douglas Bullet, Yusuke Santamaria as Buena Festa, Rino Sashihara as Ann, Ryota Yamasato as Donald Moderate, and Chinese fashion model and singer Ron Monroe, YouTuber group Fischer's, and Naoto Takenaka in currently unconfirmed roles.

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