The concerns over the recent outbreak of the COVID-19 virus (colloquially referred to as the Coronavirus) has led to the surprise cancellation of many huge gatherings and conventions over the last couple of months, but one of the many that have definitely hurt anime fans was the cancellation of AnimeJapan 2020. This convention was expected to feature many announcements for the next year of anime projects, and leading the pack was a stage presentation celebrating the 20th Anniversary of Tite Kubo's Bleach featuring returning actors and the creator himself among others.
But while the event itself has been cancelled, Shueisha has confirmed that they will instead hold a special livestream featuring the event (in both English and Japanese) on March 21st at 9:45 AM Japan time. The official website itself has begun a special countdown for the announcement featuring quick glimpses at many of the series' fan favorite heroes and villains, and Shueisha has already prepared a special placeholder YouTube video for fans to keep an eye on.
As to what we can expect from the special presentation, it's not entirely clear just yet. When the presentation was announced, it was teased to have a special project in the works for the franchise's 20th Anniversary. This had fans hoping that a new anime project would be announced especially considering that Ichigo Kurosaki voice actor, Masakazu Morita, Byakuya Kuchiki actor Ryotaro Okiayu, and Rukia Kuchiki actress Fumiko Orikasa were going to be in attendance along with Weekly Shonen Jump editor-in-chief Hiroyuki Nakano.
Along with this tease, Tite Kubo revealed that he would show off the first glimpse at his next project during the event as well. Whether or not this was explicitly Bleach related is unclear, but now that there's a specific date alongside a livestream, fans everywhere will soon know more about what's next to come from the franchise.
But with many asking for the return of the anime ever since it was cut short years ago, there might be just a bit more of a ferocious asking for new anime more than anything else, really. Given Bleach has been gone for so long, perhaps any kind of new project would be received well? But what do you think?
What are you hoping to see from Bleach's 20th Anniversary presentation? Are you hoping for a return from the anime? A sequel series? Let us know your thoughts in the comments or talk to me directly about all things anime and other cool things @Valdezology on Twitter!