The effects of the novel coronavirus have led to many anime productions being postponed or outright cancelled due to greater efforts to practice social distancing and quarantine practices. Fans have seen how many of the seasonal and ongoing weekly series have been delayed for the foreseeable future, but now a major classic has broken its run of over 40 years due to the impact of the COVID-19 disease. Sazae-san, Japan's longest running and most popular anime series, has announced it will be suspending its new episode airings beginning on May 17th.
According to a report from Anime News Network, the staff behind Sazae-san revealed that the situation from the novel coronavirus have made continued production of the anime a bad idea. The series will reveal it's return date on the official website for the anime as soon as it's available. Until then, Sazae-san will begin airing reruns with the May 17th airing of the series.
Sazae-san is an anime based on a managa from Machiko Hasegawa that began airing in Japan back in 1969. The series airs on a weekly basis, and is often the highest ranked animated series in Japan each week. The anime even earned a Guinness World Record for the longest running animated series. It continued this impressive weekly streak for quite a while until 1975, where the anime had to take a temporary break.
A rise in production costs back in 1975 meant that production had to be held off for a month on the anime, but the weekly series has been airing ever since. Meaning that this delay due to the impact of COVID-19 will be the first hiatus for the series in 45 years. According to Anime News Network the voice actress behind the titular Sazae Fugata, Midori Kato, stated on Radio Nikkei's "Chuo Keiba Jikkyo Chukei" show last April that the Sazae-san anime had stopped voice recording sessions indefinitely due to concerns over COVID-19. But she noted how she's doing fine!
Are you shocked to see that even Sazae-san has been delayed due to the effects of the novel coronavirus? How do you feel about the slate of delays so far? Which anime delay hit you the hardest? Are you excited for when all of the anime make their comeback when the staff and cast can work safely? Let us know your thoughts in the comments or talk to me directly about all things anime and other cool stuff @Valdezology on Twitter!