Shinichiro Watanabe who has garnered fame from his directorial work on both Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo has directed a brand new animated film based on the cult classic sci-fi film Blade Runner. The new film is titled Blade Runner Black Out 2022 and will be released by Sony Pictures Japan. No release date has been given at this time, however a neat sneak peak of the film that features commentary by Watanabe himself has been uploaded to YouTube.
In the footage Watanabe says, “Working as an anime professional, the film that’s had the most influence on my work has to be Blade Runner.” The influence of Blade Runner is very obvious in Wantanabe’s work on the classic anime series Cowboy Bebop. However this will not be the director’s first time devolping an anime based on an existing film universe. In 2003 Watanabe provided a short for The Animatrix which many fans consider to be one of the better films in the franchise.
It is certainly exciting to see one of the most influential films in sci-fi getting the anime treatment. This news also comes with a wave of promotional push for the new highly anticipated Blade Runner movie starring Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford, Blade Runner 2049. The film is set for release October 6th and is directed by Oscar nominated director Dennis Villeneuve.
However, both films have big shoes to fill when following up such a beloved film as the original Blade Runner. The original Blade Runner was released in June of 1982 and starred Harrison Ford and was directed by sci-fi legend Ridley Scott. The film asks difficult questions about artificial intelligence and has garnered such a huge following due to it’s subject matter and fantastic set design. The film has certainly made an impact on anime, inspiring films such as Ghost in the Shell and countless others.
Are you an anime fan? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @wtfgamersonly.