The Blade Runner universe is expanding once more with an anime series that will air on Adult Swim in the United States.
The cable channel has partnered with Alcon Television Group and anime streaming outlet Crunchyroll to produce Blade Runner — Black Lotus, a 13-episode series inspired by Blade Runner 2049, the sequel to Ridley Scott’s 1982 classic.
Adult Swim green lighting the series follows Alcon’s deal with Titan Comics to continue the franchise in a series of comic books, with 2049 co-writer Michael Green and Mike Johnson set to write.
Details of the plot are being kept quiet for now, but Black Lotus will be both a sequel to Blade Runner and a prequel to Blade Runner 2049, being set in the year 2032, and will include some familiar characters from the Blade Runner universe.
“I first saw Blade Runner in 1982, at age 11. It has remained one of the defining films of my life,” said Jason DeMarco, senior vp/creative director of Adult Swim on-air. “To be able to explore more of this universe, with the incredible talent we have on board, is a dream come true.”
Adult Swim will have worldwide distribution rights (excluding Asia) to the English-dubbed version of the series and air it in the U.S. as part of its Toonami anime block. Crunchyroll will handle worldwide streaming.
Animation studio Sola Digital Arts will produce the series, with Shinji Aramaki and Kenji Kamiyama directing all episodes. Shinichiro Watanabe (Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo) is a creative producer, having already crafted his own project within the Blade Runner universe, Black Out 2022.