By Andreas Placakis / October 18th, 2018
Crunchyroll and Funimation Entertainment announced on Thursday that their partnership with to share content will end on Friday, November 9. The streaming channel bundle service VRV, owned by Crunchyroll parent company Ellation, also announced that it will no longer have the FunimationNow streaming service as part of its VRV Premium Subscription, or as an individual channel subscription, as of November 9. Instead, the bundle will add the HIDIVE streaming service.
In addition, Funimation confirmed that it will begin regularly offering subtitled simulcasts beginning “as early as” the winter 2019 season. Free users will be able to watch the subtitled versions of several hundred shows, but Funimation will not relaunch its subtitle-only subscription tier.
Funimation’s president and CEO Gen Fukunaga said that FunimationNow subscribers will gain access to the subtitled versions of “several hundred” titles on November 9, but will lose a “handful” of dubbed titles. Crunchyroll also noted that some titles will leave both services, and that the companies will be updated later regarding which titles will be impacted.
Fukunaga said that all titles licensed during the partnership will still be shared between the two companies. He also stated that Funimation’s decision to end the partnership was due to its acquisition by Sony Pictures Television Networks last year, as Sony is investing in Funimation to make it a “global sub and dub anime brand.” Fukunaga said that the partnership “ended amicably this month.”
Update: Hidive, another anime streaming service, has announced they will be joining streaming umbrella VRV after Funimation announced their decision to end their partnership with Crunchyroll, which were both being offered by VRV. VRV users will be able to stream Hidive’s library of over 500 titles, including exclusives like Bloom Into You and Legend of the Galactic Heroes. A VRV spokesperson said the Hidive channel will be available “within the next few weeks.”