By Patrick Aguda / November 19th, 2018
Funimation has announced that they have licensed the new Fruits Basket anime and will stream the series on FunimationNow. They have also licensed the new anime for an eventual home video release. The new Fruits Basket anime is set to premiere in Japan in 2019 and will air on TV TOKYO and other stations. Funimation has also confirmed that the new anime will indeed cover the manga’s entire story.
The new anime will be produced by TMS Entertainment and features an entirely new staff and cast. Natsuki Takaya, the author of the Fruits Basket manga, will serve as Executive Supervisor for the anime.
The announced cast and staff for the anime is as follows:
- Executive Supervisor: Natsuki Takaya (Author of the Fruits Basket manga originally published by Hakusensha’s Hana to Yume Comics)
- Director: Yoshihide Ibata
- Series Structure: Taku Kishimoto
- Character Design: Masaru Shindo
- Animation Produced by: TMS Entertainment
- Manaka Iwami as Tohru Honda
- Nobunaga Shimazaki as Yuki Sohma
- Yuma Uchida as Kyo Sohma
- Yuichi Nakamura as Shigure Sohma
Natsuki Takaya also gave some comments on how she feels about the new series and some aspects she wanted for the new anime’s production. You can check out her full comments below.
First of all, I’d like to offer my sincere congratulations to the staff for bringing us to this announcement day.
I may be the manga author, but at the same time, I’m only the manga author.
So I think this announcement is a long-awaited recognition of the efforts of all of those directly involved in the anime’s production, and that’s a relief to me.
As for how I felt when I was first approached about this new series, to be perfectly frank, my reaction was, “What?!”
As for the reason why, well… It’s a bit of a long story… It’s a personal thing that goes back to when I reached my 20th year as a professional artist.
To commemorate that anniversary, a team made a “voice comic” DVD of Fruits Basket’s final chapter.
(It was a prize sent to all the readers who applied for it, and was not on sale.)
To quote the comments I wrote for the DVD pamphlet…
My editor asked me if there was anything I wanted to do to celebrate my 20th year in the profession, and I kept replying, “No, don’t worry about it; I don’t have anything I particularly want.”
But then one day, on the spur of the moment I casually said, “I’d love to sit alone somewhere and read (well, listen) to the final chapter of Furuba with sound, with voices, and with the song ‘For Fruits Basket’ playing, and bawl my eyes out.” I was being glib, just sort of building castles in the air and not looking for anything to come of it, but it sparked this project.
Just as there were happy or fun times while I was writing Fruits Basket, there were painful or sad ones as well.
There were plenty of times when I cried and thought, “I want to quit Fruits Basket.”
And that’s exactly why with this voice comic, I feel like I’m getting the chance to arrive at the final chapter of Furuba again, but this time without the pressure.
I’m really and truly reaching the final chapter at last. I feel like I can finally relax.
……So as you can see, with that voice comic I thought I’d finally found closure, and brought down the curtain on that chapter of my life. My heart was full of all sorts of emotions.
Later, when the Collector’s Edition came out, I also finally got to feel that I was able to depict the younger generation.
……And a new anime means going back to the beginning.
“What?! I closed the curtain on this and now you want to open it again?!?! (lol)”
I never once felt negatively about the project or thought that I didn’t want to do it, but still, my first thought was “What?!” (lol)
So, I made several requests right off the bat.
One of those was to do it with a completely new team.
Completely new. Every single person.
I told [the producers], if you want to open the curtain again, then please make it all new. Please rebuild the Furuba world from scratch, with new everything.
Another request was to not make the art look too much like my art.
This was partly because my Furuba art is old now, pure and simple, and also largely because I was in poor health back then (you can find more details about that in the afterword to the Collector’s Edition, if you’re curious), so my drawing was awfully shaky. Because of that, I wanted them to rebuild the art as well.
Other than that… Well, it was a mix. On some things I gave them detailed thoughts, and on others I gave them my blessing to do as they liked.
The production staff promptly accepted my requests and worked to meet them, and I’m truly grateful to them all. Thank you again.
They also readily gave me permission to visit the recording sessions sometimes, which makes me so happy. I don’t actually do anything there; I’m just an observer. (Really, I don’t do anything.)
It’s a pure delight, getting to see the reels a little early like that.
Creating art that people can truly care about is an overwhelming challenge. When it happens, I feel as grateful for it as I would for a miracle.
I wish for them to maintain their respect for the previous work, while on top of that creating the kind of work that will newly touch as many people as possible.
I’ll be a viewer just like the rest of you when the broadcast begins, and I’m looking forward to it.
A synopsis for the anime’s story is as follows:
High school student Tohru Honda begins living alone in a tent after she loses her mother, who was her only remaining family member.
However, it turns out that the land she pitches her tent on is part of the distinguished Sohma family estate!
When Shigure Sohma sees the value of her housekeeping skills, Tohru ends up living with Yuki Sohma, who is essentially the prince of her school, and Kyo Sohma, who regards Yuki as the enemy.
Still, there’s something Tohru doesn’t know yet: the Sohma family has been bound for centuries by a horrible curse…
Fruits Basket is a manga written by Natsuki Takaya. It ran in Hakusensha’s Hana to Yume magazine from 1998 to 2006. The manga is currently licensed for release in North America by Yen Press. The series has previously inspired a 2001 anime adaptation that ran for 26 episodes. The 2001 anime was also licensed for release in North America by Funimation.
The new Fruits Basket anime is set to air in 2019. It will cover the manga’s entire story and will stream in North America on FunimationNow. Are you ready for this manga’s new upcoming anime adaptation?
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