While Jujutsu Kaisen and Attack on Titan: The Final Season are still airing, anime hitmakers MAPPA joins hands with Netflix to create another unique genre-bending epic samurai tale which will premiere around the world on April 29, 2021.
Production and Cast
While much about the show is still being kept under wraps, it has been revealed that LeSean Thomas who has previously worked as a storyboard artist, designer, layout and key animator for shows and films such as Ben 10: Alien Force, The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold and Green Lantern: First Flight, Superman/Batman: Public Enemies, The Legend of Korra and has produced and directed titles like Black Dynamite, Canon Busters will serve as a director and executive-producer of the show.
Chicago International Film Festival winner Lakeith Stanfield will play the lead voice of Yasuke (Dope, Get Out, Sorry to Bother You, Someone Great, Uncut Gems, Knives Out, The Photograph) alongside Grammy Award-nominated artist, Flying Lotus(Blade Runner Black Out 2022, Carole and Tuesday), who will produce the music as well as serve as an executive producer of the show and Takeshi Koike (Redline, Afro Samurai, Lupin the Third: The Woman Called Fujiko Mine) who will oversee the character design of the series.
And last but not least, animation production will be handled by Japanese animation studio, MAPPA(Kids on the Slope, Terror in Resonance, Yuri!!! on Ice, In This Corner of the World, Jujutsu Kaisen, AOT Final Season).
About the Series
Set in a fantastical brutal war-torn feudal era of Japan, where magic exists alongside high technology, the story follows Yasuke, the first foreign-born man to achieve the status of a samurai warrior, came back to his life of sword-fighting and violence to protect a mysterious girl from dark forces.
“There is a serendipitous nature about this project, how an African-American man goes to Japan to live and work amongst the very best in Japanese anime to create an anime about an African who goes to Japan to live amongst the Japanese elite and become a warrior,” LeSean told the media on Monday.”Part of me deep down feels I was meant to create this adventure series with MAPPA, Flying Lotus, LaKeith, and the rest of this talented team.”
He also added,
“Yasuke is a fascinating, mysterious figure in Japanese history [who has] drawn a growing interest in today’s media over the decades. I first learned of Yasuke’s role in Japanese history over a decade or so. The children’s book Kuro-suke by Kurusu Yoshio featured images that piqued my curiosity. To eventually learn that he wasn’t just a fictional character, but a real person, was exciting material for an adventure story. I’m so excited for both longtime fans and newcomers to enjoy our reimagined take on this historical figure,”
Magic and mechs in actual history?
The black protagonist in the anime series?
Science fiction with samurai?
Well, Yasuke! looks like it will be an amazing series that will bend historical allegories alternate with fantastical sci-fi adventure feeling to it.
Don’t miss it.