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Funimation's Higurashi, Familiar of Zero Licenses Expire

posted on by Lynzee Loveridge
No plans to renew or license sequel series

A member of Funimation's acquisitions team, posted on Funimation's forums on Thursday that poor sales of When They Cry - Higurashi (Higurashi no Naku Koro ni) and The Familiar of Zero (Zero no Tsukaima) led to the company's decision to not renew the licenses or acquire the sequel projects.

The post noted that Funimation never acquired the rights to the When They Cry sequel series, such as Higurashi no Naku Koro Ni Kai or the related Umineko no Naku Koro ni nor would it seek out series "that bears even a minor resemblance."

07th Expansion's original Higurashi no Naku Koro ni visual novel software revolved around murders that coincide with an annual festival in a quiet rural village. The software inspired two television anime series, several video anime projects, two live-action films, and manga adaptations by several artists.

The game publisher MangaGamer licensed the rights to translate the original visual novel software for personal computers, and it has released them in English. North America's Yen Press acquired the Higurashi manga for its Yen Plus anthology magazine and later for compiled book volumes.

The Familiar of Zero anime adapted Nobaru Yamaguchi's light novel series, and three television series were produced.

Both When They Cry and The Familiar of Zero were previously licensed by Geneon Entertainment. When Geneon ceased in-house production of its licenses in 2007, Funimation began distributing some of the former titles.

Funimation also cited low sales for the decision to not license more of the Big Windup! (Ookiku Furikabutte) baseball anime after the first season.

Source: The Fandom Post

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