News Manga UK Comments on Bleach Live-Action Film Annoucement
Manga UK, which distributes the Bleach anime on U.K. DVD, has commented on its twitter feed about the announcement that Warner Brothers is developing a live-action feature film version of the franchise.
If you think about [it], Warner Brothers is the only studio to make a successful live-action anime movie with The Matrix. Like a lot of anime though, they couldn't carry off a satisfying conclusion. Matrix Reloaded [and] Matrix Revolutions both had good points, but were a bit weak.
[Anime/manga adaptations] always need a pedigree and in-built fan base to minimise the risk. Hence Akira, Bleach, Death Note and Ghost in the Shell live-action movies all at varying stages of development. The problem is, some massive turkeys loom large over any future anime adaptation for the big screen including Dragonball: Evolution and Speed Racer. I personally love [the live-action] Speed Racer, but how many 7 year-olds can sit through a 2 1/2 hour long psych trip like that? Know who your audience is before you make the movie. Very important rule..."
I think that will actually be very good and I know that Starz's interest in the property is entirely based on the story and characters and not how many manga or anime DVDs it has sold.
Returning to the subject of Bleach, Manga added:
Warners don't care about existing fans. You guys are only the tip of the iceberg. Truth is, Bleach is a cool concept that will hook a massive new global audience if executed properly. Not that they have contempt for you guys. It's just not how these guys operate. Accountants like to know that the $100 million movie they're about to finance has already sold over 75 million books globally, more than 2 million DVDs, over $50 million worth of merchandise, etc. [It] makes them feel more secure in parting with their cash to make it. Ultimately though, the producers want to make a good movie...
I love anime because of the great characters, stories and design. I don't really care about where it comes from, just like I don't care where Marvel or DC come from. For me, it's about the finished product. But for a lot of otaku, it's the exotic nature of anime and manga that keeps them hooked. That does not make it mainstream. Western "Otaku" are modern day Orientalists. I mean that as a compliment by the way... At the end of the day, no-one can take away the manga and anime you love from you. It'll always [be] there for you to enjoy and cherish. Don't forget that, guys. Business is business."