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Free! Anime Franchise Gets 2 Compilation Films, New Theatrical Anime This Year

posted on by Crystalyn Hodgkins
Both compilation films will include new footage, new project will be sequel

An event on Sunday in Tokyo for the High Speed! -Free! Starting Days- anime film announced that Kyoto Animation's Free! franchise is getting two anime compilation films as well as an all-new theatrical anime project. The Free! -Timeless Medley- Kizuna (Bonds) compilation film will open on April 22, and the Free! -Timeless Medley- Yakusoku (Promise) compilation film will open on July 1. Both films also include new footage. The Kizuna film will focus on the members of the IWAtobi Swim Club, and the Yakusoku film will focus on Rin and Sousuke.

Kyoto Animation is streaming a trailer for Free! -Timeless Medley- Kizuna.

Style Five is singing the first compilation film's theme song "Rising Free."

The Free! -Take Your Marks- theatrical anime project is a sequel to Free! Timeless Medley, and it will screen in theaters in Japan this fall. The theatrical anime will take place in early spring as Haruka is about to graduate from high school.

Kyoto Animation had announced in August that the franchise was getting a new "screen" project, but didn't reveal the medium for the project at the time.

Kyoto Animation's first Free! anime about the Iwatobi High School Swim Club premiered in July 2013, and Crunchyroll streamed the anime as it aired in Japan. Discotek released the first season on DVD with English subtitles in North America in May 2015. Crunchyroll streamed an English dub of the first season in December 2015, and the company plans to release the season with Funimation on both Blu-ray Disc and DVD in May.

Free! Eternal Summer, the second television anime season, premiered in July 2014. Funimation streamed the second season as it aired, and released the series on DVD and Blu-ray Disc in North America with an English dub in February 2016.

The High Speed! -Free! Starting Days- film is directly inspired by the High Speed! novel that was loosely adapted into the original Free! television anime. Whereas the Free! anime centers on Haruka and the other swimmers during high school, High Speed! followed the characters during middle school. The second volume of the novel series shipped in July 2014. The film opened in Japan in December 2015.

A new novel version of the anime's first season will ship in June. Masahiro Yokotani, the script writer and supervisor for all the anime in the Free! franchise, is writing the novel. Futoshi Nishiya, the franchise's character designer, is drawing the illustrations. The novels will include new side-stories and illustrations.

This article has a follow-up: 2017 Free! Anime Films Reveal Cast, Staff, Story Premise (2017-03-19 12:15)
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