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Netflix's Live-Action Cowboy Bebop Show to 'Expand' on Anime's Canon

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Series will not be full-on remake, will add original stories

Andre Nemec, one of the showrunners for Netflix's live-action adaptation of Sunrise's Cowboy Bebop anime, stated in an interview with entertainment magazine Entertainment Weekly on Tuesday that the live-action adaptation will be an "expansion to the canon" of the anime, adding original stories. He added that the series will not be a full-on remake, saying that "just [redoing] the anime will leave an audience hungry for something that they already saw."

Nemec said the live-action series does "a really nice job of not violating the canon in any direction but merely [offers] some extra glimpses into the world that was already created."

Nemec also revealed in the interview that he was introduced to the anime when he heard some "eclectic, funky jazzy music" from Cowboy Bebop composer Yoko Kanno on the radio while driving in New York. Kanno is herself returning to work on the live-action series.

The 10-episode series will premiere on November 19. The series stars John Cho as Spike, Mustafa Shakir as Jet, Daniella Pineda as Faye, Alex Hassell as Vicious, and Elena Satine as Julia.

The series is a co-production between Netflix and Tomorrow Studios, with Netflix handling physical production. Tomorrow Studios is a partnership between producer Marty Adelstein (Prison Break, Teen Wolf, producer for the live-action One Piece project) and ITV Studios. Shinichiro Watanabe, the original anime's director, is serving as consultant for the project. Andre Nemec, Josh Appelbaum, Jeff Pinkner, and Scott Rosenberg of Midnight Radio are credited as showrunners and executive producers.

Tomorrow Studios' Marty Adelstein and Becky Clements; Yasuo Miyakawa, Masayuki Ozaki, and Shin Sasaki of Sunrise (the studio that animated the original series); and Tetsu Fujimura and Matthew Weinberg are also credited as executive producers. Chris Yost (Thor: The Dark World, Thor: Ragnarok) is writing the series, and is credited as executive producer.

The original anime series follows the motley crew of the spaceship Bebop as it travels throughout the solar system in search of the next job. The anime inspired Cowboy Bebop: The Movie in 2001. Funimation released the series on Blu-ray and DVD in North America in 2014, and screened the film in the United States in 2018, the 20th anniversary of the original series.

Sources: Entertainment Weekly (Nick Romano), IndieWire (Zack Sharf)


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