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Chocolate Inc. Aims to Release Its 1st Anime Film, KILLTUBE, in Spring 2026 (Updated)

posted on by Joanna Cayanan
Pilot film streamed for battle entertainment story set in near-future Edo-era Tokyo

Japanese company CHOCOLATE Inc., (live-action film Mondays/See You “This” Week!, Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba's Total Concentration exhibition, production and publicity for Dark Gathering anime) has launched plans to produce its first anime film, KILLTUBE, and it started streaming a "pilot film" on Monday. The company is targeting the 90-minute film for spring 2026, with plans for a worldwide release.

The pilot film video has the theme of "Edo punk." It depicts Tokyo's Shibuya and Shinjuku districts in a parallel world, where the Edo shogunate has closed off Japan for over four centuries into 2026. In this isolated, stratified society, the only way to change one's standing in life is through duel battles streamed on KILLTUBE.

The battle entertainment story unfolds when an unlikely trio from the lowest depths of society withstand ridicule and aim for the top. As they win over the general public, they discover the hidden truth behind the KILLTUBE system.

The staff aims to use 3D CG to depict the look of shin-hanga (Showa period woodblock prints) in vivid colors and different textures. CHOCOLATE Inc. is working with up-and-coming VFX studio KASSEN and concept artist group WACHAJACK with a budget of 1 billion yen (about US$6.6 million).

Kazuaki Kuribayashi is directing and planning the film at STUDIO DOTOU. CHOCOLATE Inc. is in charge of planning and production.

The film's staff also includes:

The film project is part of the "108 Experiments" initiative by CHOCOLATE Inc. to develop new ways to create works, present them, and earn revenue to nurture original stories. The company is also currently looking for creators and partners to work on KILLTUBE.

Update: CHOCOLATE Inc. revealed a synopsis of the film:

In 2026, Japan continues its isolation under the Edo Shogunate. Amidst strict social hierarchies, three indivi duals, treated as scums of society, cross paths in a prison cell destined for a fateful encounter. They join the dueling video platform "KILLTUBE" to pursue fortune and to win their freedom in a segregational world. In an era dubbed the "Age of Great Duels," where one can amass immense wealth simply by defeating the strong, they face discrimination from samurais and merchants seeking power and authority. As they break the limits of convention and claim victory after victory, they rise in popularity, becoming decorated celebrities of their time.
However, just as they reach the height of their fame, they uncover the hidden truth behind "KILLTUBE"...

CHOCOLATE Inc. stated the film will serve "as an experimental ground for theatrical animation production." The company plans to "create, deliver, monetize, and nurture this original story from scratch, planning '108 Experiments' across all aspects of production," and will document 48 of those experiments.

Sources: PR Times, Comic Natalie

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