Posted by Ashley Williams
A new Fruits Basket anime is in the works that covers the entire manga story. Author Natsuki Takaya will be the executive supervisor, and she was kind enough to write some comments on the occasion. This is a new series with an all-new cast and staff. It will air in 2019 on TV TOKYO and other stations, and North American distributor Funimation has licensed the series for streaming rights on the FunimationNow platform as well as eventual home video rights. Today we’re releasing a teaser visual as well as announcing a portion of the new cast.
Fruits Basket (by Natsuki Takaya) is a wildly popular shojo manga that ran in Hakusensha’s Hana to Yume line from 1998 to 2006. Worldwide sales of the comic exceeded 30 million copies. It was made into an anime in 2001 that ran for 26 episodes on TV TOKYO and its affiliates, and it was also adapted for the stage in 2009. The original series was released with an English-language dub by Funimation in North America for both home video release and digital streaming on the FunimationNow streaming service. The total number of manga volumes was 23 for the first run, and a Collector’s Edition has been published in 12 volumes. The manga boasts continuing popularity even now, a decade after its serialization ended.
A spinoff manga called Fruits Basket Another began running online in September of 2015, and its first two print volumes have sold a combined 340,000 copies.
The story’s main character is high school student Tohru Honda. She begins living alone in a tent after she loses her mother, who was her only remaining family member. However, it turns out that the land she pitches her tent on is part of the distinguished Sohma family estate! When Shigure Sohma sees the value of her housekeeping skills, Tohru ends up living with Yuki Sohma, who is essentially the prince of her school, and Kyo Sohma, who regards Yuki as the enemy. But there’s something Tohru doesn’t know yet: the Sohma family has been bound for centuries by a horrible curse... Fruits Basket pairs shojo manga’s signature romantic suspense with an unexpected and profound story. The series has received overwhelming support from a broad demographic, especially women. Once you get hooked, you won’t be able to stop until the end!
And now, at long last, there will be new Fruits Basket anime that tells the whole story. Author Natsuki Takaya will be the executive supervisor, and she has even given us her official comments on the new adaptation, in which she tells of her warm feelings about the new anime. “First of all, I’d like to offer my sincere congratulations to the staff for bringing us to this announcement day. I may be the manga author, but at the same time, I’m only the manga author. So I think this announcement is a long-awaited recognition of the efforts of all of those directly involved in the anime’s production, and that’s a relief to me.”
This series is a new series with an all-new cast and staff, and broadcast will begin in 2019 on TV TOKYO and other stations. Some of the casting is not yet public, but the main cast is a lineup of talented voice actors: Manaka Iwami as Tohru Honda, Nobunaga Shimazaki as Yuki Sohma, Yuma Uchida as Kyo Sohma, and Yuichi Nakamura as Shigure Sohma. The new staff includes Yoshihide Ibata as director, Taku Kishimoto as series writer, Masaru Shindo as character designer, and TMS Entertainment as the animation studio. That’s right: this all-new series will be produced by a team of the best talent in the anime industry.
Moreover, we’re releasing a teaser visual of the characters whose new actors have been revealed--Tohru, Yuki, Kyo, and Shigure. It’s a very Fruits Basket image, with the Sohma family giving Tohru a warm welcome as she returns home. Longtime Fruits Basket fans will love it, and people who aren’t familiar with Fruits Basket will get a sense of the story.
The official site which went live today has a version of the teaser visual with some fun tricks incorporated, so please take a look at that too.
Although the manga series ended over ten years ago, Fruits Basket still has many fans. This news of the full anime adaptation they’ve waited so long for is sure to build more buzz around the title. We’ll continue to release a stream of new information, so please look forward to that.