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Shinichiro Watanabe Directed A ‘Blade Runner’ Short

The upcoming Blade Runner 2049 will be accompanied by an animated short tie-in Blade Runner: Black Out 2022 directed by Shinichiro Watanabe of Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo fame.

Watanabe’s short takes place in the year 2022, in between the timeline of the original Blade Runner movie (set in a dystopian Los Angeles of 2019) and the new film (2049). The story of the short revolves around a power outage on the west coast of the United States, according to Anime News Network.

While the short isn’t out yet, Sony Pictures Japan has released a behind-the-scenes clip that previews some artwork from the Cygames Pictures-produced short, which includes the involvement of Shukou Murase as character designer and animation director.

Flying Lotus, who scored the short, wrote on Twitter about his excitement to be working on a project with Watanabe:

Blade Runner 2049 opens in the U.S. on October 6.

  • Beamish Kinowerks

    It’s interesting how Hollywood has flirted with animated films that have a serious bent, but still doesn’t really embrace them. I remember how people were optimistic about Marvel being absorbed into Disney and the possibility of creating projects for mature audiences, but I doubt it’ll happen. Similarly, American television has only produced one primetime animated show that wasn’t a comedy, Amblin’s INVASION AMERICA.

    • Metlow Rovenstein

      Well, there was Spawn from HBO. That wasn’t a comedy in the slightest. But I feel that maybe one of the Big 4 broadcast networks could do an action cartoon designed for prime-time.

  • KW

    Im not much of an anime fan, but one of the few anime’s I do like is Samurai Champloo and since that creator is in charge of this it has my full attention. Cant wait to see it