WIT Studio has created some of the most popular modern anime, and Warner Bros has some of the biggest franchises in the world. What would happen if they collaborated? Well, we'll see pretty soon, as they will be announcing their first project - an anime - on July 3 during Anime Expo.
Popverse's Tiffany Babb will be reporting live from the Warner Bros. Japan x WIT Studio , giving you a direct play-by-play on all the major announcements and behind-the-scenes information on the companies' collaboration.
The Anime Expo Warner Bros. Japan x WIT Studio Panel at the Los Angeles Convention Center is scheduled to begin Sunday, July 3 at 1pm EST / 10am PST, so come back then to follow along live for Popverse's coverage of the event, or come back later to re-read everything that we covered.
The music has ticked up a notch, so I think we're beginning soon.
And the lights are going down.
Our host Joanna has taken the stage and is getting the crowd excited.
"I think you're all going to love what we have in store," Joanna says before introducing special guests starting with Hiroyuki Omori, Executive producer Warner Bros. Japan.
Up next is George Wada, president of WIT Studio.
Wada says "Let's enjoy the party" to the excited panel audience.
Host Joanna teases exciting stuff all panel long. Now we're being shown some a teaser of from Warner Bros anime projects including JoJo and Bastard.
Now we're seeing a teaser from Wit Studio projects including Spy X Family.
Now it's time for an announcement... of a new project... The title is DC related. An original anime based on DC characters
As for which characters will be in the project...
The anime will feature the Suicide Squad!
The anime will be called Suicide Squad Isekai.
In response to host Joanna asking "Is this a dream?" Omori replies, "This is not a dream. This is a made-in Japan, totally original story set in an Isekai world."
"After our big success on Batman Ninja, we decided to take on this series" Omori adds.
About how WIT got involved in the franchise, Wada says, "I like DC" and then unbuttons his shirt to reveal a Batman shirt underneath.
Wada jokes that James Gunn has yet to reach out to him, and so he's ready to surprise Gunn with this Japanese isakai.
Now, we're getting some info about the creative staff on the project. Wada shares some of the staff names on a slide (this is as much as we could get in the short moment)
Director: Eri Osada,
Screenplay: Tappei Nagatsuki & Eiji Umehara
Character design draft: Akira Amano
Now more special guests... the director of the film Eri Osada, wearing a Katana mask!
Osada says, "This is actually my first time participating in a US event, and I am so blown away by all the hype you are showing right now. I am so happy to be here at Anime Expo."
Next guests are two producers Sho Ohtani (Wit Studio) and Keisuke Ariga (Warner Bros Japan).
Looks like we're going to get more details about the project...
About working on this project with the project screenwriters (both experts in the genre), Director Osana calls the writers a "perfect combination when it comes to writing this scenario. I'm very very confident, and it is very reassuring to work with them."
A message being read from writer Nagatsuki, "Who has ever thought about mixing these two? But this is sure to be a dream project. Crazy villains go on a rampage in ISEKAI! It's nothing more, nothing less, and it can't be anything else"
We're getting a look at a teaser visual from Suicide Squad Isekai drawn by Akira Amano (Psycho Pass) and featuring Harley Quinn with a black crown that reads Suicide Squad. She's tearing a pearl necklace from her neck.
Looks like there's even more to share... We're looking at the animated character design. Very very cute stuff. Harley's outfit looks punk meets skater girl meets motorcycle outfit?
About the design, Wada says "When I first saw this image, I was convinced that Suicide Squad is going to be a great hit."
Our next design... is The Joker wearing black gloves and holding a joker card. He's got a dress shirt and a suit vest in one outfit, a pruple suit in another, and a knit vest and pinstripe trousers in the last. His hair is a silvery green.
Director Osada says about the design "Joker is a difficult character for us to tackle, because I think everybody has their favorite version of the Joker... We were wondering which iteration of Joker we wanted to base on. We actually decided to make it totally original and not copy any specific iteration."
Omori says that "In Japan, we call handsome men like this ikemen," when he refers to the updated look of the Joker.
Harley Quinn will be leading this story, which is why Harley is the sole character on the key art they showed us.
Now it looks like the pins Harley is wearing on that Key art gives us a look at who will be on the squad. A bullseye looks like it means Deadshot, but the other pin I can't quite figure out...
We're going to get a teaser video from WIT.
We see Harley dancing, Joker driving a car, a giant ice dragon? And Amanda Waller!
(If we haven't mentioned it yet, producer Ohtani is dressed as the Joker, makeup and all. )
Director Osada says "This project is taking place in both Gotham City and Isekai world" and that they played with visual techniques to create contrast in those two realms. "Because it is Isekai, I got the express permission for DC characters to use magic."
For more info to come, keep an eye on DC official twitter and Warner Bros Japan Anime Youtube Channel.
"I can assure you it's going to be a great one, so stay tuned" Producer Ariga says. Ohtani says he had a lot of fun on this title and hopes fans enjoy it.
Wada says, "As you may be aware, the announcement was made here in the United States ahead of Japan. I was hoping that the US audience will watch more anime. And I consider all of you as a part of our team." To great applause from the audience.
Director Osada says, "This project is slightly unconventional... but I hope it will be one of your favorits, and so I will work hard to achieve that."
Wada chimes in that "If this Suicide Squad Isekai proves successful, I would love to make more with DC characters."
Looks like we're wrapping up with a big group photo of the creators with the audience.
The creators have left the stage and are asking the fans to join them