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Adult Swim and Crunchyroll Reveal 'Blade Runner: Black Lotus' Cast, Tease SDCC Panel.


The animation world is becoming increasingly global. Co-productions have always been a thing, but as streaming sites increasingly reach an international audience, we are seeing them more frequently. In particular, as anime grows in popularity around the world, we're seeing more western studios teaming up with Japanese creatives to create anime based on western properties.

Way back in 2018, we reported on Blade Runner: Black Lotus, an anime set in the world of Ridley Scott's 1982 sci-fi noir classic and its sequel Blade Runner 2049. US network Adult Swim and streaming site Crunchyroll are working with anime studio Sola Digital Arts to create the series. Shinji Aramaki and Kenji Kamiyama of Ghost In The Shell SAC_2045 were announced to direct episodes, with Cowboy Bebop's Shinichiro Watanabe (who also directed short Blade Runner Black Out 2022) is on board as a creative producer.

The wait is finally nearly over as Adult Swim and Crunchyroll have revealed the starry voice-cast and announced that they will offer the first look at the series in a joint panel at San Diego ComicCon At Home on July 23, on YouTube.

Character descriptions have been released for the main cast, along with the voice actors for both English and Japanese versions. 

Elle: a female replicant created for a secret and unknown purpose. VA: Jessica Henwick / Arisa Shida.
Joseph: a mysterious figure who owns a spare parts junkyard in Los Angeles.VA: Will Yun Lee / Shinshu Fuji.
Alani Davis: a fresh LAPD recruit, will be played by Samira Wiley / Takako Honda
Niander Wallace Sr,: founder and CEO of the Wallace Corporation. VA: Brian Cox / Takaya Hashi.
Niander Wallace Jr,: a brilliant scientist working for his father, VA: Wes Bentley / Takehito Koyasu
Marlowe: a deadly Blade Runner,. VA: Josh Duhamel / Taiten Kusunoki.
Josephine Grant: the wife of the police chief. VA: Peyton List / Yoshiko Sakakibara
Earl Grant: Police Chief of the LAPD. VA: Stephen Root / Hochu Otsuka.
Doc Badger: a black market dealer. VA: Barkhad Abdi / Takayuki Kinba.
Senator Bannister: a politician with strong feelings on replicant production. VA: Gregg Henry / Masane Tsukayama.
Doctor M: a brilliant doctor and professor of medicine. VA: Henry Czerny / Akio Nojima.
Hooper, a journalist in the pocket of the Wallace Corporation. VA: Jason Spisak / Kazuki Yao.

The series is set in 2032, between the events of the two Blade Runner movies. It will arrive later this year, with the English version set to screen on the Toonami block on Adult Swim in the US, with the Japanese version set to stream internationally (outside of Asia) on Crunchyroll. The series will run for 13 episodes.

The panel kicks off at 5 PM Pacific/ 8PM Eastern time and will feature Aramaki and Kamiyama as well as Joseph Chou (executive producer), Wes Gleason (voice director), Jessica Henwick (voice of Elle), and moderated by Jason DeMarco (Toonami senior vice-president/co-creator and creative director for Adult Swim).

From Top Left: Jessica Henwick, Will Yun Lee, Samira Wiley, (bottom left) Barkhad Abdi, Brian Cox, Peyton List