Leaked images of the upcoming April 8th issue of Young Animal have revealed the names behind the new Berserk TV anime that is set to begin airing this July. Here’s the list:
Director: Shin Itagaki
Series configuration: Makoto Fukami
Series configuration assistant: Takashi Yamashita
Main Character Design: Hisashi Abe
Music: Shirō Sagisu
Insert song: Susumu Hirasawa
Production: LIDEN FILMS
Animation production: GEMBA / millepensee
Guts: Hiroaki Iwanaga
Puck: Kaoru Mizuhara
Farnese: Yōko Hikasa
Serpico: Kazuyuki Okitsu
Isidro: Hiro Shimono
Azan: Hiroki Yasumoto
Casca: Toa Yukinari
Griffith: Takahiro Sakurai
Skull Knight: Akio Ōtsuka
Narration: Unshou Ishizuka
The director Itagaki has previously been at the helm of shows such as Teekyu, Ben-to, and Basquash! but he has also worked on a number of much cooler productions such as Diebuster, Gurren Lagann, and Dead Leaves. With such a background, I can’t even guess as to how well Itagaki will do with adapting Berserk for television. Although Liden Films was involved with last year’s The Heroic Legend of Arslan television series, GEMBA and millepensee are handling the actual animation production. Again, I will really have to wait and see what this weekend’s new promotional video looks like before I can make a call about what the animation quality will be like. millepensee previously worked with Itagaki on Teekyu…and that show seems to just be about cute girls playing tennis. I have no idea what this could mean for the Berserk television series as OLM (the studio behind the 1997 Berserk TV anime) had been known for its work on the Pokemon TV series and it came out okay for a lower-budget 90’s anime. The Golden Age arc films were of course done by Studio 4°C, who have a fantastic history of interesting animation projects and we ended up with a trilogy of films with 2D and 3D animation that was amazingly inconsistent for such a well-renowned studio.
Although Studio 4°C is no longer involved in this new adaptation of Berserk, all of the principle leads from the Golden Age films are reprising their roles as Guts, Casca, Griffith, and Skull Knight. What’s really exciting is to see is a VA listed for Puck. He was sorely missed in the 1997 television series and it was especially painful to see him teased in the Golden Age films but not given a speaking role. It’s also interesting to note that Farnese, Serpico, Azan and Isidro are listed on that cast list. I half-expected to see Schierke on that list as well. I still think the series will be 12-13 episodes but based on this cast list I really have no idea what they will be adapting in that time. I initially thought this new television series would just adapt the first three volumes of Miura’s original manga and perhaps the Lost Children chapter of the Conviction arc. With the inclusion of Isidro, we are getting into material I really didn’t expect to see adapted anytime soon.
Shiro Sagisu (Neon Genesis Evangelion composer) is back on the soundtrack after having previously done the music for the Golden Age arc trilogy. Susumu Hirasawa is being credited with one insert song which will be titled “Ash” (Hai yo). No matter how the project turns out, it’s always nice to get a new Berserk-inspired Susumu Hirasawa song.
Along with all the news about the upcoming television anime, that upcoming issue of Young Animal also announces a new Blu-Ray box collection of the Golden Age trilogy that will be released on June 22nd.
Even more exciting is the news that the long-awaited volume 38 of Kentaro Miura’s manga will be released in Japan on June 24th. As you can see from the image above, starting with volume 38, Berserk covers will now have a new cover style. The previous 37 volumes are going to be re-published with the new cover design as well. There will be more information about the new volume with this year’s Young Animal number 8.
A new promotional video for the 2016 Berserk television series is expected at this weekend’s Anime Japan event.