Popular anime/manga Bleach is coming to Hollywood… Sigh…

3 min read

Ah, Hollywood, you sly old devil. Just when us manga and anime fans breath a massive sigh of relief from the fact that you have given up on destroying our awesome memories of Akira, you go and sneak this one in.

Filed under “News from out of nowhere”, Variety is reporting that Warner Bros is looking to adapt Tite Kubo’s popular manga and anime, Bleach, into a live action film.


The manga tells the tale of strangely blond-haired Ichigo, a high-school teenager who can somehow see and communicate with ghosts. When his family is attacked by a Hollow – a malevolent lost soul – Ichigo encounters Rukia, a Shinigami (or Death spirit), whose job it is to protect the mortal world from Hollows. During the battle he inadvertently absorbs her powers, somehow transforming into a Shinigami himself. So begins his quest to discovering his destiny, and even saving the world a few time.

Peter Segal has been tasked by WB to produce and possibly even direct, while Dan Mazeau will be adapting the screenplay, which is actually not a bad production team, if you think about it.

While Bleach has a very epic overall story line, that story is not the most complex or nuanced one out there. It is essentially a really cool and often times funny tale about a high school kid hitting would-be gods in the face with a really big sword. Segal previously directed the Steve Carrel spy-comedy Get Smart, while Mazeau performed scripting duties on upcoming Wrath of the Titans, so 2 for 2 on those fronts, I guess.

The problem comes in when you look at the fact that Bleach’s biggest draw is probably it’s massive roster of absolutely crazy and badass characters. I just think that there is absolutely no way that you can pay true respect to these characters and their abilities, in a 90 minute film.

Also, it does not bode well that another manga adaptation involving Shinigami – the Shane Black (Lethal Weapon, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) adapted Death Note – is apparently having a tough time with the studios. They’ve apparently requested Black to remove all traces of the Shinigami (who are critical) from his adapted screenplay.

Somehow, I just don’t think conservative Hollywood likes the title of “Death God” very much. And now somebody wants to make an entire movie just about them? Yeah, I don’t see that happening without much interference.

Segal had this to say about the project:

“I’ve always been a huge fan of Bleach and have great respect for its creator Kubo and the truly original and amazing world he has created in this manga.”

Yeah, I’m holding you to that, Segal.

Last Updated: February 23, 2012

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