Not long after Part 1 of this look at 12 Aniplex anime that "deserve" license rescues went live, someone argued that Toward the Terra
TV, which was on that first part, could still possibly see re-release by Aniplex of America because of that Blu-Ray boxset scheduled for March of 2023, which I also brought up. Under normal standards I'd agree, but if we look at AoA's history then I think we can see that there's very little chance of that actually happening. You see, just by taking a cursory glance at Aniplex of America's catalog
something very obvious becomes clear: It's mainly comprised of "new" shows. While AoA has released some catalog titles on home video, like 2007's Baccano!
, Read or Die
(both the 2001 OVA & 2003 TV series), 2009's Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood
, & 2007's Gurren Lagann
TV, the company's bread & butter is about what's then brand new, first by streaming & then later on home video. However, the latter only really happens to specific shows, namely the ones that look to have caught some sort of fanbase that AoA feels would be willing to spend $100+ for special edition boxsets; AoA has done "standard" releases as well, but even those are more expensive than normal. Re-releases of catalog titles are extremely rare from AoA and are reserved for only the titles that have truly proven themselves as being iconic, like FMA
& Gurren Lagann
. In comparison, R.O.D.
was an early AoA release (2011), & it more than likely sold poorly (there just weren't enough fans for it that were willing to pay $200), seemingly killing interest in releasing other "secondary" catalog titles like it; I would imagine Gyo: Tokyo Fish Attack
wasn't a big seller, either. Hell, even Rurouni Kenshin
, which is the oldest show Aniplex of America currently has the rights to (but also arguably one of the biggest), has never received a physical re-release by AoA; that alone should tell you enough about how Aniplex of America feels about catalog titles.
While Toward the Terra TV is generally considered a great show... it also doesn't seem like something Aniplex of America would feel is worth re-releasing as a special edition boxset, or even as a more-expensive-than-usual standard release. So, with that addressed, let's move on the second half of this Aniplex-focused license rescue list, shall we?
I figured I should just get one overall franchise included this time around, though I do try to avoid doing that now, so let's start off with a bit of an unlikely one: Blood
. In the late 90s, Production I.G.'s president Mitsuhisa Ishikawa wanted to produce an original anime, instead of simply doing more adaptations, but had no ideas to go with. However, he knew of the "Oshii Juku", a series of lectures Mamoru Oshii ran to help teach new filmmakers about how to create their own projects, so Ishikawa simply asked Oshii if his students could contribute ideas, and in the end went with a simple one thought up by Kenji Kamiyama & Junichi Fujisaku: "A girl in a sailor suit wielding a samurai sword". The end result would be 2000's Blood: The Last Vampire
, a ~45-minute film about a young girl named Saya who heads to Yokota Base
in Japan in 1966 to hunt vampire-like creatures named Chiropterans (a.k.a. "Bat People"), and it'd also be Production I.G.'s very first digitally-animated production; helping provide capital for this movie as a producer was SPE Visual Works, the original name for Aniplex. Blood
was also a "media mix" project, as alongside the movie was a light novel written by Mamoru Oshii & a PlayStation 2 video game (Sony Computer Entertainment was also a producer), and afterwards came a short manga sequel & two other light novels, the latter of which were written by Junichi Fujisaku, who would take strong ownership of Blood
, while Kenji Kamiyama left after helping write the movie. In North America, Manga Entertainment would license Blood: The Last Vampire
in 2001 & release it on VHS, DVD, Blu-Ray, & even UMD(!) up through 2009, while also releasing Yoshihiro Ike's musical score on CD in 2006.