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With Akira on Hold, Warner Bros. Turns to Live-Action Bleach Movie

Undeterred by its difficulties with Akira, Warner Bros. has acquired the live-action film rights to Bleach, the bestselling action-fantasy manga by Tite Kubo, Variety reports. Wrath of the Titans screenwriter Dan Mazeau will pen the adaptation, with Get Smart‘s Peter Segal producing and possibly directing.

“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,” Segal said.

Debuting in 2001, Bleach follows Ichigo Kurosaki, a teenager with the ability to see spirits who inadvertently absorbs the powers of a Soul Reaper — a personification of death similar to the Grim Reaper — and dedicates his life to protecting the innocent and guiding lost souls to the afterlife.

The manga’s 53 volumes to date have sold 75 million copies in Japan, and spawned a hit animated television series and four feature films. Warner Bros. has been trying to secure the rights to the property since at least March 2010.

Heroes alum Masi Oka, who brought Bleach to Segal’s Callahan Filmworks, will also produce along with Segal’s partner Michael Ewing and Viz Productions, a subsidiary of Viz Media, which publishes the manga in North America.


  • Magnusjragnarok

    Is this really what we need? Or even want?

  • George S.

    Weird. I could have sworn that somebody already bought the rights to make a Bleach live-action movie. I read that somewhere a year or so ago.

    Anyway, what’s up with Hollywood trying to make movies out of high-concept, crazy, flashy and colorful types of anime/manga like Bleach or Akira, when they couldn’t be arsed to give even a modicum of effort to at least match the anime’s excitement or awesomeness (faithfulness to canon be damned)?

    They’re better off adapting Death Note or Monster…that should play more to their “strengths”.

  • Anonymous

    Considering what happened with DragonBall, is it really a good idea for a US film company to try and adapt ANOTHER manga/anime?  Oh, and lets not forget about Last Airbender wither….

  • Anonymous

    Considering what happened with DragonBall, is it really a good idea for a US film company to try and adapt ANOTHER manga/anime?  Oh, and lets not forget about Last Airbender wither….

  • Individualghost

    there was already 3 Death Note movies, but i wouldnt call the 3rd a real deathnote movie.

  • cc1738

    This is the dumbest thing I’ve heard all day.  No manga/anime will translate well to live action.  It will suck.  Not say that the show was any good, it wasn’t, but a live action version will make ths show look like gold.

  • Mak

    I think a Live Action Bleach film will be Awesome…. But I can guarantee that WB will screw it up.

  • Statham

    Did we need or want three Bayformers movies? No. But we got them.

  • Anonymous

    This was brought up years ago to Tite Kubo and he said he never intended to have bleach be translated into a live action.

    “Kubo has also stated that he wishes to make Bleach an experience that
    can only be found by reading manga, and dismissed ideas of creating any
    live-action film adaptations of the series.[6]”

    -shrugs- I suppose you throw enough money at the right people you can get all kinds of stuff developed. 

  • Anonymous

    Well, how many white people are going to play these Asian Roles? I mean it only takes place in Japan. I bet the villain will be the only Asian role.

  • Duskknight45

     I want it. Badly.

  • Duskknight45

     Except Last Airbender wasn’t an anime or a manga. Just correcting you there.

  • Anonymous

    Funny thing most of the villains in the first arcs outside of two aren’t even Asian or at the very least there ethnicity isn’t very clear. But yeah a White guy playing Ichigo would be a travisty.

  • Anonymous

    Yeah, my point is Asians roles are relegated to tokens, villains, and stereotypes but rarely the leads. You got a guy with a name like Ichigo Kurosaki and Rukia Kuchiki (I hope I spelled them correctly been so long) and those are clearly going to be played by white people.

  • rukia kuchiki58

    wen is it coming out?

  • Demoncat4

    when they could not  get Akira going Warners should have learned to leave Magna alone. for they will  wind up either screwing Bleach up or have it join Akira and Warners throwing their hands up in frustration again 

  • Silaw89

    Has Hollywood learned nothing from the utter failure that they did on dragon ball. 

  • Kenny

    There is a kind of Harry Potterish aspect to Bleach (Boy discovers/acquires amazing powers and with his friends fights evil) that could make such a film franchise viable and profitable. But Bleach is just so expansive with dozens of major characters (Ichigo, his friends and family, 13 Captains and as many lieutenants, the 10 Espada and the 8 Vizard just to start) and dozens more minor, and at least 3 major arcs that it would probably take at least 9 (longish) films to tell the story properly and do all the characters justice. There are also some cultural hurdles to overcome to make the film understandable to Western audiences. But I would love to see it happen. I am just gun shy after the abortion that was “The last Airbender” when you can see what happens when Hollywood tries to distill an expansive tale into a single film.

  • Michael J

    Is this the same Warner Bros who is trying to use stolen documents to get the Siegel and Shuster family lawyer kicked out of the copyright case and stop them from getting the final piece of the Superman copyright? The same Warner Bros who claimed that the documents appeared at their doorstep.

    The same documents that was stolen from the office the the lawyer they can’t stand because they feel that he is trying to ruin the deal that they have with the Siegel and Shuster family.The bad blood between the Siegel and Shuster with Dc comics and Warner Bros runs deep.

    I could go into a conspiracy theory that Warner Bros may have hired someone to do the dirty work  them and search for something that could help them to get rid of the Siegel and Shuster lawyer thus we have the stolen document story of theirs but that would be pointless here.

    Anyway this Bleach movie idea thing is going to be another Dragon Ball,Speed Racer,Last Airbender garbage fest.We’ve seen this time and time again.Let me guess.The Ichigo Kurosaki is going to be played by Neal Patrick Harris.We all know he’s going to be an American when Hollywood is done with this film.I bet they might change his name too.

  • LaurenAshleyMay

    I’m conflicted. Honestly, can any of us think of any American actors that would do a good enough job as these characters? But I’ve been waiting for this for quite a while. It’ll be interesting to see how this goes. 

  • Notsolovedxxx

    This Pisses me off! Because of this, they’re stopping the production of the anime itself! The movie’s gonna suck and I want to see new epsiodes of bleach! 

  • Forsberg Zach

    To be honest, i agree if the buget is good and they have a good cast and crew, they could pull it off, but this would result in VIZ media being unable to make any more episodes of Bleach…..

  • Link_111_

    Ichigo casted by Jensen Ackles from supernatural!!! awesome ichigo face and expressions perfect actor!

  • sandwich eater

     This is one of the most ridiculous things about these movies.  At least in the old days they changed the setting and the names of the characters when they were adapting a Japanese movie with a white cast.  I’m referring, of course, to the Magnificent 7 vs. 7 Samurai.

  • Kagato46

    Why. WHY WHY WHY does Hollywood HAVE to adapt the anime’s that are SO steeped in Japanese folklore and culture that they’re impossible for the larger American audience to understand? Then they end up “Americanizing” it to the point that EVERYONE is pissed off at it.  Why not just take something a bit more universal, like Lupin III, and adapt that? Is it THAT hard?

  • Deity_divine

    another anime spoiled and ruined by america….

  • i_am_insane_beware

     And Death Note was adapted in Japan, which instantly made it easer to accept and watch.

  • 99999

    to make a proper bleach movie you would have to make at least six movies so not only will this fail it will fail possibly to an even worse degree then Dragonball Z live action movie

  • Suzume

    It will be disaster . . .  

  • i hate you

    i love the anime bleach the anime and these idiots replaced it whit an weird and stupid comedy anime whit “rock lee” i want my childhood anime back not to make an idiot movie of it understand?

  • i hate you

    i love the anime bleach the anime and these idiots replaced it whit an weird and stupid comedy anime whit “rock lee” i want my childhood anime back not to make an idiot movie of it understand?

  • Wolfy de la Lucio

    atleast if they do this then theres HOPEFULLY a CHANCE that there will be better bleach games in america.

  • Wolfy de la Lucio

    I agree. However I just hope it doesnt get screwed up. SO im going to be cautious

  • Alen Divljanović

    it will be a good movie but they nead some gr8 advisors for that move some one who is up to date whit storie, some one who is doing bleach reviews every weak like tekking101 or the eliteace i think