Why was the anime canceled?
It was announced earlier this year that Bleach fans would be able to see their favorite anime as a live action film in 2018. This comes after Naruto and Full Metal Alchemist also announced they are starting to work on a live-action version of their franchises as well.
Similar to Naruto Shippuden and Full Metal Alchemist, Bleach’s manga has ended and now the franchise is ready to have its first live-action movie with the conclusion of the series.
Unlike the other anime, Bleach has never been completed and instead had its animation canceled in August 2012. It isn’t clear as to why the anime was canceled after episode 366, all we know is that we haven’t seen or heard from the creators about the series starting again.
Some theories suggest that the anime was canceled because there was a decrease in its popularity, with many fans believing that there were too many filler episodes. This could be the reason for its cancellation, with Bleach creating entire seasons worth of filler such as the ‘Zanpakuto saga’ that didn’t appear in the manga.
Another reason why fans believe the anime was canceled was due to the anime rapidly catching up to the manga. However, If that was the case then we would have seen the anime start up again by now, as it’s been four years since the anime was canceled.
Could the anime return?
Now with the end of the manga this year, there have been rumors suggesting that the anime could return. There is so much new content available, but there is little to no evidence to support this. Many support the rumors even though there has been nothing officially stated by any production company.
Obviously, if a company such as Warner Bros Japan, begin to make a live-action movie based on the anime, there must still be a large demand from its fan base.
We know Bleach is a part of the big three (along with Naruto and One Piece) so the demand is definitely there. With a live-action film expected to be available in cinemas around late 2018, it would give a two-year gap between the manga’s end and the movie.
I feel as if the anime was to start again, it would work as a build up for the movie and at the same time maybe attract new fans as well, instead of just a two-year wait.
For a production studio to bring back the anime, it will cost a lot of money to create, and they would require a guaranteed return of that money. That being said, with the live-action film on its way and the huge fanbase Bleach has, we know that Bleach has the capability to be a gold mine once again.