Viz Media is pleased to announce that one of their most successful multimedia properties, Bleach, is expanding into another format.
Warner Bros. has acquired rights to make a live-action feature film based on the popular manga/anime story by Tite Kubo. Bleach has over 75 million copies in print in Japan, across more than 50 volumes, with more available in other countries. (The US figures are over two million sold over 38 volumes.)
The plot stars Ichigo, a teenager who can see ghosts and who accidentally gets the powers of a Soul Reaper (a kind of death god). He uses them to fight spirits, “protecting the innocent and helping tortured souls find peace”. The superhero-like premise might allow for great crossover potential.
One of the producers (and potential director) is Peter Segal, while the screenwriter will be Dan Mazeau (Wrath of the Titans, the sequel to Clash of the Titans). Another producer is Masi Oka (Heroes, Hawaii Five-0).
Bleach is available in print volumes and digitally, plus new digital chapters are included in Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha. The cartoon version aired on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim and is available on DVD.
Warner also has the rights for a Death Note movie; they’ve been working on the Bleach deal since at least 2010.