Netflix making live-action ‘One Piece’ from popular manga

Netflix making live-action ‘One Piece’ from popular manga

Netflix making live-action ‘One Piece’ from popular manga

Hit Japanese mangaOne Piece” is coming to Netflix as a live-action series, a development that’s both exciting and worrisome for fans who have seen mixed success in a growing list of Hollywood adaptations.

Chronicling the coming-of-age adventures of Monkey D. Luffy, a young pirate with a heart of gold, the world’s bestselling manga series has already been adapted into an anime TV series with over 900 episodes. There are also 13 animated movies, “One Piece” video games and merchandise galore.

Japanese pop culture expert Roland Kelts says it’s a “stunning moment for anime,” in part due to streaming on platforms like Netflix, which has helped make entertainment borderless.

Live-action “One Piece,” expected later this year, comes on the heels of the global success of “Demon Slayer,” another manga that got its start in Shonen Jump and was adapted into a movie and an anime series that was picked up by Netflix.

In February, The Pokémon Company announced “Pokémon Concierge,” a stop-motion anime collaboration with Netflix. Pokémon is the world’s most valuable media franchise with estimated all-time sales of $100 billion, according to a 2021 Statista report.

Followed by Hello Kitty, the two Japanese products outrank Western offerings like Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and Star Wars. Hollywood live-action adaptations of other popular Japanese products - from Makoto Shinkai’s 2016 body-swap anime “Your Name” to the “Gundam” franchise of giant robots that started in 1979 - are also in progress.

Live-action “One Piece” will star Mexican actor Iñaki Godoy (‘The Imperfects’) as Luffy, whose nationality is canonically a mystery, alongside American actor Emily Rudd (‘The Romanoffs’) as Nami and Japanese-American actor Mackenyu (Fullmetal Alchemist: Revenge of Scar,’ ‘Fullmetal Alchemist: Final Transmutation’) as Roronoa Zoro.

The main character’s inclusive persona, drawing more and more companions to join his quest throughout the story, highlights the kind of school, office or workplace environment people crave in modern-day society, fan Oiki said.