Though Netflix has been known to have something of a spotty past when it comes to live-action anime adaptations, fans seem to be loving the streamer’s latest outing, One Piece. According to a recent write-up in Telegraph, the streaming service’s massive budget for the series signifies more than just an assumption of success, as audiences and executives alike have come to learn that the massive influence of anime and manga extends far beyond the reaches of Japan. The series has already drawn in a massive audience of Netflix subscribers, with many fans already making demands for a second season.
Netflix opened up the wallet for One Piece, spending nearly $18 million on each episode, but the gamble has been worth it.
Despite massive critical failures with previous Netflix adaptations such as Death Note and Cowboy Bebop, the reviews for One Piece seem to be largely positive. This seems to be a high-risk risk, high-reward gamble for the popular streamer, as the anime on which the series is based has continued to run for over 23 years, spanning over one thousand episodes and counting. While the Netflix adaptation affords only brief eight-hour-long episodes, offering a fraction of the animated adventure, plans to green-light future installments are likely inevitable so long as the series garners critical and audience acclaim.
This news may come as a surprise to some fans, as Netflix previously announced that their working budget for One Piece was over $17 million per episode. This makes the series more expensive to produce per episode than other massive hits such as Game of Thrones, Westworld, and The Mandalorian, leaving a number of audiences cautiously optimistic about the expected production quality of the series from the get-go. Only a small handful of series have managed to outspend the One Piece budget, with House of the Dragon, WandaVision, and Stranger Things clocking in at over $20 million per episode each.
In the first 24 hours of release, One Piece has been a hit with fans and critics, already spurring calls for a Second Season.
For a point of reference, this means that the overall cost of the Netflix One Piece series clocks in at over $144 million, roughly $40 million more than the combined cost of the animated series’ 24-year run. Netflix likely felt that this was a sound investment due to the growing influence of anime and manga across the global cultural sphere, which has proven to be a multibillion-dollar industry.
Still, it serves as a massive surprise to the public that Netflix would invest this much into an adaptation of an anime series, given the track record of the streamer in this niche throughout the past few years.
For a point of reference, this means that the overall cost of the Netflix One Piece series clocks in at over $144 million, roughly $40 million more than the combined cost of the animated series’ 24-year run.
Perhaps Netflix executives have done a great deal of due diligence regarding anime and manga in recent years and have ensured only the best and most talented creators have been employed to make use of their massive One Piece budget. Regardless, the premiere of the show seems to be making waves in a more positive capacity than previous Netflix anime adaptations, perhaps signaling a turning point for the streamer in this regard.
As fans continue flooding the streamer to catch the big-budget series, we’ll surely have some answers regarding the likelihood of a second season and beyond in the coming weeks.