Attack On Titan Season 4 release date announcement by NHK changed: Shingeki no Kyojin’s final season delayed to 2021?

Attack On Titan Season 4 Key Visaul
A key visual for the Attack On Titan Season 4 anime. Pic credit: MAPPA

Update September 22, 2020: Crunchyroll has confirmed that the Attack On Titan Season 4 release date is scheduled for “later this year” in 2020. The remainder of this story remains as originally published. Please see our new story for the full details.

The official Attack On Titan Season 4 release date announcement by Japanese public broadcaster NHK has been quietly changed. Is this another hint that Shingeki no Kyojin Season 4 release date is being delayed to 2021?

Originally, the announcement stated that Shingeki no Kyojin Season 4 “will broadcast in fall 2020 on NHK General TV”, but now it simply states that NHK will broadcast Attack On Titan: Final Season without any mention of a release time frame.

Even when the Attack On Titan manga made the September 2020 cover of Bessatsu Shonen Magazine the only update mentioned was that the anime is in production.

Similarly, official announcements from animation studio MAPPA (which is replacing WIT Studio) made over the last several months have dropped any reference to the Attack On Titan Season 4 release date.

For example, the official MAPPA Twitter account stated in May 2020 that fans should “look forward to the anime broadcast” without mentioning the previously announced fall 2020 timeframe.

Even the official website’s Broadcast information page does not list the fall 2020 premiere time frame, anymore. Instead, it simply lists a graphic for the NHK broadcast schedule without listing any dates or even a year.

Is an Attack On Titan Season 4 release date still possible for fall 2020?

Anime TV schedules are usually pretty rigid since they follow four seasonal broadcasting time frames divided up into winter, spring, summer, and fall.

One exception is when a series is streaming exclusively on Netflix. For example, WIT Studio’s Great Pretender release date was in June 2020, but then its second season or cour (Case 4) came out in September 2020.

Typically, the exact release dates for anime TV series scheduled for premiering in October will be announced in September. So, it’s highly unusual that the exact release date for SnK Season 4 hasn’t been confirmed considering that September is already halfway over.

Technically, fall 2020 encompasses the fourth quarter anime cour that starts in October and ends in December 2020. While AoT Season 4 could premiere in November or December 2020 it would be highly unusual, especially for such a high profile anime.

Therefore, it’s possible that the producers are having Attack On Titan Season 4 delayed to 2021.

Attack On Titan Movie
A key visual for the Attack On Titan: Movie Chronical, which appears to be a recap of the first three seasons. On July 17, 2020, it had a limited run at select theaters in Japan. Pic credit: WIT Studio

Shingeki no Kyojin Season 4 release date in 2021 debated by anime news leakers

The original Attack On Titan Season 4 release date announcement that claimed fall 2020 was made well before the SARS-COV-2 coronavirus pandemic affected the entire anime industry and delayed many TV shows.

Back in May 2020, anime news leakers began discussing whether the fourth and final season would be delayed to 2021.  Yonkou Productions claimed, “That’s the word around town,” and when he recently heard that NHK removed the fall 2020 reference he tweeted, “I hope this settles things finally.”

On the other hand, Spytrue, who is part of the AIR News group, claimed in late May 2020 that Attack On Titan Season 4 “will still [be] for Fall 2020”. Spytrue hasn’t reacted yet to the latest NHK change, but it should be noted that Spytrue previously claimed in December 2019 that the studio change wasn’t happening.

As always, anime news leaks should be taken with a grain of salt. Let’s just hope the Attack On Titan Season 4 release date is not delayed beyond January 2021. Stay tuned!

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