On August 12, 2022, reliable anime news leaker Sugoi LITE (@SugoiLITE) tweeted that Disney+ has won the rumored bidding war for the rights to stream the highly-anticipated upcoming TV anime Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War.
YouTuber Jaymes Hanson, who is known for his Bleach content, created a video about how Bleach being acquired by Disney+ has been confirmed.
Apparently, Bleach anime fans are freaking out about the possibility that Disney+ won’t simulcast the episodes similar to Summer Time Render. This would mean that instead of the episodes being released about 1 hour after the Japanese release they would be released in bulk.
If they are released in bulk they would likely be released in multiple cours, or groups of 12 episodes at a time. This would make sense due to the fact Disney+ won’t just be translating it into English, but multiple languages.
You can watch Jaymes Hanson’s video here:
The video begins with James claiming Disney has won the rights to Bleach. He explains that this acquisition will only affect the International front and not the Japanese release of Bleach.
Due to the fact that VIZ Media owns the license to distribute Bleach, but doesn’t have their own online streaming service it was inevitable that Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War would end up in a bidding war between streaming services, such as: Crunchyroll, Netflix, Amazon Prime and in this case Disney+.
Jaymes went on to say that just because Sony owns Aniplex that doesn’t mean they get first priority. If that were the case they wouldn’t have to go to VIZ Media and ask for the video streaming rights.
Disney+ acquires Bleach’s entire catalogue
Apparently, Disney+ had bought the rights to Bleach’s entire catalogue. There are likely to be more announcements during the Disney Expo 2022, which will be held in September 2022.
Jaymes Hanson’s source is reputable anime news leakers, such as Sugoi LITE. But no official source has confirmed the Bleach Disney Plus streaming deal.
The fact that Disney+ has bought Bleach’s entire catalogue makes it look like they’re setting the stage to premiere Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War.
James pointed out that during the Crunchyroll Expo 2022, it was strange there wasn’t a single peep about Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War. Crunchyroll make it clear that they will be streaming the following anime: My Hero Academia Season 6, Mob Psycho III, and Chainsaw Man. Chainsaw Man will allegedly be their most important acquisition for the upcoming season.
The premiere of Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War is set for September and with no announcements from Crunchyroll that makes this leaked news even more probable.
James went on to explain to people that were under the misconception that because Crunchyroll is a company under Sony they should have had the money to acquire Bleach, but that because they have a fixed annual budget, and probably used a lot of that budget on Chainsaw Man they had to let Bleach slip through their fingers. MAPPA probably asked for a lot of money for Chainsaw Man.
Disney+ has become the largest streaming platform in the world
It was recently announced that Disney+ has officially surpassed Netflix in subscribers, making it the largest streaming platform in the world. This means that if Disney+ truly acquires Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War there will be more eyes on it. Disney+ will probably market Bleach better than Crunchyroll would have.
Jaymes then addresses the biggest question Bleach anime fans have and are worrying about – will it be simulcast? To be a simulcast it has to be aired about one hour after the Japanese release or at the same time.
If Disney+ doesn’t simulcast it – it won’t be on anyone’s radar. The same thing has happened with Summertime Render, which Disney+ has also acquired the rights for.
Jaymes claims that if Disney+ doesn’t simulcast Bleach it would be VIZ Media’s fault (as the license holder) for not putting that as a requirement in the contract.
Japanese promotion of Bleach and the upcoming series continues to be better than in the West. If Disney+ doesn’t simulcast it might force fans to watch the anime illegally so that they can watch it weekly.
Another concern that Jaymes addresses is that fans appear to be worried about whether or not Bleach will end up being censored. Disney has no say in the production of the anime, so censorship seems highly unlikely.
Mark Himself tweeted that he’s concerned about Disney+ being “family friendly”.
Apparently, Disney+ has also acquired the rights to Made in Abyss and has plans for its own “Anime Tab”. If Disney+ has its own Anime Tab it would make sense to use Bleach as its marketing headliner.
Bleach has old anime fans and new ones, so it has a very wide audience. Bleach would be the big name they need to push their upcoming anime catalogue.
Are you looking forward to watching Bleach: Thousand-Year Blood War on Disney+? Are you worried it won’t be simulcast? Are you worried it will be censored? Let us know in the comment section below!