So, something tells me that this is going to be a divisive one.
Earlier today, fans of the Kemono Friends franchise gathered at the “Kemono Friends LIVE ~ PPP LIVE” concert event. During the show, it was announced that the Kemono Friends 2 anime TV series is still in the works. A new trailer for the project was revealed, which features a new animal friend batting at a purple CGI eye… thing.
The show also announced that open casting will be held for a new voice unit in the Kemono Friends franchise. The show’s staffers are seeking women, aged 16 to 20, who are “mentally and physically healthy.” Previous skill is not required, though those applying cannot have a contract with another agency. The deadline to apply is September 10.
Kadokawa confirmed that a second season of Kemono Friends was in the works in 2017.
Kemono Friends began life as a smartphone game from publisher Nexon, which launched in March 2015. The game ended service on December 14, 2017, ahead of the anime’s January 10 première. In February, Nexon announced that, despite the anime’s popularity, the game wouldn’t return. A spokesperson softened the message later, stating that it’s “possible” for a revival of the game.
The Kemono Friends anime is based on said smartphone game. TATSUKI directed the show at Yaoyorozu, with Shigenori Tanabe (Danchi Tomoo) writing and overseeing the show’s scripts. Sgt. Frog creator Mine Yoshizaki is credited with the original character concept designs.
Crunchyroll streamed Kemono Friends as it aired in Japan. They describe the show as:
About The story takes place in Japari Park, an enormous integrated zoo built somewhere in this world. A mysterious substance found there, called “Sand Star,” causes the animals to turn into humanoid beings called “Animal Girls”! These new creatures spend every day peacefully with the zoo’s visitors… but after some time, a lost child turns up in the park. The child’s attempt to find the way home turns into a great adventure with the Animal Girls!
A Kemono Friends stage play is in the works, along with an unspecified “new screen project” that’s separate from the previously-released “Episode 12.1” special. A second season of the series was unveiled in July with the release of the show’s official guidebook.
In September 2017, Kemono Friends anime director TATSUKI announced that he was no longer attached to the franchise. Kadokawa Dwango President Nobuo Kawakami reported that he was concerned about the incident and that discussions were going on between Dwango and Kadokawa.
On September 27, 2017, the Kemono Friends website posted a notice, which stated that Yaoyorozu “made use of the franchise without sharing information, or reaching out to all relevant parties” through the proper channels and that Yaoyorozu left production due to being unable to comply with these terms in advance.
The entire incident prompted outrage among the fan and creator communities, alike. In December, Yaoyorozu president Keiyo Fukuhara issued a statement regarding Yaoyorozu and Kadokawa’s relationship on the Kemono Friends project. Fukuhara announced that his studio was no longer attached to the project.