Here’s Netflix One Piece explained with all the juicy details and all the behind-the-scenes facts you need to know.
Eiichiro Oda’s One Piece series is officially out on Netflix, and so far, audiences are loving it!
In fact, the 10-episode production was only been released on August 31, but there’s already hype about the supposed next season. In fact, Netflix just confirmed the second season a few weeks ago.
So, what exactly is the hype about? And what can we expect from Netflix’s latest live-action adaptation? We’ll delve into all of that right below.
When it all began
The Netflix One Piece series was announced as early as July 2017 by Weekly Shonen Jump editor-in-chief Hiroyuki Nakano to commemorate the manga’s 20th anniversary.
For context, the One Piece manga series debuted on July 22, 1997, in Weekly Shonen Jump, a Japanese manga magazine. Since then, there have been 95 volumes released. The anime series, on the other hand, premiered on Fuki TV in 1999 and was produced by Toei Animation.
On June 18, we were graced with the first trailer of One Piece. Here, you can find hefty visuals of what the main characters and their first pirate ship look like. A full-length trailer was released shortly after to celebrate One Piece Day.
For those who haven’t watched the series, the live adaptation covers the East Blue saga from the anime and manga. And yes, this is officially a spoiler alert.
Who’s running the show?
Now, here’s where things get interesting because some big guns are involved in the production of Netflix’s One Piece.
The series was created in partnership with Shueisha, and produced by Tomorrow Studios and Netflix! Steven Maeda (who was involved in shows like Lost and CSI: Miami) and Matt Owens (who worked in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) were announced as showrunners, executives, and writers.
Plus, the author Eiichiro Oda is involved in the production itself!
This isn’t the first time Netflix is delving into the realm of live-action anime adaptation. Their first venture was the Death Note film in 2017. Meanwhile, in 2021, they came out with Cowboy Bebop. Both productions though, sort of failed to live up to the hype of the original fans.
Curious about where the series was filmed? The crew started filming in Cape Town, South Africa at the Cape Town Film Studios in 2020.
Meet the Straw Hats crew
Here’s a brief introduction to the main One Piece characters and who’s playing them.
Monkey D. Luffy
The lovable and elastic Monkey D. Luffy gained the power of rubber after accidentally eating a Devil Fruit as a young child.
Plus, he is the founder and captain of the Straw Hat Pirates, with the goal to find the treasure left behind by Gol D. Roger to ultimately become the Pirate King.
Breakout star Iñaki Godoy, a Mexican actor best known for his role in The Imperfects, a Canadian sci-fi series will be playing One Piece’s main character.
A master of the Three Sword Style, Roronoa Zoro is an ex-bounty hunter turned Straw Hat Pirate who’s on a mission to become the greatest swordsman in the world.
Zoro’s live-action character is brought to life by Mackenyu Maeda, a Japanese actor based in Canada, who rose to prominence after his performance as Arata Wataya in the Chihayafuru live-action trilogy.
Nami is the reliable navigator of the crew who dreams of creating a map of the entire world. Before that though, we get to know her as a thief and pickpocket who’s got a penchant for navigation.
Emily Rudd, an American actress who starred in the Netflix horror film trilogy Fear Street, was cast as Nami.
Hailing from the Syrup village, this cowardly but expert sniper dreams of becoming a brave and renowned warrior. But don’t trust his word, because he tends to tell lies.
And the person playing him? Meet Jacob Romero Gibson, an up-and-coming star who starred in the TV series Greenleaf before landing his One Piece role.
Sanji is the cook of the Straw Hats crew, who dreams of finding the chef’s paradise All Blue. Apart from his culinary prowess, he’s also a skilled fighter like Zoro and Luffy.
In the live action remake, he is played by Taz Skylar, a Spanish actor and screenwriter who gained recognition because of his self-written play, Warheads.
The reviews, so far
In terms of anime series, One Piece is probably one of the more difficult series to remake in a live-action production.
And for all sorts of reasons. First is that it’s set in a completely made-up world. Next, because the characters have special abilities and characteristics. And, last but not least, because of all of those action scenes!
Suffice it to say, that remaking a live-action One Piece series wasn’t going to be easy. But somehow, the production and the writing pulled it off. Oh, and did you know that critics are loving it too
In fact, the first season got a whopping 95% audience score and 86% on the Tomatometer on Rotten Tomatoes!
Here are some excerpts from top critics:
The result is a grand fantasy adventure with The Pirates of the Caribbean as a too-simple comparison, since it doesn’t allow for Luffy’s superpower and the vibrant otherworldly detail. One Piece is uneven, but it’s committed.
Craig Mathieson, Sydney Morning Herald
In simply accepting… small yet crucial oddities, Netflix’s One Piece proves its willingness to hold on to what makes the original property so fantastic.
Angelica Jade Bastien, New York Magazine/Vulture
If the best result one can hope for is an approximation of the original, close or far, what does this version of “One Piece” provide that the original can’t?
Alison Herman, Variety
And there you have it, the different impressions the first season left on critics. For the next season, audiences are looking for even more action and storylines.
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