Mappa Stage 2023: Every announcement, release details, and more

Mappa Stage 2023: Every announcement, release details and more (Image via Mappa)
Mappa Stage 2023: Every announcement, release details, and more (Image via Mappa)

The Mappa Stage 2023, a hotly-anticipated event, unfolded amidst much fanfare at the Tokyo Garden Theater on May 21, 2023. The event, hosted by the juggernaut anime studio Mappa, brought forth a flurry of excitement with its numerous surprises, announcements, and detailed release schedules for upcoming projects.

With a roster of high-profile series making their presence felt at the event, Mappa Stage 2023 was a sight to behold for anime enthusiasts worldwide. This grand event was not only a showcase of Mappa’s upcoming line-up but also a testament to the studio’s unceasing commitment to delivering top-tier anime content to fans.

The official Mappa Stage 2023 website listed the series that would be featured during the event, including Vinland Saga, Hell’s Paradise, Jujutsu Kaisen, Attack on Titan, Chainsaw Man, and Campfire Cooking in Another World with My Absurd Skill.

Additionally, trailers for two new projects, a movie titled Alice to Therese no Maboroshi Kojo and an anime series named Bucchigiri, were shared on stage, both of which have a scheduled release window. The Mappa Stage 2023 was indeed a vibrant event, radiating with intense anticipation and revelry.


Highlights and announcements: An in-depth analysis of Mappa Stage 2023

1) Hell's Paradise

The Mappa Stage 2023 surprised fans as it commenced with the panel of Hell’s Paradise. The Hell’s Paradise stage featured an insightful interaction with four cast members of the series: Yumiri Hanamori (Yamada Asaemon Sagiri), Ryouhei Kimura (Aza Chobei), Rie Takahashi (Yuzuriha), and Chikahiro Kobayashi, with a conspicuous absence of the lead character Gabimaru’s voice actor, Chiaki Kobayashi.

The cast members opened up about their experiences working on the anime, discussing their favorite scenes and character traits in detail, providing fans with a closer look at their portrayal of the characters. An intriguing segment of the stage was a quiz session, where the voice actors were challenged to demonstrate their knowledge of the anime and its characters, adding a fun and competitive element to the event.


2) Campfire Cooking in Another World with My Absurd Skill

Mappa Stage 2023 has been the center of many captivating events, most notably when Yuma Uchida, a cast member of Campfire Cooking in Another World with My Absurd Skill, surprised his co-stars by cooking a mouth-watering beef curry.

Known for his role as Tsuyoshi Mukouda in the anime, Uchida demonstrated his real-life culinary skills, creating an interesting connection between his personal interests and his character’s portrayal. The feast was savored by cast members, including Hina Kino, Satoshi Hino, Maaya Uchida, and director Kiyoshi Matsuda.

Adding to his artistic versatility, Uchida also discussed his musical contribution to the anime, his hit single Happy Go Journey, which is the theme song for the show. This highlighted his wide range of talents, from voice acting and cooking to music, underlining his significant role in the overall production.

These unexpected moments, including Uchida’s culinary surprise, contributed to the electrifying atmosphere of Mappa Stage 2023, embodying the studio’s excellence and creativity.


3) Attack on Titan

The Mappa Stage 2023’s third panel, Attack on Titan, featured Yuki Kaji (Eren Yaegar), Yui Ishikawa (Mikasa Ackerman), and Romi Park (Hange Zoe), who live-acted selected scenes and discussed their experiences with their characters. The event also marked Romi Park’s departure from the show following the on-screen death of her character, Hange Zoe, during the previous part of the season.

The Mappa Stage 2023 event also unveiled the final key visual for Attack on Titan Final Season Part 3 Part 2, set to premiere in Fall 2023 on NHK General. This visual depicts a serene cottage atop a hill, with the shadows of two Titans present and a line of text that reads Take care, Eren, referring to a key scene from the Attack on Titan manga.

Director Yuichiro Hayashi emphasized the intentional simplicity of the final visual, encouraging audiences to expand their imaginations regarding the upcoming finale.


4) Vinland Saga

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The fourth panel of Mappa Stage 2023 spotlighted the anime Vinland Saga, a series admired for its complex characters and compelling storyline. As the second season neared its conclusion, the stage event released the final trailer, stoking anticipation among fans.

In attendance were the cast members, including Yuto Uemura and Shunsuke Takeuchi, who voice lead characters Thorfinn and Einar, director Shuhei Yabuto, and producer Hiroya Hasegawa.

The event also featured a live music performance of the opening theme, River by Anonymouz, and a brief appearance from Vinland Saga creator Makoto Yukimura, who expressed gratitude to fans and teased future storylines.

Unfortunately, no announcements were made regarding the next season, which disappointed some fans. Vinland Saga creator Yukimura encouraged those who haven’t yet explored the manga to do so and eagerly anticipated the remaining episodes of the second season. The stage showcased the immense talent behind Vinland Saga and succeeded in raising excitement for the concluding episodes of the current season.


5) Chainsaw Man

The fifth panel at Mappa Stage 2023 was dedicated to the popular anime series Chainsaw Man. Despite the anticipation for new updates about the second season of this widely followed manga adaptation by Tatsuki Fujimoto, fans were left disappointed as no news was announced.

The event included the presence of voice actors Kikonosuke Toya (Denji), Fairouz Ai (Power), and Shogo Sakata (Aki Hayakawa), who participated in a talk show, played clips from the first season, and showcased a range of series memorabilia for purchase. However, the absence of a second-season trailer or release date left fans eagerly waiting for more information.

The only indication of a second season comes from a December 2022 tweet by Mappa that read See you again with an image of Denji and Pochita. Despite this hint and the excitement surrounding Mappa Stage 2023, no updates on the project's progress were shared, leading to dissatisfaction among fans.

The event, while entertaining due to the cast interactions and talk shows, did not fully meet expectations due to the lack of news about the second season.


6) Jujutsu Kaisen

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At the Mappa Stage 2023, a new trailer for Jujutsu Kaisen season 2 was unveiled, focusing on Gojo’s Past Arc and the Shibuya Arc. The panel comprised Junya Enoki (Yuji Itadori), Yuma Uchida (Megumi Fushiguro), Asami Seto (Nobara Kugisaki), and Megumi Ogata (Yuta Okkotsu), who shared their experiences, bonded over their work, and engaged with an audience of over 30k viewers.

They kicked off the event by praising the opening songs Kaikaikitan by Eve and Vivid Vice by Who-ya (extended version) and showing glimpses of intense fights from the Jujutsu Kaisen 0 movie, with a particular highlight on the song Ichizu by King Gnu.

The second season's trailer put Suguru Geto into the spotlight, featured Toji Fushiguro for the first time, and marked the commencement of dubbing. Despite the focus on Gojo’s past arc, character previews for the Shibuya arc were also presented.

However, Yuta Okkotsu was noticeably absent from the preview, hinting at his reappearance in the manga only in chapter 137. Megumi Ogata shared her industry experiences and discussed her challenges with voicing fast-paced fights and adapting her voice according to the situation.

The stage ended with heartfelt messages from the voice actors, expressing their excitement and inviting fans to tune in for the next season, which is set to release on July 6. Despite the intense focus on Suguru Geto in the trailer, the voice actors' enthusiasm and shared experiences brought a unique and captivating dynamic to the event.


7) Bucchigiri

At the Mappa Stage 2023 event, Studio Mappa announced a new original anime series titled Bucchigiri, scheduled for release in January 2024. Hiroko Utsumi, known for her work on Banana Fish, SK8 the Infinity, Free! Iwatobi Swim Club, and K-ON!, promises to be an exciting addition to Mappa's repertoire.

The plot follows Arahito, a delinquent who reunites with his former best friend and becomes entangled in a fierce battle that leads to the emergence of a significant demonic shadow. Drawing parallels to a Yankee-style narrative blended with elements from One Thousand and One Nights, Bucchigiri promises to deliver a seriously presented story by a dedicated team.

The event unveiled a teaser visual and promotional video, with fans eagerly anticipating this new project from Utsumi and Mappa.


8) Alice to Therese no Maboroshi Kojo

At the conclusion of the Mappa Stage 2023 event, Studio Mappa unveiled a new trailer and release date for the upcoming anime film Alice to Therese no Maboroshi Kojo, written and directed by Mari Okada. The film, set to open in Japan on September 15, 2023, features Junya Enoki, Reina Ueda, and Misaki Kuno in the leading roles.

The story revolves around Masamune, a third-year middle school student living in a town where time has come to a standstill due to an explosion at a steelworks factory. Masamune, along with his enigmatic classmate Atsumi and a mysterious girl who cannot speak, disrupts the world’s balance, igniting a wave of “love impulse” that begins to shatter their everyday existence.

The film’s production team includes assistant director Tadashi Hiramatsu, character designer and chief animation director Yuriko Ishii, and art director Kazuki Higashiji, all of whom collaborated on Okada’s previous film, Maquia - When the Promised Flower Blooms. The film’s music is composed by Masaru Yokoyama and will be distributed by Warner Bros.


Stay tuned for more anime and manga updates as 2023 progresses.

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