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Cowboy Bebop Creator Says Netflix Adaptation Wasn’t ‘Clearly Not Cowboy Bebop’

Netflix has been in a series of live-action animated adaptations with one of the most controversial being Cowboy Bebop. The ill-fated adaptation was canceled just three weeks after it aired, but anime series creator Shinichiro Watanabe is now talking about how he felt about the production.

In an interview with Forbes magazineWatanabe recalled how Netflix sent him material from the show for him to review. “For the new live-action adaptation on Netflix, they sent me a video to review and check,” said Watanabe. “It started with a scene in a casino, which made it very difficult to keep going. I stopped there and only saw that opening scene”.


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This statement seems like the final nail in the coffin for the series, as since the first reveal, fans have been disappointed with the visual style and presentation. Hearing its creator, who is credited as a producer and consultant, say the show isn’t something he can sit through is probably very helpful to those who felt the same. Criticism takes on even more daring when the extent to which Watanabe’s career was rich is also considered. Aside from Cowboy Bebop Watanabe, he has also helped out on projects like Samurai Champloo, Space Dandy, and Carol & Tuesday, all shows with a strong visual identity as well as deep storytelling.

Watanabe said of the series, “It obviously wasn’t Cowboy Bebop and I realized at that point that if I didn’t participate, it wouldn’t be Cowboy Bebop. I felt like maybe I should have done this. Although the value of the original animation is somewhat higher now.” Although it was probably made in jest, there is a point to be made – the original anime took on a new light after the live-action release. What was already seen as a mainstay of anime, the show became a talking point about how anime could make use of its visual medium to tell stories that were otherwise impossible in live-action. This should be something Netflix has in mind as they near a new live-action adaptation of One Piece, which seems like a tougher sell for fans, as the series features a highly exaggerated style along with elements like Luffy’s GumGum powers, which could be a nightmare for effects artists. digital to submit.

The rest of the interview should be a treat for fans of Watanabe’s work as he explains much of his career, including his early days at Sunrise. The interview also touches on his mentor, Ryōsuke Takahashi, who directed the sci-fi horror property Blue Gender, along with the lessons he learned working with Western animator Peter Chung on Animatrix.

Next: Best anime like Cowboy Bebop

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