After years of waiting for Netflix’s Knights of Sidonia Season 3, the anime sequel has finally been confirmed — but it’s a Knights of Sidonia movie!
Called Knights of Sidonia: The Star Where Love is Spun (Sidonia no Kishi: Ai Tsumugu Hoshi), the release date is scheduled for May 14, 2021. The runtime for the film is 1 hour and 50 minutes.
But the major news is that the Sidonia no Kishi movie’s story will both adapt and change the ending of the manga series! (See below for more details.)
Sidonia no Kishi manga writer Tsutomu Nihei and Director Hiroyuki Seshita of Polygon Pictures have discussed the possibility of making Knights of Sidonia Season 3 for years.
In 2016, the manga creator was asked about Knights of Sidonia 3 while attending Comic-Con International in San Diego.
Nihei said he was also waiting for Knights of Sidonia Season 3, but he was “not the one who is making it or getting funding for it.” He pointed at director Seshita, saying it was “up to this guy.”
In response, Seshita claimed he did not have time to do Knights Of Sidonia Season 3 right away, but he was “definitely” planning on creating a third season eventually.
This promise required years of waiting since it turns out the director would direct the 2017 Blame! movie, the 2018 Netflix Godzilla trilogy, and the 2019 Levius anime, which isn’t too surprising since anime productions are scheduled years in advance.
At the time, the director also claimed that watching the Netflix Blame! movie would “increase our chance of [Knights Of Sidonia Season 3] coming true.”
Fast-forward to June 2017 and attendees of the Annecy International Animated Film Festival and Market (MIFA) claimed that the director announced the production of both the Blame! 2 movie and Knights of Sidonia Season 3.
Three long years later, the announcement finally arrived that the third season would be a Knights of Sidonia movie.
Director Seshita will return to the production staff as a chief director at anime studio Polygon Pictures, which also produced the 2019 Human Lost movie (see our exclusive Human Lost interview) and the 2020 Drifting Dragons anime.
Seshita will be joined by director Tadahiro Yoshihira, who has worked with the chief director on all of the same projects since Blame! Yoshihira was also responsible for editing the Knights of Sidonia TV series.
Many staff members are also returning. Writers Sadayuki Murai and Tetsuya Yamada will create the script under the supervision of manga creator Nihei.
There is also art director Mitsunori Kataama, production designer Naoya Tanaka, CG graphics supervisor Masayuki Uemoto, animation director Reiji Nagazono, background art director Mitsuo Yoshino, color designer Hironori Nochi, and sound director Yoshikazu Iwanami.
Composer Shuji Katayama is replacing Noriyuki Asakura. The musician is best known for his work on anime such as Naruto, Overlord Seasons 1 through 3, and Saga of Tanya the Evil.
The CAPSULE music group is performing the Knights of Sidonia movie theme song. The preview trailer that was released in early July 2020 included the promotional insert song “Utsusemi.”
The Klockworx company is responsible for distribution. There is no word on if Knights of Sidonia: The Star Where Love is Spun will arrive in Japanese theaters (the first season was released as a recap film in theaters in 2015) or if it will screen exclusively on streaming platforms.
What is currently unknown is Netflix’s role, if any, in the Knights of Sidonia movie. The first two seasons were 24 episodes combined, and they streamed on Netflix U.S. in 2014 and 2015, respectively.
Updated February 16, 2021: Movie runtime confirmed.
Updated January 19, 2021: Knights of Sidonia: The Star Where Love is Spun release date in Japan confirmed! Added trailer.
This article provides everything that is known about Knights of Sidonia: The Star Where Love is Spun (Sidonia no Kishi: Ai Tsumugu Hoshi) and all related news. As such, this article will be updated over time with news, rumors, and analysis. Meanwhile, let’s delve down into what is known for certain.
Knights of Sidonia movie U.S. release date
As of the last update, Polygon Pictures, or any company related to the production of the anime have not officially confirmed the exact Knights of Sidonia movie U.S. release date.
However, the Knights of Sidonia: The Star Where Love is Spun release date for Japan is May 14, 2021.
Details about U.S. theater release dates or streaming platforms have not yet been announced.
Once the news is officially confirmed, this article will be updated with the relevant information.
Knights of Sidonia: The Star Where Love is Spun reboots the Sidonia no Kishi manga’s ending
The story for the anime series is based on the Knights of Sidonia manga series by creator Tsutomu Nihei, who is also known for Blame!, its prequel NOiSE, and Biomega.
Finished in September 2015, the 15 volumes of the Sidonia no Kishi manga were given an official English translation and released in the United States by North American publisher Vertical.
Unfortunately, a Knights of Sidonia manga sequel was never produced or even promised. In 2017, Nihei began serializing the APOSIMZ manga, which is up to Volume 6 as of May 2020.
APOSIMZ may be very loosely connected since the Aposimz seed ship was another human craft that escaped the Guana in the Knights of Sidonia manga.
Even if the two stories share the same universe, the APOSIMZ manga takes place on an artificial planet called Aposimz, and there’s no direct overlap in the main plot.
The Aposimz’ crew lost contact with the Sidonia hundreds of years ago. The two ships would have been hundreds of light-years away from each other.
The first two seasons of the Knights of Sidonia anime series adapted the manga’s story all the way up until Volume 9: Chapter 42.
However, the anime did adapt some of the manga chapters out of order since Nagate Tanikaze and Izana Shinatose’s secret mission did not occur in the manga until Chapter 49.
Otherwise, the Knights of Sidonia movie should pick up the story again in the second half of Volume 9, which leaves six-and-a-half volumes.
While that’s more than a third of the entire story, it doesn’t sound like the movie will leave an opening for an actual Knights of Sidonia Season 3.
The official website says the film will depict “the last battle of Sidonia that bets the existence of humanity.”
To adapt so many chapters, director Yoshihara says the movie will “condense the drama of humanity and the Gauna’s struggle to survive” by weaving a “dense emotional drama.”
Chief Director Seshita also says, “The Sidonia is finally finishing its journey. I would be happy if I could share these last moments with the many fans who supported Cydonia.”
The announcement also states the movie “includes many new contents different from the manga version.”
These should be canon since Nihei is supervising the creation of the story. Both the manga creator and director Yoshihara say the Knights of Sidonia movie will differ in ways that should appeal to fans who have already read the Knights of Sidonia manga’s ending.
“Some people may wonder if readers of the original work who know the ending of the manga’s story may not be able to enjoy the work more purely than the first-timers. However! In Ai Tsumugu Hoshi [The Star Where Love is Spun], you will find out some new info that has not been revealed in the original work!” wrote Nihei. “At the time of serialization [of the manga’s ending], I decided to leave it to the reader’s imagination, so I did not draw [these scenes] in the manga. But that was a lie and I just forgot to draw it! In addition, many elements that are not in the original are added! If you read the original, it is a must-see! Those who haven’t read it will want to read the original after watching the movie! I also want to see it soon!”
The director wrote that “the story was constructed with the hope that not only” long-time manga fans would enjoy it, “but also those who see it for the first time should know more about the magnificence, individuality, and fun of this work.”
Hopefully, the movie will have a long runtime. Some critics of the manga’s ending felt the pacing was rushed, so a film that condenses the plot even further may invite further criticism.
It’s also a chance to change certain events that upset the fans in Chapter 78.
Without getting into spoilers, the Sidonia’s crew experiences a deus ex machina happy ending that stretched the limits of science fiction in a manner that felt “contrived and forced” to some. A major character event that should have been final was even quickly undone!
The existence and nature of the Gauna was mostly a mystery.
The Gauna appeared in human form when first attacking Earth, but that plot thread was left hanging. (Some fans debate whether the Abara manga, which also has Gauna, exists in the same universe or if they’re all loosely connected).
Some fans were not happy with the tonal shift in the manga, which went from SciFi drama/action/politics to focusing on Nagate’s space harem.
Even those into character shipping weren’t happy since characters that ended up in relationships did so based on strange circumstances. One harem member even hooks up with a rando that was never properly fleshed out in the manga.
However, since the film is essentially a retelling of the manga’s ending that introduces new plot elements, it could be heralded as a better ending than the original. We’ll have to wait and watch how it turns out.
Knights of Sidonia: The Star Where Love is Spun move spoilers (plot summary/synopsis)
Note: These spoilers assume that the Knights of Sidonia movie will keep the same general framework as the manga’s ending.
The last time we watched Nagate and the Sidonia crew, the swarms of Gauna were chasing them down into extinction.
The horrifying nature of the Gauna was exemplified by the Crimson Hawk Moth, which mocked the death of Shizuka Hoshijiro by taking on her image.
After defeating the Crimson Hawk Moth, the external war against the Gauna enters a lull, but internal forces make trouble for the Sidonia. A mad scientist named Ochiai has managed to resurrect himself by taking over the body of Norio Kunato, heir of Kunato Developments.
Once an ally to the Immortal Ship Committee, Ochiai became obsessed with making chimeras. His actions resulted in many deaths, and as punishment, his body was killed.
Since his augmented brain contained the ship’s library, his mind couldn’t be similarly destroyed.
The scientist planned for his resurrection by embedding his core memories and personality into blood nematodes, which then used Kunato’s body as a host. Having created Tsumugi Shiraui using the capture placental clone of Hoshijiro, Ochiai creates a new “brother” for Tsumugi.
Kanata’s right eye is a new superweapon called the Graviton Radiation Emitter, which can shatter moons with its power. Ochiai also secretly creates the neencephalon control system, a device that allows human minds to take complete remote control over a chimera.
Thus, the story of the Knights of Sidonia movie will likely feature the young chimera struggling to understand humanity while Ochiai is plotting a second insurrection.
I say “likely” since a movie’s condensed runtime will need to make concessions, but the Graviton Radiation Emitter is a necessary invention for the plot to progress.
The overall plot of the manga’s ending focuses on the fight against the Large Mass Union Ship, an amalgamation of Gauna measuring hundreds of miles across that resembles a giant jellyfish.
Taking on this behemoth would have been impossible before the creation of the Graviton Radiation Emitter.
Usually, Captain Kobayashi would have avoided this deadly obstacle, but the Large Mass Union Ship is in the Lem star system, the first star with habitable planets.
Since Sidonia’s primary mission is to seed planets with humanity, they decide that confronting the Gauna and ending the war is their only option.
Unfortunately, fans will have to wait for the Knights of Sidonia movie release date to see how the film’s story diverges from the manga. Stay tuned!
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