Otaku USA Magazine
The Team Behind Blade Runner: Black Lotus Is Perfect

Blade Runner: Black Lotus has a heck of a team behind it

Blade Runner: Black Lotus is just a few days away. Soon, we’ll get to see another window into the world of the enduring sci-fi universe. And while we don’t fully know what’s ahead, one thing is certain: the staff is spot on.

Blade Runner has been an inspiration for creators all over the world for decades. And some of those creators are taking the wheel — as well as some well known for their sci-fi storytelling prowess. Check out a few of the names behind the upcoming series.


Shinji Aramaki

Bubblegum Crisis

Blade Runner: Black Lotus has a duo of notable directors at the helm. One is Shinji Aramaki, a long-time presence in the world of anime. His mechanical designs have appeared in Genesis Climber MOSPEADA, Megazone 23, and many other series. And he’s got an impressive directorial career, too. Those two roles intersect in a lot of places — but for our purposes, Bubblegum Crisis is where we’re looking.

The classic sci-fi OVA takes inspiration from several films of its time, including The Terminator, Streets of Fire, and (appropriately) Blade Runner. He also had a hand in the designs for 2017’s Blade Runner Black Out 2022. And, as it happens, he often works alongside another director:


Kenji Kamiyama

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex

Black Lotus will see Aramaki and Kamiyama collaborating not for the first time, and likely not the last. The duo share directorial duties on Netflix’s Ultraman and Ghost in the Shell SAC 2045. Kamiyama already has plenty of works to his name beyond that.

He’s got Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex (two series and a film) to his name. 2009’s Eden of the East is his, too — a tense political thriller with character designs by Chica Umino. And he’s directed multiple Cyborg 009 remakes, which also feels appropriate. (He apparently did backgrounds for the original DuckTales, too. That’s not relevant, we just think it’s neat.)


Shinichiro Watanabe

Cowboy Bebop

Surely we don’t need to explain by now who this is. But in case you need it: he’s behind Cowboy Bebop, Carole & Tuesday, Space Dandy, and so much more. The first of those in particular lends a lot of credence to his presence. His lived-in futures and integration of tech into his stories fit the aesthetic.

Black Lotus continues from Black Out 2022, which Watanabe directed. He serves as creative producer for the project — meaning we’ll likely see a lot of that Black Out story and vibe carry over. There’s obviously a very different look, given the 3DCG animation. But with these three at the wheel, color us interested.

Blade Runner: Black Lotus is scheduled to premiere on November 13.

Kara Dennison

Kara Dennison is a writer, editor, and presenter with bylines at Crunchyroll, Sci-Fi Magazine, Sartorial Geek, and many others. She is a contributor to the celebrated Black Archive line, with many other books, short stories, and critical works to her name.