Acclaimed director Shinichirō Watanabe (Cowboy Bebop, Samurai Champloo) is set to make his return to the sci-fi action genre with Lazarus, a new Toonami original anime series that’s officially been greenlit by Adult Swim.
“The year is 2052 — an era of unprecedented peace and prosperity prevails across the globe. The reason for this: mankind has been freed from sickness and pain. Nobel Prize-winning neuroscientist Dr. Skinner has developed a miracle cure-all drug with no apparent drawbacks called Hapuna. Hapuna soon becomes ubiquitous… and essential. However, soon after Hapuna is officially introduced, Dr. Skinner vanishes.
Three years later, the world has moved on. But Dr. Skinner has returned – this time, as a harbinger of doom. Skinner announces that Hapuna has a short half-life. Everyone who has taken it will die approximately three years later. Death is coming for this sinful world – and coming soon.
As a response to this threat, a special task force of 5 agents is gathered from across the world to save humanity from Skinner’s plan. This group is called “Lazarus.” Can they find Skinner and develop a vaccine before time runs out?”
Lazarus is produced by anime studio MAPPA (Attack on Titan, Jujutsu Kaisen, Chainsaw Man). The show’s high-octane action sequences are designed by Chad Stahelski, stuntman, and director of the John Wick film franchise. The score comes from a variety of renowned jazz and electronic artists, including jazz saxophonist Kamasi Washington (West Coast Get Down); producer, DJ, and musician Floating Points (Floating Points Ensemble); and producer, DJ, and musician Bonobo.
In regards to the series, Watanabe said, “As I embark on this creative journey, I can’t help but feel that this project will serve as a culmination of my career so far. I hope you enjoy it.”
Those attending the sold-out Adult Swim Festival in San Diego this weekend will have a chance to see Watanabe at the Toonami on the Green event on Saturday, July 22 at 5:15 p.m, at which time fans will get a first look at Lazarus, as well as other upcoming Toonami original series.