While this bit of news seems to have flown under the radar, it looks like Rooster Teeth’s long-running RWBY has gone fully Japanese. On February 1st, 2022, an upcoming adaptation known so far as “Team RWBY Project” was announced on social media. While the specifics aren’t available yet, a special stage dedicated to it, featuring the voice cast of the series’ official Japanese dub, will be held at the upcoming AnimeJapan convention on March 26th.
🟥 ⬜️ Team RWBY Project 始動!! ⬛️ 🟨
— TVアニメ『RWBY 氷雪帝国』【公式】 (@TeamRWBYProject) February 1, 2022
For those not familiar with the property, RWBY is a CGI animated web series created by the late Monty Oum in 2013. Despite the tragic circumstances surrounding his death two years later, at the age of 33, his passion project has since evolved into a multimedia franchise. While it has gained something of a “love it or hate it” reputation among Western audiences, lesser known is its reception across the Pacific, especially in Japan. Following the announcement by Rooster Teeth and Warner Bros. Japan in 2014 that the show would receive a Japanese localization, with some strong seiyuu star power to boot, the show proved itself remarkably popular. So much so, in fact, that it would spawn various spin-offs in the Land of the Rising Sun.
The Japanese dub of RWBY was successful enough for a televised version of the first three seasons to be greenlit in 2017. (Source: YouTube)
Over the years, there have been multiple manga based on the series, ranging from multi-part anthologies published by Home-sha and Viz Media, to a full-fledged adaptation by Bunta Kinami that ran in Weekly Shonen Jump from 2018 to 2020. Which isn’t even getting to lead heroine Ruby Rose and her friends popping up in various fanart, as DLC characters in BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle, and starring in the upcoming sidescroller RWBY: Arrowfell (co-developed with Arc System Works). To say that the franchise has taken root among Japanese fans, to the point of almost displacing its American origins, would be an understatement.
The biggest question now, perhaps, is whether Team RWBY Project, whatever it may be, will live up to the hype slowly building up around it. Though given how Monty Oum had such a passionate love for Japanese anime and culture, chances are he would have been more than happy to see the homeland of his inspirations taking up the mantle.
Fan of the series? J-List has RWBY Nendoroid figures in stock.