Eiichiro Oda’s Heavily Involved with Netflix to Ensure the Spirit of ‘One Piece’ Isn’t Lost in Adaptation

one piece live action

One Piece has been running for 25 years and it’s been an adventure for many that grew up with the franchise at any point in time they joined the Straw Hats journey. Soon, a new generation will be introduced to the franchise in a new format with Netflix’s attempt at a live-action adaptation of One Piece. Showrunners Steve Maeda and Matt Owens are hard at work on the production that wrapped up production

As first shared by @OP_Netflix_Fan on Twitter, Netflix’s Director of Original Series Ted Biaselli has shared some details about how the team is tackling the adaptation and just how involved Eiichiro Oda, the creator of One Piece, is with the upcoming live-action series during a recording of the Gayest Episode Ever podcast. Anime adaptations haven’t had the greatest track record. Luckily, Biaselli highlights the importance of that very concept that an anime adaptation is more than just recreating iconic shots or simply using the IP for the sake of it, as highlighted in the recording.

The pressure of live-action anime has always been a disaster and I don’t want that on my record. I want to be the guy who understands what they’re making, and, you know, the intention behind the source material and how do we translate that to bring that to life. As opposed to recreate shot-for-shot or as opposed to taking the IP and throwing everything else away. There is a middle ground to understanding the throughline and the truth that is in all the source material and then figuring out how that makes sense in a live-action cinematic approach.

Ted Biaselli

There’s a sigh of relief hearing those words as many adaptations, anime or not, have focused primarily on recreating the shot composition of the anime rather than focusing on what made it stand out. Cowboy Bebop struggled to reach its audience as there were concerns it strayed too far from the source material while only visually recreating it rather than truly embracing what made the anime the cultural milestone it is today. Luckily, Netflix is taking it quite seriously and Eiichiro Oda is actively involved to ensure that they don’t go “missing the point” at any time while bringing the project to life.

I’ve been with One Piece for the past three years, four years actually, and as far as I am concerned it’s now about how fast you can get it on. My little mantra is “getting right before right now.” And it takes a while and that’s okay. We’re working directly with Eiichiro Oda, who is the creator. He’s got a vision and he’s also never worked in television. So, it’s a give and take sort of education of what works in live-action, what doesn’t work in live-action. And then he tells us: “You guys are missing the point, that’s not what the scene is about. This is what it’s about.”

Ted Biaselli

It also sounds like Oda’s getting a new look at how Western productions go. He’s been heavily involved with the scripts for animated films and anime, but a live-action adaptation is a new beast entirely. Still, knowing just how involved he is does add even more excitement than the project already offered with the enthusiasm the cast and crew shared throughout production. Here’s hoping that some updates on the series aren’t too far away now.

Source: Gayest Episode Ever via Twitter

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