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Crunchyroll Reaches 4 Million Subscribers, Will Develop Series With Idris and Sabrina Elba

Stephanie Sengwe

Crunchyroll announced today that they hit the four million subscriber mark in January, adding a solid one million users in the six months since they announced they hit three million.

The Japanese anime-centric streaming service also announced that they are developing a new series in partnership with Idris and Sabrina Elba. Currently titled, “Dantai,” the Afro-futuristic science fiction series will be set in a city where the rise of biotechnology has created an ever-widening gap between the haves and have-nots. Two rising stars from either side of this divide are pitted against each other in a story that will ultimately explore equality and kinship within a corrupt society.

“For more than a decade, through anime and anime-inspired Originals, Crunchyroll has been leading the charge for the popularization of adult dramatic animation and we are fast becoming the epicenter for the next generation of animation fans, as is evidenced by our incredible growth in registered users and subscribers” said Joanne Waage, general manager, Crunchyroll.

“Gens Y and Z have experienced superhero fatigue and are hungry for the new stories and ideas that our creators tell. This development deal with Sabrina and Idris Elba is another example of how we’re working with best-in-class partners to bring in new audiences and tell fresh and compelling stories through a medium that transcends genres and generations.”

In December, AT&T sold Crunchyroll to Funimation, a Sony-owned anime streaming service for $1.175 billion. With the acquisition, Sony added Crunchyroll’s 90 million free members and three million paying subscribers across more than 200 countries and regions. Sony also gained Crunchyroll’s vast library of over 1,000 anime titles.

Last February, the service announced eight new shows, spanning the adventure-fantasy-historical fiction genres. These shows are produced with noted publishers, including Kodansha, and animation studios, such as MAPPA.