Webtoons have well and truly made a space for themselves in the Otaku consciousness, rising in popularity alongside mediums such as manga. And because of their massive appeal, it’s no wonder that a lot of these webtoons are getting adapted for the screen in the form of live-action shows and even animation projects. So, when Solo Leveling came out to dominate the webtoon scene as it did, fans had one question: Could Solo Leveling get an anime soon?
It wouldn’t be the first time an Isekai-style webtoon was getting animated. I mean, we all saw how massively successful Tower Of God went on to be. So, clearly there is an audience for this sort of thing and a lot of untapped potential in picking up webtoons for the source material.
This is when rumors of Solo Leveling getting an anime adaptation came about, fans were excited. Again, it wasn’t a surprise, especially after the video game announcement. Not only has author Chugong’s Solo Leveling been the top-rated light novel for years but its webtoon release only propelled it to greater heights. The gorgeous art style by Jang Sung Ruk easily lends itself to being animated beautifully so it’s easy to see where the speculation came from.
So, is there any truth to this speculation? Apparently so! Isekai-action fans will be happy to know that, yes, Solo Leveling is getting a Crunchyroll anime adaptation in 2023! A1 Pictures will be animating the masterpiece.
With that said, let’s discuss the details!
A Brief History Of Solo Leveling:
The origins of Solo Leveling share similarities with another extremely famous anime, Sword Art Online. Like Sword Art Online, Solo Leveling was a self-published web novel until it got picked up and polished for a light novel release by Yen Press in the West under the name Only I Level Up.
It’s easy to see the appeal of the story. It’s a classic underdog tale about how an E-rank class Hunter goes on to become a living God in a strange world that relies on game mechanics. And with a powerful but likable protagonist like Sung Jin-Woo, the story doesn’t end up being cliché or boring.
After its positive reception, it got made into a manhwa-style webtoon with a phenomenal release. It was so well received that Tapas quickly picked it up for an English release as well. Then came the news for a game adaptation by the gaming giant NetMarble Corp came this year alongside a possible drama serialization.
So, safe to say that this anime adaptation was a long, long time coming.
The Signs For An Anime Were Always There!
Though we didn’t have concrete information before, hints were floating all over the internet that fans considered to be clues towards a possible animation project. And you know what they say, where there’s smoke, there’s fire!
One of the biggest clues was when the company GMO Internet registered a domain under the Solo Leveling name after months of speculation. This is the same company that managed the website for the Sword Art Online anime series. Again, not surprising considering how both web novels are at top of the list when it comes to their particular genre.
However, it was when AnimeHype, a Twitter account known for credible anime news, tweeted that the fandom finally let themself accept that maybe, just maybe this isn’t some troll. According to the tweet, the Solo Leveling anime is going to be a collaborative work between the two media houses Aniplex and Crunchyroll.
And at this point, it was no surprise that the animation studio being employed to make this show a reality was going to be none other than Studio A-1 Pictures. Studio A-1 is responsible for animating some of the biggest anime right now which include Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War, Erased, and, yes, Sword Art Online. What a shocker.
An official announcement should be coming this July 2022, with a possible release date as well!
Webtoons And Anime: The New Trend?
It isn’t all that shocking that webtoons have become popular source material to base anime on. Some amazing stories are being told by the medium. And that’s why, honestly, getting Solo Leveling adapted was only a matter of time.
We’ve already seen that fans are into this story and that they do extremely well when translated from paper to animation. I mean, with the anime versions of Tower Of God and The God Of Highschool being so successful, we can already see how webtoons are carving their niche in the genre. The anime adaptations for both were extremely well received so we can easily expect more to come.
The anime industry has set its eyes on the manhwa industry, and as someone who is a huge fan of both, I am more than just a little excited to see some of my favorite stories getting an anime release as well.
Maybe we can get some of that attention on the more romantic manhwa too? Here’s hoping I can manifest a Remarried Empress anime in the future!