I was stoked beyond belief when an upcoming live-action Attack on Titan (進撃の巨人, Shingeki no Kyojin) movie, based on the manga written and illustrated by Hajime Isayama, was announced last year. The television anime adaptation shown here in the U.S. already has me completely hooked!

Now that the Japanese theatrical release is approaching, here are 5 things you should know about this massively popular post-apocalyptic fantasy.

1)  A teaser was released back on March 19, and an official trailer was just posted by distributor Toho Company Ltd. on April 17. Sweet! (My only complaint is "Armin" not being blond. He needs to stand out.)



Because the TV anime series setting has a cleaner, medieval tone, the gritty feel of the new trailer shocked me at first. But that grittiness (which comes from the manga) is needed to give realism to the Titans running amok eating every human in sight, and it's grown on me. A cleaner tone probably would have resulted in something cartoon-ish.

2)  Part 1 of the live-action movie will be unleashed in Japanese theaters on August 1 of this year. Part 2, titled Attack on Titan: End of the World, will come to theaters on September 19. Very cool, not having to suffer and wait a year or years to get to the next installment.

There are no plans for a U.S. release so far, but hopefully DVDs/Blu-rays will be headed to our shores (fingers crossed). Behold, the official posters and flyer making the rounds.

3)  The hit anime series that hooked me so well on Hulu has spawned novels, video games, guidebooks, amusement park attractions, and mind-boggling amounts of brand merchandise worldwide. Recent reports say that a project to take the live action to television this summer is also in the works. This new TV series will tie both parts of the upcoming films together and feature character "Zoë Hange" (Hanji Zoe), played by Satomi Ishihara

4)  What it's all about: Once upon a time, gigantic humanoid creatures called Titans appeared out of nowhere and began devouring humans like fruit off of a tree without reason or remorse, nearly wiping them out. One hundred peaceful years after that horror, the remains of humanity live sheltered behind three vast, concentric circular walls, many of them never having seen a Titan — until the sudden appearance of a Colossal Titan over the first wall starts the slaughter all over again. *shudder*

5)  Last year, Subaru Japan advertised its Forester SUV with a live-action TV commercial featuring two regular Titans and a Colossal Titan, ha ha. Rather than the Titans being complete CG, they were actors in special effects makeup, and the Colossal was a 2-meter-tall puppet controlled by 7 people. It's true!

Seeing the AoT franchise growing by leaps and bounds like this is so exciting.

Are you a manga or anime fan? Do you think the new AoT trailer is a hit or a miss?

Attack on Titan stars Japanese actor Miura Haruma, who you can see in the tear-jerking series The Hours of My Life below:

All Images: Shingeki-seyo.com

Stephe is a fantasy and paranormal writer who lives for Anime, Doctor Who, telenovelas, and Asian dramas. She co-founded Cloud USA, a Rain (비) fan site for English speakers, with her best friend Terri and enjoys sharing interesting tidbits on DramaFever in her spare time.

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(Sources: 1 / 2 / 3)