With Bakuman leaving VIZ Media's digital manga anthology Shonen Jump Alpha, the timing was perfect for Viz to implement a replacement in Rurouni Kenshin Restoration, a.k.a. Rurouni Kenshin Cinema-Ban. Editor-in-chief Andy Nakatani discussed plans with About.com:Manga.
Rurouni Kenshin Restoration, which ties into the live-action adaptation of Nobuhiro Watsuki's samurai action manga, made its debut in the June 2012 issue of monthly Japanese anthology Jump SQ ahead of the movie's August 25 Japanese release. The first chapter will cross over to the North American digital weekly in the the May 21, 2012 issue of Shonen Jump Alpha.
Rurouni Kenshin Restoration will appear monthly in Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha, or to be more exact, a couple of weeks after each chapters appear in Japan. So, just like the other series, if it takes a break in Japan, it won't appear in the corresponding issue of Alpha.
We want to put cool stuff in Alpha, and Rurouni Kenshin the first time around was such a great series!
Also, I wouldn't necessarily call it "filling a slot." Sure, Bakuman ended and that left Alpha with only five instead of six series, but at the same time, I wouldn't equate a monthly series (albeit with a slightly higher page count) to a weekly series. We want to keep making Shonen Jump Alpha better, and adding this new Rurouni Kenshin series is just one of the things we have in store...
Shonen Jump Alpha is also offering a deal for new subscribers. Sign up before June 22 and you'll also get an exclusive limited edition Yu-Gi-Oh! card. Visit Shonen Jump Alpha's website for more details.