Kyoto Animation's Free!–the Final Stroke– 'Final Chapter' Anime Film Dives Into 2 Parts in 2021, 2022
Part 1 to release September 2021, Part 2 to release April 2022
In celebration of the 8th anniversary of the airing of the first episode of Free! - Iwatobi Swim Club, Kyoto Animation announced tonight that the delayed Free! 2020 film will be released as Free!–the Final Stroke– and come out in two parts, the first part on September 17, 2021, and the second part on April 22, 2022. A teaser trailer and a new visual were released for the film.
The tagline for the film reads in English: “Let’s go to the stage of glory…”
The film's website confirms the return of series director Eisaku Kawanami as the director of the films at Kyoto Animation. Most of the Free! series was animated at Animation Do, the Osaka branch of Kyoto Animation, but the studio was merged back into Kyoto Animation on November 1, 2020. The website also confirms the return of the voice actor for Haruka but doesn’t mention any other character.
Previously released visuals:
Originally, Free!–the Final Stroke– was scheduled to be released around the Tokyo 2020 Olympics in summer 2020, but due to an arson attack on Kyoto Animation Studio 1 on July 18, 2019, which killed 36 of the company’s employees, including High Speed! Free! Starting Days director Yasuhiro Takemoto, the film was pushed back.
Not much is known about the story of Free!–the Final Stroke– as of yet, but it is being advertised as the “final chapter” of the franchise. Free!–the Final Stroke– part one is scheduled to be released on September 17, 2021, and the second part is scheduled to be released on April 22, 2022. Catch up with the splash on Crunchyroll with all the TV anime seasons of Free! - Iwatobi Swim Club streaming now.
Source: Free! on Twitter
Daryl Harding is a Japan Correspondent for Crunchyroll News. He also runs a YouTube channel about Japan stuff called TheDoctorDazza, tweets at @DoctorDazza, and posts photos of his travels on Instagram.