Fans of Puella Magi Madoka Magica were caught off guard last September by a surprise announcement that the series’ mobile game Magia Records would be getting a TV anime from Studio SHAFT. While fans were certainly clamoring for more material and gladly accepted this news, what everyone really wanted was a continuation of the original show’s story – and it looks like we might be getting that sooner than we once thought.
Speaking in an MBS-produced pamphlet detailing the history of anime in the Heisei era, which is set to come to a close this year with the abdication of Emperor Heisei, producer and current president of Studio SHAFT Mitsutoshi Kubota made a surprise statement regarding a continuation to the Madoka series. “We are now currently in pre-production for a Madoka sequel. Please look forward to it!” he casually stated in the extract below, shared by Twitter user air_dotter:
— えあドッター (@air_dotter) March 17, 2019
Kubota’s deliberate use of the word “sequel (続編)” all but confirms that this project will indeed be separate from the upcoming Magia Records anime adaptation. After all, that series isn’t a sequel to anything, but an original story set in the Madoka universe.
Most likely then is that this sequel will continue the story of the 2013 film Puella Magi Madoka Magica: Rebellion. While the series of films that Rebellion is part of was originally supposed to just be a set of recap movies, Rebellion took a wildly different approach as the third entry and completely upended the series’ story. As a result, many fans have been eagerly awaiting ever since it released the day that the story continues from this new premise, so I’m sure that this is good news to many.
Such an announcement shouldn’t be much of a surprise to those who have been following SHAFT’s output in the past couple of years, however. The studio’s biggest property next to Madoka, Nisio Isin’s Monogatari, is now coming to an end with Zokuowarimonogatari after ten years. Furthermore, their other long-term project, as in the adaptation of Chica Umino’s March comes in like a lion manga, also finished its second season last year with no announcement of a third on the horizon.
Given this, SHAFT’s release schedule is looking a bit bare. What’s more is that with all of these projects coming to conclusion, their greatest asset Akiyuki Shinbou has just become very free – so I’m sure he’d be very willing and able to direct another Madoka movie. But only time will tell if that ideal scenario will indeed come to pass…