Having recently celebrated its 20th Anniversary, One piece has seldom taken time off for its weekly release schedule. Unfortunately in the wake of this pandemic, Toei Animation has announced that production on the One Piece anime will be suspended for the foreseeable future. After a report surfaced earlier this week noting that this might be the case, it was officially confirmed through an official statement from Toei Animation themselves.
Toei Animation’s statement reads, “Due to the state of emergency in Japan caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, we have carefully considered the safety measures for the spread and have decided to suspend the simulcast and Japanese broadcasting of both “One Piece” & our new series, “Digimon Adventure:” for the time being. Updates on the return of both series will be provided as soon as we know. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time. Please stay safe and healthy.”
— Toei Animation (@ToeiAnimation) April 20, 2020
Considering that the weekly schedule of the anime would likely to be impossible to maintain, this hiatus was unfortunately expected. This probably won’t be the last anime to be suspended at this time, but it’s definitely going to upset fans given that the anime is now covering the second act of the Wano Country arc.
Fans would indeed understand that the team behind One Piece and those at Toei Animation have to be kept safe and healthy throughout this time as well. Even though this hiatus will definitely hurt, it’s for the best as it means that less people are at the risk of transmission of the COVID-19 disease.