The official website for the World Witches franchise posted the second promotional video and a key visual for the Dai-501 Tōgō Sentō Kōkū-dan Strike Witches: Road to Berlin (501st Joint Fighter Wing Strike Witches: Road to Berlin) television anime series on Saturday. The video reveals that the anime will premiere in October.
Kadokawa also posted the abbreviated one-chorus version of the music video for "Flying Skyhigh," the first single by the Renmei Kūgun Kōkū Mahō Ongakutai Luminous Witches (Allied Air Force Magical Idols Luminous Witches) television anime's main cast:
Humikane Shimada and Projekt Kagonish are credited with the original work of Strike Witches: Road to Berlin. Shimada is also credited with the original character designs. Kazuhiro Takamura is returning to direct the series at David Production, and is also adapting Shimada's character designs for animation. Striker Unit is handling the series composition, and Tatsuhiko Urata (Strike Witches and Strike Witches 2 scriptwriter) is credited as the chief writer.
Additional staff members include:
- Writers: Takashi Aoshima, Toshihiko Tsukiji
- World-Building Setting, Military Research: Takaaki Suzuki
- Series Literature: Shinya Murakami
- Neuroi Design: Naohiro Washio
- Music: Seikou Nagaoka
- Music Production: Nippon Columbia
- Sound Director: Tomohiro Yoshida
- Sound Effects: Mutsuhiro Nishimura
- Sound Production: Magic Capsule
- Producer: Takashi Tachizaki
The anime will star:
- Misato Fukuen as Yoshika Miyafuji
- Saori Seto as Mio Sakamoto
- Kaori Nazuka as Lynette Bishop
- Miyuki Sawashiro as Perrine-H. Clostermann
- Rie Tanaka as Minna-Dietlinde Wilcke
- Mie Sonozaki as Gertrud Barkhorn
- Sakura Nogawa as Erica Hartmann
- Chiwa Saito as Francesca Lucchini
- Ami Koshimizu as Charlotte E Yeager
- Mai Kadowaki as Sanya V. Litvyak
- Ayuru Ōhashi as Eila Ilmatar Juutilainen
The separate Renmei Kūgun Kōkū Mahō Ongakutai Luminous Witches anime will premiere in 2021. It will star:
- Sayaka Tsuzuki as Eleonore Giovanna Gassion (third from left in image above)
- Ami Aimoto as Lyudmila Andreyevna Rouslanova (fourth from left)
- Mai Narumi as Virginia Robertson (fifth from left)
- Minako Hosogawa as Inori Shibuya (fourth from right)
- Ryō Mamiya as Aira Payvikki Linnamar (third from right)
- Kyō Tachibana as Joanna Elizabeth Stafford (far left)
- Miu Kotosaka as Sylvie Cariello (second from left)
- Momo Hanae as Maria Magadalene Dietrich (second from right)
- Misaki Yuki as Manaia Matawhaura Hato (far right)
The story centers on a unique squadron of "witches who don't fight." Instead, the squadron sing and perform music to protect the smiles of those who have been driven out of their hometowns by the Neuroi.
Humikane Shimada drew the character designs for the new Witches. Shimada and Projekt World Witches are credited with the original work. Shouji Saeki (episode director and scriptwriter for Strike Witches and Strike Witches 2) directing the anime and handling the series composition. Shinya Murakami is credited for the "Witches series literature." Kadokawa is producing the music.
The anime's main cast formed an idol unit last year, and the first CD single, "Flying Skyhigh," will ship on May 27.
The overall franchise's story centers on an alien invasion by beings known as the Neuroi. The only way to damage and ultimately defeat them lies in Witches, girls who possess magical powers and are capable of wielding Striker Units that enhance their abilities and allow them to maneuver in the air. The characters in the franchise are often based on real-life aerial aces from various nationalities.
The series is based on illustrator Humikane Shimada's mecha-girl illustrations, and Shimada is credited as the original creator and character designer for the franchise. The mixed-media franchise began with a manga in 2005, and a light novel series in 2006, both of which focus on different characters from the eventual Strike Witches anime. The anime premiered in 2008, and it spawned a sequel, a film, and an OVA series. The franchise also spawned the Brave Witches anime in October 2016, as well as numerous spinoff manga, novels, and games.
The Strike Witches: 501st JOINT FIGHTER WING Take Off! (Strike Witches 501 Butai Hasshinshimasu!) TV and online anime series premiered on April 9, and a 30-minute film opened in Japan on October 4. <!–The Strike Witches: Road to Berlin TV anime will premiere in 2020.–>