Toei To Launch Tokusatsu Streaming Service In The US This October
The good news: Toei Japan is launching a 24-hour paid subscription Internet channel devoted to streaming its iconic shows, including tokusatsu series that potentially include Kamen Rider, Super Sentai and more in the United States next month. The less good news: It could take as long as a year before programming will feature English subtitles.
The channel's launch is part of a Japanese government and business-helmed "Cool Japan" initiative, which boosts Japan as a tourism spot and also a nation with a lot of culture and entertainment to offer. While the channel will eventually expand to offer subtitles for viewers who don't speak Japanese, its initial launch is meant to cater to the estimated 400,000 Japanese citizens living in the US - basically giving them a way to follow all their favorite content from back home.
"Because of the current interest in ‘Cool Japan’ we saw an opportunity to show off our tokusatsu hero shows. In the future we'd even like to provide these series almost as they air in Japan," Yasuhiko Nakashima of Toei's International Sales Division said in a press release.
A lot is currently unknown about the channel. There's no URL or other portal information provided and the scheduled release date of October isn't all that precise. Given that Toei licenses a lot of its tokusatsu and anime series -- most notably Super Sentai to Saban for Power Rangers shows -- content also remains a mystery until Toei spills all the beans. For now, though, fans who may or may not want to rely on less than official methods of watching classic and contemporary tokusatsu from the company can at least count on some form of content in the not-too-distant future.