Meet “Little Witch Academia,” the Internet’s next favorite anime
It’s been mere days since Kyoto Animation announced that the Swimming Anime, the 30-second promo spot that unexpectedly spawned an enormous Tumblr fandom, was becoming a real show. Now Kotaku is musing that anime fans might have another fandom-turned-product on their hands—with Little Witch Academia, a half-hour anime concept episode that already has developed characters and a storyline… but no series.
In the age of Kickstarter and crowd-sourced creativity, the idea of trying to launch a fandom for a series before the series itself is underway isn’t so far-fetched; but as with Free!—the “swimming anime”—the creators of Little Witch Academia didn’t intend it to be a real series. Instead the half-hour short was produced as part of Anime Mirai, an annual animator training project. The parent studio, Studio Trigger, uploaded the episode to YouTube on April 19th. Since then, it’s been viewed 400,000 times, and anime fans appear to be dying for more. It even has its own TV Tropes page, with a whopping list of anime tropes for a single 26-minute short.