Kyoto Animation’s upcoming two-part Free! The Final Stroke movie has received a new trailer, along with a new key visual and more staff details. The first part is set to release on September 17, while the second part will release on April 22, 2022.
The movie’s staff includes Eisaku Kawanami (Free! -Dive to the Future-) as story composer and scriptwriter, Masahiro Yokotani (Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World Season 2) as co-scriptwriter, the late Futoshi Nishiya (Free! -Dive to the Future-, Liz and the Blue Bird) as character designer, and Kōhei Okamura (Free! -Dive to the Future- assistant chief animation director) and Miku Kadowaki (Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid S character designer) as chief animation directors.
Other newly revealed staff include Shingo Kasai (Free! -Dive to the Future-) as art director, Yuka Yoneda (Violet Evergarden: The Movie) as color designer, Kazuya Takaoka (Free! -Dive to the Future-) as photography director, and Tatsuya Katō (Shōjo☆Kageki Revue Starlight movie) as music composer. Kawanami was previously announced as the director.
Meanwhile, the cast of Free! The Final Stroke includes returning cast members Nobunaga Shimazaki as Haruka Nanase, Tatsuhisa Suzuki as Makoto Tachibana, Mamoru Miyano as Rin Matsuoka, and Kōki Uchiyama as Ikuya Kirishima.
The Free! anime franchise, which is loosely based on the light novels by Kōji Ōji, began in 2013 and includes three TV series and multiple films. KyoAni’s Osaka branch Animation Do, which merged with its parent company in 2020, had a prominent role in the production of most of the Free! instalments.
Free! The Final Stroke was originally meant to release in summer 2020, but was delayed following the KyoAni arson attack in July 2019.
Crunchyroll describes Free!‘s first season as:
Nanase Haruka loved to be in the water – loved swimming. In elementary school, Nanase Haruka, Tachibana Makoto, Matsuoka Rin, and Hazuki Nagisa attended the same swimming class together. Time passed, and as Haruka was living an uneventful high school life, he suddenly encountered Rin again. Rin challenged Haruka to a race and showed him how much stronger he had become. Soon enough, Makoto and Nagisa also rejoined the group, and along with a new classmate, Ryugazaki Rei, they established the Iwatobi High School Swimming Club.
Sources: KyoaniChannel, Free! The Final Stroke website