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The History Of Funimation, And How They Came To Be

Looking to binge-watch your old faves or discover some new anime?

There are a few streaming providers you should spend a lot of time getting to know.

Among them is Funimation.


The history of Funimation:

funimation old school

Before making the inevitable transition into streaming, the company had already been there for a while. It was partially to blame for the comeback of anime in the US in the mid-1990s.

But you may already be familiar with Funimation if you consider yourself a fan of the genre.

The streaming service provides amazing fan experiences across TV, movies, mangas, events, collectables, and the Funimation App by offering hundreds of titles and more than 15,000 hours of anime content.

Anime entertainment may be more well-liked than ever, with live-action versions of “Cowboy Beebop” and “Avatar: The Last Airbender” in the process.

This article will discuss everything you need to know about Funimation!


Gen Fukunaga

YouTube video

Gen Fukunaga and his wife Cindy Brennan established Funimation Productions in Silicon Valley in May 1994 with funding from Daniel Cocanougher and his family. The company later moved to North Richland Hills, Flower Mound, Texas, and Coppell, Texas.

Funimation was one of North America’s top distributors of anime and other foreign entertainment properties.

Among many others, it licensed well-known series like Dragon Ball, One Piece, Yu Yu Hakusho, My Hero Academia, Attack on Titan, Fairy Tail, Black Clover, Fruits Basket, and Tokyo Ghoul.

Early in December 2020, Sony said that its Funimation anime division would pay $1.175 billion to AT&T to acquire Crunchyroll, the company’s primary streaming competitor.

August 2021 saw the approval and completion of the agreement. Even while there are no explicit intentions to shut down Funimation completely, the content has been gradually shifting to Crunchyroll, which makes Funimation much less desirable.7

Crunchyroll will likely remain independent after the current licensing agreement expires, but it may take some time.


Pre-Sony transition in 2022 and beyond

Funimation is engaged in the distribution of several anime shows. The company was also a leader in the anime dubbing industry. Much of its exclusive content is promptly dubbed into English.

Fans of anime will always remember Funimation as the organization that, in the 1990s, revived interest in anime by bringing the dubbed version of Dragon Ball Z to the Cartoon Network.

It’s hardly surprising that Funimation eventually switched to online video streaming, given today’s entertainment industry’s status.

You can also purchase a ton of merchandise from the website, including DVD and Blu-ray box sets, action figures, and T-shirts.


Merging with Crunchyroll

funimation crunchyroll merger

Funimation has merged with Crunchyroll.

The two anime streaming platforms are now referred to as “Crunchyroll.” New series will be added to the service as a result, and there will also be a discount for current Funimation subscribers. The cost does not alter, though.

How did it come to this?

Crunchyroll was acquired by Sony Pictures Entertainment from WarnerMedia for a total of US$1.175 billion in cash on December 9, 2020, and was then included under Funimation.

On March 24, 2021, it was revealed that the US Department of Justice continued examining the deal for antitrust violations.

On August 9, 2021, Sony fully acquired Crunchyroll, who promised via a press release that they would combine their anime businesses to offer a single anime subscription service as soon as possible.

Crunchyroll confirmed four days later that VRV was included in the deal.

On March 1, 2022, it was revealed that Crunchyroll would combine the Funimation, Wakanim, and VRV SVOD services.

Fourteen days later, it was revealed that Funimation’s home video releases would be distributed under the Crunchyroll banner and that the latter’s logo would replace that of the former on the spine and back of the covers for each new release starting with its June 2022 slate.

Additionally, it was announced that Funimation Global Group, LLC would undergo a rebrand as Crunchyroll, LLC.

On April 5, 2022, the business declared that Funimation’s YouTube channel will now go by the name Crunchyroll Dubs and function as Crunchyroll’s channel for English-dubbed content, with English-subtitled material continuing to be uploaded on their Crunchyroll Collection channel.

Additionally, the business said that beginning on April 9, 2022, they would air an English-dubbed premiere episode of an anime series on the channel every Saturday at 3:00pm ET.

A second announcement regarding the transfer of the Funimation Shop to the Crunchyroll Store was issued three days later.

As a result of the merger in March 2022, pre-existing shows such as My Hero Academia, Uzaki-chan Wants to Hang Out! Until a complete migration of its licensed library is carried over to Crunchyroll, it will continue to be streamed on Funimation along with new seasons.

Although the dubbing production for new series like Spy Family, Chainsaw Man, and A Couple of Cuckoos was done in Coppell studios, these shows are only available on Crunchyroll. The Funimation OTT platform is anticipated to retire after the content migration.

So, Funimation will be gone soon.


What does Funimation/Crunchyroll still offer?

funimation shop

The site offers a vast library of anime that you can stream without being interrupted by ads. The cheapest option is the Premium Plan, which starts at just $5.99 a month (or $59.99 a year) after a free two-week trial.

The Premium Plan offers two simultaneous streams, simulcast directly from Japan, new episodes dubbed within two weeks of the Japan broadcast, and ad-free access to the Funimation archive.

If you want to upgrade, choose the Premium Plus plan, which costs $7.99 a month (or $79.99 a year) and includes everything in the lower tier in addition to five simultaneous streams.

Plus the option to download shows and watch them offline on iOS and Android devices, special events open only to members, early access to Funimation sales, free shipping on purchases over $20, and member-only deals.

A Premium Plus Ultra Plan that covers everything in the Premium and Premium Plus plan and an annual anniversary gift is also available for $99.99 a year.

A 14-day free trial is offered for each package.

Subscribers can stream various Anime like Attack On Titan, Dragon Ball Super, Detective Conan, Hunter x Hunter, Vivy, and many other titles.

Additionally, Funimation sells a variety of anime action toys, clothing, and Funko Pop! figures. Many cool artefacts, including figurines, coffee mugs, and glasses, would make wonderful gifts (even if you were buying them for yourself).

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