Classic Anime ‘Robotech’ Joins Funimation


Anime is a hot commodity now, and several streaming services are bolstering their catalogs with series new and old. The classic Robotech series is joining “the Funimation family,” courtesy of distributor Kew Media Distribution.

Here’s the official press release…


Leading global distributor Kew Media Distribution has licensed the highly successful original anime sensation Robotech: The Series and the sequel films Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles and Robotech 2: The Sentinels to Funimation, the global leader in sub and dub anime content and a subsidiary of Sony Pictures Television. Upon expiration of existing third-party deals, this expansive agreement gives Funimation all rights (including VOD, EST, home entertainment and merchandising) worldwide, excluding Japan, to over 45 hours of the cutting-edge CGI anime.

Produced by Harmony Gold and Tatsunoko Production, the action adventure animated series Robotech introduced an entire generation of viewers to anime when it first premiered in 1985 and to this day, has a thriving and extensive fan base around the globe.

Separately, the Sony Pictures Entertainment Motion Pictures Group is currently developing the eagerly anticipated Robotech live action feature film.

Robotech: The Series starts as the human race finds itself on the brink of annihilation under attack by a fleet of gigantic alien warships capable of destroying an entire planet in a split second. The only hope for survival lies with the secrets of Robotech, an advanced alien technology which has given humans access to powerful robotic systems and interstellar spacecraft.


Produced in high definition 5:1 with digital surround sound, Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles film sequel picks up the story many years later with vibrant anime characters voiced by Mark Hamill (Star Wars) and Chase Masterson (Star Trek: Deep Space 9).  

Based on the popular series, Robotech 2: The Sentinels is the enthralling film sequel, where two cultures, the citizens of Earth and the planet Optera, come together to determine the fate of their two worlds in a compelling story of love, courage and the pursuit of freedom.

Jonathan Ford, EVP Sales of Kew Media Distribution comments, “Funimation is the ‘go-to’ destination for sub and dub and we are very pleased to have licensed Robotech to this global anime powerhouse where it will join the very best series in the genre. We know this highly-regarded and incredibly popular cult animation series will excite and delight Robotech fans around the globe.”

Colin Decker, General Manager of Funimation, also commented. “Robotech is a beloved and foundational series for fans around the world. We are so proud and excited to connect this iconic series with millions more fans through Funimation.” 

What are your thoughts on this? Some Macross fans were a little salty that Harmony Gold has retained to the rights to Macross for years to come. In fact, we had Harmony Gold’s Kevin McKeever on a Robotech Q&A livestream immediately after that controversial announcement at this year’s Anime Expo.

It seems like Funimation gets access to all of Robotech, including home video (blu-ray?) and it will eventually wind up on the Funimation streaming service.

Comment below and let us know!

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  1. There’s almost no way the Blu rays of Robotech: The Macross Saga will look as good in hi-def as the remastered SDF Macross Blu rays in Japan do.
    The SDF Macross film reels Harmony Gold has access to are at least second-generation dupes on 16mm and they’re 35 years old. That’s what they used to create the masters for the original broadcast tapes of Robotech and the Robotech: Extended (remaster) that most people didn’t like because of the foley effects layered on top of the original soundtrack.
    It’s a safe bet the owners of Macross are NOT going to give Funimation or whoever does the next Robotech release the master tapes used to create the Blu ray set for Macross that was released in Japan on the 30th anniversary of Macross.
    I do think there will be another physical media release of Robotech in the near-future. Hopefully, it gets expedited. It’s been out of print for far too long. I just hope they can do a decent job of remastering Macross in HD with the source materials they do have.

    The last 2/3 of Robotech should be fine. Tatsunoko owns those two series (Mospeada and Southern Crosss) outright and Mospeada has already been mastered for Blu ray in Japan. I kind of hope they re-release those series unedited on home video as well. Mospeada really is worth getting on Blu ray. Southern Cross is actually better than the edited version that appeared as the middle act of Robotech…

    • Fun fact — The Shadow Chronicles movie is the only part of Robotech that’s been produced in Hi-Def so far. I have the long out of print Blu ray for it, too.

      They’ll have to remaster the rest of it in HD if they want to produce Blu rays of classic Robotech.
      The story is Harmony Gold doesn’t want to pay for the remaster. My guess is the cash for this will come from Sony ultimately since Sony owns Funimation AND is producing the live-action Robotech film if they ever produce a filmable script AND nail down a budget that doesn’t bankrupt Sony Pictures.


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