Skydance Television, an independent production company based in the United States, announced on Tuesday that it has acquired the licensing rights to Sword Art Online from Kadokawa. The rights cover a global scale and are not restricted to just the United States. The show is looking to be fast-tracked into launching. Laeta Kalognidis is writing the script for the show. Kalognidis is known for other works such as Avatar and Termintor Genisys. He will share Executive Producer rights alongside David Ellison, Dana Goldberg and Marcy Ross, all of which are a part of Skydance Television.
Skydance Interactive is also planning a virtual reality experience of Sword Art Online as well. The VR experience will be modeled after the television series and not Reki Kawahara’s light novels, nor the anime adaptation.
There is no word on who is being cast for the show as of yet.
MyAnimeList describes the story of Sword Art Online as follows:
In the year 2022, virtual reality has progressed by leaps and bounds, and a massive online role-playing game called Sword Art Online (SAO) is launched. With the aid of “NerveGear” technology, players can control their avatars within the game using nothing but their own thoughts.
Kazuto Kirigaya, nicknamed “Kirito,” is among the lucky few enthusiasts who get their hands on the first shipment of the game. He logs in to find himself, with ten-thousand others, in the scenic and elaborate world of Aincrad, one full of fantastic medieval weapons and gruesome monsters. However, in a cruel turn of events, the players soon realize they cannot log out; the game’s creator has trapped them in his new world until they complete all one hundred levels of the game.
In order to escape Aincrad, Kirito will now have to interact and cooperate with his fellow players. Some are allies, while others are foes, like Asuna Yuuki, who commands the leading group attempting to escape from the ruthless game. To make matters worse, Sword Art Online is not all fun and games: if they die in Aincrad, they die in real life. Kirito must adapt to his new reality, fight for his survival, and hopefully break free from his virtual hell.
Sword Art Online is currently licensed by Yen Press for manga and light novel distribution in North America. Aniplex of America holds the license for anime distribution.