During Sword Art Online -Full Dive-, the event celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Sword Art Online anime franchise, it was announced that the franchise is launching a "brand new original film project." The announcement was made via a brief teaser which you can watch below.
We don't know if the new project will be animated and very few specifics were offered. The teaser did mention that more details will be unveiled at a later time.
This will mark the fourth Sword Art Online movie. The first animated film, Sword Art Online The Movie: Ordinal Scale, was released back in 2017. It featured an original story by creator Reki Kawahara set after the events of Sword Art Online II.
The second two movies were adaptations of the popular Sword Art Online: Progressive novels. The first movie, Sword Art Online Progressive: Aria of a Starless Night, premiered in 2021. After being delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the sequel Sword Art Online Progressive: Scherzo of a Dark Dusk recently premiered in Japan on October 22, 2022. The staff and cast from the first film reprised their roles for the sequel.
Sword Art Online takes place in the then-near-future and follows protagonists Kazuto "Kirito" Kirigaya and Asuna Yuuki as they become trapped within a virtual world with 10,000 other games. Their only hope for escape is to successfully complete all of the floors, but death in the game means death in real life.
The Sword Art Online Progressive novels are a spin-off written by Reki Kawahara. A floor-by-floor reboot of the Sword Art Online novels, the story is told from Asuna's point of view as she clears all 100 floors of the immersive MMORPG world of Aincrad.
The franchise has received worldwide commercial success with over 30 million copies of the light novels sold worldwide. The novels have sparked various spin-offs and adaptations from the anime series to multiple movies and video games. In addition to this new film project, Netflix is currently producing a live-action series.
As always, we'll be sure to share any more information we learn about this newly announced film project.