Funimation announced on Wednesday that the Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood anime and the first two seasons of the Black Butler anime will return to its streaming service on Wednesday. Both shows will be available in English and in Japanese with English subtitles. Funimation noted that more content from Aniplex is “coming soon” to its service.
Funimation’s home video and streaming rights for the 2009 Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood series and the Fullmetal Alchemist: The Movie – Conqueror of Shamballa film expired in March 2016. The company’s rights for the 2003 Fullmetal Alchemist series expired in July 2016.
Funimation released Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood on five DVD and Blu-ray Disc releases from 2010 to 2011, and re-released the series in a two-part collection on DVD and Blu-ray Disc in 2012. Similar to the 2003 Fullmetal Alchemist anime, the 2009 Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood anime is based on Hiromu Arakawa’s original manga, though the latter hews closer to the manga’s story and ending.
Funimation’s license for the first Black Butler series expired in May 2017, and its license for Black Butler II expired in June 2018.
The Black Butler anime adapts Yana Toboso’s manga of the same name. The series premiered in Japan in 2008, and Black Butler II followed in 2010. Funimation has released all three television anime, the Black Butler II OVA project, the Black Butler: Book of Murder OVA, and the Black Butler: Book of the Atlantic anime film on home video.
Sony Pictures Television Aniplex are consolidating three Sony-owned anime acquisition and distribution companies — Funimation based in the United States, Wakanim based in France, and Madman Anime Group based in Australia — into one joint venture. Before the consolidation, Funimation was under Sony Pictures Television, while the other two companies were under Sony Music Entertainment Japan’s Aniplex.