Long-running shounen series Fairy Tail has endured an arduous 2015 in the UK - after finally getting the upgrade to Blu-ray it was stripped back to DVD-only releases in the wake of murmurings of less than stellar sales of the series in its HD format (less than 10% of the DVD equivalent's sales, we hear), and now a suggestion has been made that we've seen the end of distributor Manga Entertainment handling the home video release of the series in the UK.
In a response to a Facebook query regarding the series on the distributor's official page, Jerome Mazandarani responded as follows:
"I don't believe we will be offered any more Fairy Tail for UK by the UK rights holder, FUNimation. Speak to Anime Limited. They are announcing a lot of FUNimation stuff at the moment like Ping Pong and Gangsta. That's why we have no new Fairy Tail news for you."
This comment certainly suggests that we won't be seeing more Fairy Tail from Manga Entertainment any time soon, although this is offset by an increasing likelihood that the series will continue elsewhere - all eyes will doubtless be on Anime Limited to confirm or deny any plans they might have for the franchise.
The comment also raises a further, and perhaps more interesting, question as to the current status of Manga Entertainment's sub-licensing deal with FUNimation Entertainment, which has traditionally allowed the distributor "first dibs" on titles. Are the titles cited by Mr. Mazandarani simply exceptions that prove the rule, or a suggestion that FUNimation titles are now more likely to find homes away from Manga Entertainment? It's a possibility that we'll be keeping a close eye on, that's for sure.
EDIT: In a further comment on this own personal Twitter account, Jerome Mazandarani has stated that he doesn't believe that Manga Entertainment will be handling "any other FUNimation Entertainment titles apart from Evangelion 3.33".