For the first time since announcing that he has been removed from the Kemono Friends anime project, director Tatsuki finally returns to twitter. His removal as director sparked a firestorm of criticism from fans and anime industry personalities alike, and this includes his removal trending on twitter worldwide, as well as fans launching an online petition, and a fan shaving his head in protest. In his first tweet in two weeks, Tatsuki posted:

The director said that all three members of Irodori, which comprises of Tatsuki, Yuuko Tiromizu (art director) and Yoshihisa Isa (animation director) are all “alive and well”. He then thanked everyone who showed support, and that the Kemono Friends fans have encouraged him through this. Tatsuki then stated that he still wants to continue creating anime, as he did when working on Kemono Friends.

While Yaoyorozu produced the animation for Kemono Friends, the trio served as its backbone, and it was revealed that all three were removed from the project.

Kadokawa, via the official website for the Kemono Friends anime, previously released an official statement regarding Tatsuki’s removal from the project. They revealed that there was miscommunication between parties involved and that was why he was removed. Kadokawa Dwango’s president, even chimed in and said he was very concerned about the situation, though admitted he doesn’t know what is entirely happening himself.

Because Kemono Friends is 2017’s anime darling, the magical place known as the internet didn’t let this pass by. Fans outside of Japan quickly jumped to social media and internet forums such as Reddit and 4chan isn’t “Tanoshi” at all, in reference to one of the characters’ catchphrases. Its unofficial English hashtag is even #NotatsukinoTanoshi. Fans even started an online petition via addressed to Kadokawa and asked them to bring Tatsuki back at the helm of the Kemono Friends anime project.

Needless to say, Kadokawa is receiving plenty of backlash for the director’s apparent firing. And the fact that his firing also trended #1 on twitter worldwide and overshadowing the big A Certain Magical Index Season 3 leak doesn’t quite help at all.

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