Netflix’s Cowboy Bebop takes the opportunity to make a number of changes for its anime source material, but perhaps there is no character that was changed more from the original series than Julia, the love of Spike’s life who finds herself in a very different place in the live-action adaptation. With the original television show refraining from diving heavily into Julia’s back story, the new series takes a different route and instead looks heavily into her past while also creating a new set-up for her future that will mean more change to the live-action series from the original.
In the live-action series, Julia is played by Elena Satine and is actually married to Vicious, which of course never took place in the anime series. Here, she is assisting Vicious with his plan on overtaking the Red Dragon syndicate, though she isn’t a part of the criminal enterprise herself as she was in the first series. Julia’s dangerous personality remained in this new take on the classic anime franchise, as she wasn’t scared of getting her hands dirty, though the actions she takes in the live-action series diverge greatly.
The biggest change of course comes from the season one finale of Netflix‘s Cowboy Bebop, which sees Julia attempting to take the reins of the Syndicate from Vicious, by locking him in a basement and informing the white-haired swordsman that she will run the organization herself, pretending that he is pulling the strings. On top of this mind-blowing fact, Julia is also the one to push Spike out of the window of the chapel, which remains one of the most legendary moments from the anime. Needless to say, Julia taking on the role of a villain in the live-action series is a major departure and leaves us wondering how the series will continue to change should it come back for a season two.
In our interview with actress Elena Satine, she broke down her character, which is greatly different from the source material:
“Well with Julia, she’s this “Dream Girl” character. She’s very ethereal and kind of an idea and not a person. I don’t think any actress wants to play a one-dimensional character, so it was nice having discussions with the creative team to unpack who this character was underneath the perception, giving her a wonderful arc.”