The series was adapted into a 70-episode anime television series by Madhouse that aired on Japan’s satellite television channel NHK BS2 from April 1998 to March 2000. Additional media produced include two anime films, as well as video games, art books, picture books, and film comics. An anime television series adaptation of Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card Edition has been announced for January 2018. Tokyopop initially released the manga in English in North America from March 2000 to August 2003. After Tokyopop’s license for Cardcaptor Sakura expired, Dark Horse Manga acquired the license and released the series in omnibus editions from October 2010 to September 2012.
Nelvana licensed the TV series and first film for North American broadcast and distribution, renaming it Cardcaptors, which first aired on Kids’ WB from June 2000 to December 2001. All 70 episodes were dubbed; while other English-speaking territories received the full run, the version aired on American television was heavily edited into 39 episodes. Cardcaptors also aired on Cartoon Network, Teletoon and Nickelodeon. The TV series and films were sub-licensed by Geneon, which released them unedited with English subtitles. The TV series was also later released by Madman Entertainment in Australia and New Zealand.
Critics praised the manga for its creativity and described it as a quintessential shōjo manga, as well as a critical work for manga in general. The manga series was awarded the Seiun Award for Best Manga in 2001. The anime television series was praised for transcending its target audience of young children and being enjoyable to older viewers. The artwork in the anime was also a focus of attention, described as above average for a late-1990s TV series, and Sakura’s magic-casting scenes were complimented for being nearly unique because of the regular costume changes. The anime television series won the Animage Grand Prix award for Best Anime in 1999. The American edit of Cardcaptors, however, was heavily panned by critics for cutting out character backgrounds essential to understanding the plot.
An anime television series adaptation of the Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card Edition sequel manga has been announced for January 2018, with Asaka, Ohkawa and Madhouse returning from the original anime series to direct, write and produce the new adaptation, respectively. The main cast from the original anime also returns to reprise their roles.
Madhouse produced two, 82-minute anime films as an extension to the anime television series series. The first, Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie, was released on August 21, 1999. Set between the first and second seasons of the TV series, the film shows Sakura and her friends going to Hong Kong where they encounter a vengeful spirit who was hurt by Clow Reed in the past. It was released to VHS, LD and DVD in Japan by Bandai Visual in February 2000. Nelvana released an English dubbed version of the film, retaining the same name and story changes as its main Cardcaptors dub, although it was dubbed with no visual edits and was released in cut and uncut versions. As with the TV series, Pioneer Entertainment also released the film with the original Japanese audio and English subtitles, and also released a bilingual DVD containing both audio tracks. Both the edited and unedited versions were released on VHS and DVD in March 2002. Discotek Media released the first film on Blu-ray Disc and DVD on September 30, 2014 in North America.
The second film, Cardcaptor Sakura Movie 2: The Sealed Card, was released in Japan on July 15, 2000. It provided a conclusion to the TV series, in which Syaoran returns to Tokyo in hopes of getting Sakura’s answer to his love confession, but her own confession is interrupted by the appearance of a 53rd Clow Card. It was released to LD (as a limited edition) and DVD in January 2001, and to VHS in July 2001. It was released in North America to DVD by Pioneer in November 2003 and featured an English dub by Bang Zoom! Entertainment instead of Nelvana and Ocean Studios, now with Kari Wahlgren as Sakura, and this time retaining the original character names and the content unedited and uncut. The films as released by Pioneer (later renamed Geneon) remained in print in North America until late 2007. A bonus short film titled Leave it to Kero! was played with the theatrical screening of the second film.