Sunday, February 28, 2010

Mysterious Japanese Animation Revealed

So the other day, scouring the Internet to find answers to my questions about Japanese animation, I came across some interesting articles online. Many animation fans as you may know, here in the US, love to watch anime. If those fans are in the pre-teen, teenage, or young adult demographic they may prefer Anime over the current fare of US animation on networks because it covers more diverse subject matter and isn't heavily skewed toward being "family" friendly. (I think you may know what I mean). So I know the current state of US television/ feature animation from working in the animation industry and talking with friends at various studios, but I was curious to learn more about the state of the Japanese animation industry. Here in the US, it is hard not to find an Anime section in most entertainment retailers (or large manga section in most US book retailers) one can get the sense that the Japanes Anime/ Manga industry is making tons of $$$ here in the US compared to our own native struggling animation industry. So you may find it interesting to read this article from 2003 which gives you a glimpse of the Japanese Animation industry from the inside by a US animator working in Japan. (Caveat: It's not as forthcoming with details as you might expect. However it does provide some useful info tidbits and links) http://www.animatorsunite.com/data/blogs/an-american-animator-in-japan/ And then compare that to this article discussing the "future" of the japanese animation industry from this past year. http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20090304f1.html So have things changed all that much for the Japanese animation industry in the past 6 years? I think the past two years of financial turmoil in the US and this past years global economic crisis/ recession has taken a toll on Japanese Anime sales world wide. It seems that animation companies in Japan are facing the same economic realities with which US companies struggle. The articles puts some of my questions to rest but I still have more about the Mysterious Japanese Animation process.

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