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Final Fantasy's Yoshitaka Amano Directs 1st Film, Zan

posted on 2010-04-09 20:41 EDT
Gatchaman, Casshan designer launches his own studio for 3D anime film

Yoshitaka Amano, the artist famous for designing the characters in the Science Ninja Team Gatchaman anime franchise and the Final Fantasy game series, is directing his first anime film called Zan for worldwide release next year. To that end, he established his own production studio, Studio Deva Loka, which he is personally heading.

The story of the 3D film begins at the end of the 19th century, when a samurai named Zan is led to a world in an alternate dimension to battle evil. In addition to directing for the first time, Amano conceived the story and drafted the original art.

Last month, Amano hosted an unmanned exhibit space at Tokyo International Anime Fair 2010. The space only contained two white walls adorned with the name "ZAN," and a huge black feline statue twice as big as an average person. He displayed the statue, with a similar lack of explanation or context, at the Opéra de Paris (Palais Garnier) in France last fall. The statue depicts the steel beast named Panther that becomes Zan's partner in the film.

Amano coined the name "Studio Deva Loka" from a phrase that means "the place where gods assemble." The studio plans to announce more projects that it will produce after Zan. Amano has been displaying art as part of a Deva Loka exhibition in Berlin, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

Amano has been in the anime industry since he was 15, when he joined the veteran studio Tatsunoko Production. Among his first character design credits at Tatsunoko were Time Bokan, Hutch, the Honeybee, and Shinzō Ningen Casshan. After he became a freelancer, he contributed visual conceptual art to the first of many Final Fantasy games from Square (later Square Enix). He also created Yasai no Yousei - N.Y. Salad, a television anime about the secret nocturnal life of vegetables in a New York kitchen, and that series inspired a 3D film this spring.

Source: Sport Hochi


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