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Report: Netflix to Add Low-Cost Streaming Tier With Ads by Year's End

Service also planning to "crack down" on password sharing The New York Times newspaper reported on Tuesday that Netflix may introduce its lower cost, ad-supported subscription tier between October to December later this year, citing an internal company memo. In addition, the memo also mentioned that the service is planning to "crack down" on password sharing between subscribers in the same time per...
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Gundam Franchise's Annual Sales Top 100 Billion Yen for 1st Time

Franchise now earns more than 10% of Bandai Namco Holdings' sales ― Bandai Namco Holdings reported on Wednesday that the Mobile Suit Gundam franchise earned 101.7 billion yen (about US$783 million) across the entire holding group's subsidiaries in the fiscal year ending in March 2022. This marks the first time the franchise has earned more than 100 billion yen (about US$770 million) in one fiscal yea...
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Manga's Growth In Popularity Is Here To Stay, Industry Leaders Predict

The momentum behind the likes of Jujutsu Kaisen, Chainsaw Man, and Demon Slayer continues to outpace domestic comics. ― It has been over two years since My Hero Academia landed a spot as the first manga to crack the top three in the New York Time's best-selling graphic books list. Since then, manga has continued holding its place among the top of the list – with My Hero Academia, Jujutsu Kaisen, and ...

Nintendo Switch Console Crosses 107.65 Million Units in Sales

Mario Kart 8 Deluxe game has sold 45.33 million units, Animal Crossing: New Horizons game 38.64 million units ― Nintendo's latest earnings release for fiscal year 2021 (April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022) on Tuesday announced the company's Nintendo Switch console has sold 107.65 million units worldwide as of March 31. This number includes sales for the Nintendo Switch, Lite, and OLED consoles. The conso...

PlayStation 5 Console Has Shipped 19.3 Million Units Worldwide

Previous-gen PS4 has shipped 117.2 million units ― Sony revealed on Tuesday in its financial results presentation for the fiscal year 2021 (April 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022) that it has shipped a total of 19.3 million units of its PlayStation 5 console worldwide, with 2 million of those units shipping in the final quarter of the fiscal year. This represents 1.3 million fewer units shipped over the sam...
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Shin-Ei Animation Opens New Studio in Kobe

Studio is hiring, plans to begin operations in Kobe studio in September ― Animation studio Shin-Ei Animation announced on Monday that it will establish a new studio in Kobe City that will begin operations in September. The company is currently recruiting animators and production managers for the new studio. Shin-Ei Animation Kobe Studio will be the company's first branch outside Tokyo. Shin-Ei Animat...
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CG Animation Company Sublimation Establishes New Studio in Sendai

Company's 4th studio opens on May 9 ― CG animation studio Sublimation (Shikizakura, Dragon's Dogma) is establishing a new studio in Sendai in Miyagi prefecture that will open on May 9. The new studio will specialize in modeling. It will start with three employees, but the company hopes to expand to 15 employees in five years. This will be the fourth studio, after the head office in Kunitachi, Tokyo, ...

Embracer Group to Acquire Eidos-Montéal, Crystal Dynamics, Square Enix Montéal from Square Enix

Embracer to acquire IPs such as Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, Thief, Legacy of Kain ― Embracer Group AB announced on Monday it has entered into an agreement to acquire game development studios Crystal Dynamics, Eidos-Montréal, and Square Enix Montréal from Square Enix Holdings Co., Ltd. The three studios have a combined total of around 1,100 employees. The agreement also includes acquiring a catalog of IPs s...
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Bandai Spirits to Build New Hobby Center Factory

Company seeks to acqure 14,895 square meter space for planned 2024 factory launch ― Bandai Namco Holdings' toy and hobby subsidiary Bandai Spirits announced plans on Thursday to build a new Bandai Hobby Center factory, with the company planning to acquire 4,506 tsubo (approximately 14,895 square meters) of land, and a planned production launch in 2024. The company is planning to prioritize workplace ...

Super Mario Bros. Film Delayed to April 2023 Globally

Film now opens on April 7 in N. America, April 28 in Japan Super Mario Bros. creator Shigeru Miyamoto announced on Nintendo of America's official Twitter account on Monday that Nintendo and Illumination have delayed the global opening of their Super Mario Bros. animated film to spring 2023. Specifically, the film will now open on April 7 in North America and April 28 in Japan. Illumination also ann...
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Toei Animation Establishes Animator Training Program

Program starts in April 2023 ― Toei Animation announced on Wednesday that it is establishing "Toei Animation Sakuga Academy," an animator training program, in April 2023. It is a one-year, short-term intensive, and practical animator training program in which experienced animators guide up-and-coming trainees. Following the training and an examination, successful students will be hired as contract wo...

Nintendo of America Responds After Worker Files Labor Complaint

Anonymous employee accused Nintendo of concerted activities, coercive actions, discharge, surveillance ― Nintendo of America responded in a statement to news website Kotaku on Thursday after an anonymous employee filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board in Redmond, Washington against Nintendo and contracting company Aston Carter on April 15. The complaint accuses Nintendo and Aston C...

Netflix Considers Low-Cost Streaming Tier With Ads, After 1st Drop in Subscribers in a Decade

Service lost 200,000 subscriptions in Q1 2022, projects loss of 2 million more in Q2 ― Netflix CEO Reed Hastings said on Tuesday that the company is considering introducing an ad-supported streaming tier at a lower subscription cost. Hastings said, "Those that have followed Netflix know that I've been against the complexity of advertising and a big fan of the simplicity of subscription. But as much a...
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Polygon Pictures Works on 'Love, Death & Robots' Volume 3

Sci-fi anthology series debuts new season on May 20 ― Polygon Pictures president and CEO Shuzo John Shiota revealed on Wednesday that Polygon Pictures worked on the third volume of Netflix's Love, Death & Robots animated anthology series. Shiota did not reveal any further details on his studio's contribution or how much his studio contributed. clear="all"> これこれ、ポリゴンが参加した作品!5月20日、ネットフリックスで配信! https://...

Crunchyroll's CEO Colin Decker Leaves Company; Rahul Purini Becomes New President

Purini served as COO for Crunchyroll/Funimation ― Sony Pictures Entertainment revealed on Tuesday that Crunchyroll's chief executive officer Colin Decker is leaving the company. Crunchyroll's chief operating officer and Funimation's longtime COO Rahul Purini will become the company's new president. Decker will remain with the company for a few weeks during the transition. As COO, Purini spearheaded C...
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Toei Promises Work Practice Changes After Labor Standards Recommendation

Female Toei assistant producer filed suit against Toei last year for overwork, sexual harassment ― The legal portal site Bengo4.com reported last week that the Central Labor Relations Committee's Labor Standards Inspection Office recommended corrective action to Japanese media company Toei in response to the company's alleged practice of working employees beyond legal limits and failing to provide pr...
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Anime Expo's Twitter Account 'Compromised'

Account posted profile picture, multiple posts promoting NFTs that were later deleted ― The official Instagram account for Anime Expo confirmed on Saturday that the convention's Twitter account was "compromised" earlier in the day. The Twitter account posted a profile picture and multiple posts promoting NFTs (non-fungible tokens). A Google web cache of the Twitter account shows that the original pos...
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Nintendo Expands Headquarters in Kyoto

Company to build new R&D facility ― Nintendo announced on Tuesday that it is expanding its main corporate headquarters in Kyoto. The company purchased approximately 10,000 square meters of land next to its existing headquarters for 5 billion yen (about US$39.9 million). Nintendo will build a new facility tentatively titled the "Corporate Headquarters Development Center, Building No. 2," which will be...
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Crunchyroll: Shojo Anime Genre Has Strong Growth Potential

Titles aimed at female audiences over-perform due to unmet demand from low supply ― Crunchyroll held a business seminar on Tuesday aimed at Japanese businesses. Part of the presentation centered on explaining current consumer trends in the west based on the service's viewership numbers. Chief Customer Officer Asa Suehira explained that while shonen battle anime and "isekai" fantasy series continue to...
daily briefs

AJA Releases Anime Industry Report Summary for 2020 in English

The Association of Japanese Animations (AJA) released the summary of the Anime Industry Report for the year 2020 in English on Monday. AJA released its report in Japanese in November (and released a free summary in Japanese), after releasing a preliminary report in Japanese last June. (The report is called the Anime Industry Report 2021 but it is based on data from the year 2020.) The report found...
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How Disney+ Is Promoting Itself To Japanese Anime Companies

"We deeply respect the works of Japanese creators, and we will transmit them overseas just the way they are," says Head of Animation ― Disney held a business seminar at AnimeJapan on Monday aimed at Japanese businesses. This was an interesting opportunity to gain some insight on how the media company is approaching the Japanese market. Gaku Narita (Executive Director, Original Content) introduced the...
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Anime Industry Report Editor: 2021 Was a Year of Recovery

Hiromichi Masuda pointed to several areas of the market which have experienced notable rebound since 2020 ― Anime Industry Report editorial supervisor Hiromichi Masuda held a presentation at AnimeJapan on Monday to describe current animation business trends. The seminar drew on information from the Association of Japanese Animations (AJA)'s Anime Industry Report 2021, but also briefly touched on how ...
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The Battle for Union Anime Dubs

The Crunchyroll merger has created the largest and most powerful anime company outside of Japan. Yet, pay rates for dubbing are among the lowest in the acting business, and the problem is even worse in anime. ― Crunchyroll and FUNimation are competitors no longer. Now merged into a single company under their parent company Sony, this new incarnation of Crunchyroll is the largest and most powerful ani...
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You Wouldn't Download Sgt. Frog, Would You?

Mine Yoshizaki's Sgt. Frog characters appeared in a 15-second ad to remind kids not to download movies. The ad, titled "STOP! Piracy Edition' Keroro Gunso x 'NO MORE Movie Thief,'" sees Keroro and his fellow aliens quickly captured when they attempt to pirate media on various devices. The characters appeared in a similar, longer video ad in December. The property has worked with anti-piracy effort...
daily briefs

Netflix Tests New Payment Model for Account Sharing

Test takes place in Chile, Costa Rica, Peru ― Netflix announced on Wednesday that it is testing a new payment model for users who wish to share accounts between separate households. The test will place over the next few weeks in Chile, Costa Rica, and Peru. Users with Netflix's Basic, Standard, or Premium plans will be able to share a single account with an additional user outside the household for 2...

Sol Press: Company 'Can No Longer Provide Refunds'

Company at standstill for about 90% of orders until CEO returns ― The social media manager for publisher Sol Press, Tsmalls, revealed on Twitter on Monday that the company has reached a point where it can no longer provide refunds for about 90% of orders. Tsmalls stated that the company is at a standstill until the CEO returns, but did not share when that would be or where the CEO currently is. Kadok...

Man Arrested for Threatening Sega 12 Times

Office worker was frustrated after losing online game ― The Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department arrested a 54-year-old male office worker Akira Watanabe for sending 12 threatening emails to Sega. Between January and February, the man sent emails from his mobile phone to the inquiry address of Sega Sammy Holdings, saying that he would "set fire to the company" and "kill employees." He confessed in an...
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Maid Cafés Aren't Just For Male Otaku Anymore

The maid cafés of Akihabara need no introduction. Yet unbeknownst to many, maid café culture has been undergoing a sea change in the recent COVID years. Kim Morrissy visited two cafés to see how the iconic establishments are adapting. ― For anyone with a keen interest in anime subculture, the maid cafés of Akihabara need no introduction. Despite their ubiquity in anime, however, they feel representat...
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Square Enix, Bandai Namco Ent. Donate to Ukraine

Square Enix donates US$500,000 to UNHCR; Bandai Namco gives 100 million yen to Save the Children ― Square Enix and Bandai Namco Entertainment announced donations this week for humanitarian aid to Ukraine. Square Enix will donate US$500,000 to United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), while Bandai Namco Entertainment will donate 100 million yen (approximately US$845,000) to the Save the C...
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Man Withdraws Allegations Against Evangelion Voice Actor Daman Mills

Man previously asserted that between 2014 and 2015, Mills groped, masturbated next to him ― Update: 3/17/22 - Duncan has told ANN that the allegations he made against Daman Mills were fabricated. The original article begins below. The Ohio man that previously accused Evangelion film and Sonny Boy voice actor Daman Mills of groping him and masturbating next to him while he was asleep when he was a tee...
daily briefs

Journal of Anime and Manga Studies Joins Directory of Open Access Journals

― The staff of the Journal of Anime and Manga Studies (JAMS) announced on March 1 that the journal has joined the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ). The staff of JAMS describes the journal: The Journal of Anime and Manga Studies (JAMS) is dedicated to the scholarly analysis of anime, manga, cosplay, and the fandom surrounding these areas for researchers and those interested in anime and its c...

Crunchyroll, Wakanim Suspend Services in Russia

Nintendo suspends sales/shipments to Russia; Niantic removes games; Sony Music pulls out ― Sony-owned anime streaming services Crunchyroll and Wakanim announced that they are suspending services in Russia due to the current situation surrounding the country's invasion of Ukraine. Neither website works in Russia, and shows scheduled for release have already been canceled in the country. Neither compan...

9 Former/Current Sony PlayStation Employees Accuse Company of Sexual Harassment, Discrimination

Emma Majo filed lawsuit on behalf of women for gender discrimination, wrongful termination in November 2021 ― Eight former and current Sony Interactive Entertainment employees have added their accounts to a proposed class-action lawsuit against Sony PlayStation accusing the company of sexual harassment and discrimination. Former IT security analyst Emma Majo filed a lawsuit for gender discrimination ...
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Boruto Twitter Account Warns Of Unlicensed NFTs

"No license has been issued to authorize such products. Please watch out for false information." ― The official Boruto anime Twitter account posted notices in Japanese, Chinese, and English on Friday warning of unlicensed NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) using the Naruto/Boruto franchise names. The English tweet states: "We have been receiving inquiries regarding the authenticity of the information that sp...
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What We Know About the Funimation-Crunchyroll Merger

Crunchyroll brand will takeover home video releases, company is working on streamlining sub, dub options ― With Funimation's anime content heading to Crunchyroll, fans have raised many questions about how the transition will be handled from a consumer perspective. After speaking with representatives of Crunchyroll and Funimation, here is everything we know right now: Which Funimation titles will be ...

Disney to Stream Live-Action Files of Young Kindaichi Globally As Part of Partnership With NTV

Disney, NTV to jointly develop anime, live-action shows, variety shows for global market ― Nippon TV Holdings announced on Friday that it has entered into a strategic partnership with Walt Disney Japan. The two companies will jointly develop various content for the global market such as live-action series, anime, and variety shows. As part of the partnership, Disney+ will stream the upcoming live-act...
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Amazon Prime Halts Streaming in Russia; Koei Tecmo Donates US$500,000 to Ukraine

Good Smile suspends, cancels orders in Russia ― Amazon announced on Tuesday that it is halting its Amazon Prime streaming service in Russia due to the country's ongoing invasion of Ukraine. The company also suspended shipment of retail products to customers based in Russia and Belarus, and it will no longer accept new Russia and Belarus-based Amazon Web Services customers and third-party sellers. Ama...
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Megumi Ogata Comments on Seiyū Awards Win: Voice Acting World Needs To Be More "Gender-free"

Veteran voice actor of Shinji Ikari questioned the need for separating award categories by gender ― On Saturday, voice actress Megumi Ogata won the "Best Lead Actress Award" for the 16th Annual Seiyū Awards. The award is given to the best leading performances from an actress during the year. In her acceptance speech, Ogata called for the voice acting world to become more "gender-free," saying that th...
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Voice Actor, ADR Director Daman Mills Accused of Sexual Misconduct

Man alleges Mills groped him, masturbated next to him in his sleep ― Update: 3/17/22 - Duncan has told ANN that the allegations he made against Daman Mills were fabricated. Update: 03/14/22: The alleged victim has retracted his accusations and issued the following statement to Anime News Network: At this time, I wish to permanently retract my statements and allegations regarding Daman Mills. I wish t...
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Belle, Rurouni Kenshin The Final Films Win VFX-Japan Awards

Godzilla Singular Point, Star Wars: Visions also win ― The VFX-Japan Awards announced this year's winners in each of its seven categories on Thursday. Live-Action Theatrical Film Category: Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Final, and Rurouni Kenshin Saishūshō The Beginning Animated Theatrical Film Category: BELLE Television/Distribution Program Anime VFX Category: live-action Alice in Borderland season...
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BL Manga Café Closes Due to Safety Concerns Around Male Non-Customers

According to closure notice, the women-only café received a large number of male visitors at night with unknown intent ― The BL manga café Libre Sendai confirmed on Monday that the establishment has ceased operations as of February 28. The notice also offered a reason for the closure: although the café's clientele was women-only, it would receive a large number of male visitors at night with unknown ...
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Studio Giants Anime Studio Begins Bankrupcy Proceedings

Company ended anime production in August 2021 ― Former anime production studio Studio Giants has started bankrupcy proceedings on Wednesday. The Tokyo District Court approved the decision to file for bankrupcy on February 14. The deadline for hearings, reports, and investigations regarding this matter is on May 12. Studio Giants was established in 1975 and officially founded in 1979. The company dism...
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Japan Cartoonists Association Issues Statement on Russia's Invasion of Ukraine

Association wishes for swift end to the armed conflict, affirms manga's anti-war roots ― The Japan Cartoonists Association issued a formal statement on its website regarding Russia's invasion of Ukraine, stating that it wishes for a swift end to the armed conflict. The Association affirmed its anti-war stance, explaining that the rise of Japanese manga took place after the end of World War II, and th...

Funimation's Anime Content Heads to Crunchyroll

Newly licensed anime series will stream on Crunchyroll moving forward ― Funimation and Crunchyroll announced on Tuesday that Funimation and Wakanim's anime library and simulcast content are moving to Crunchyroll on Tuesday. Starting with the spring 2022 season, their newly licensed anime series will only stream on Crunchyroll. Funimation will only stream new episodes of continuing series. Crunchyroll...

NPD Bookscan via The Beat: Manga Made Up 76.71% of Adult Fiction Graphic Novel Sales in 2021

The Beat: Manga volumes sold see 171% rise from 2020 ― The comics news website The Beat reported NPD BookScan's graphic novel sales figures for 2021 on February 4. The "Adult Fiction" category saw the highest increase in sales in 2021, with the manga subcategory making up 76.71% of the volumes sold in the Adult Fiction category. NPD Bookscan Executive Director of Business Development Kristen McLean t...

Anime Studio White Fox Apologizes For Alleged Gender Discriminatory Hiring Practices

Company advertised production assistant position for women under age 26 ― Anime studio WHITE FOX issued an apology on its Twitter account on Tuesday for allegedly engaging in gender discriminatory hiring practices. The studio's recruitment page advertised a production assistant position specifying a woman under the age of 26. ANN confirmed that 2019 caches of the recruitment page specified a "woman u...
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MAPPA Establishes New Studio Specializing in CGI in Osaka

New studio to work in 3DCG, background art, photography, finishing, editing, design ― Animation studio MAPPA announced on Tuesday that it has established a new studio in Osaka that will specialize in CGI work, specifically 3DCG, background art, photography, finishing, editing, and design. The company established the studio in Osaka so that creators and students who live in the Kansai region who do no...
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Interview With Attack on Titan The Final Season Director, CG Producer Streamed

Yuichiro Hayashi & Yusuke Tannawa discuss production challenges, notable scenes, manga creator Hajime Isayama's involvement ― Pony Canyon streamed an English-subtitled interview with Attack on Titan The Final Season director Yuichiro Hayashi and CG producer Yusuke Tannawa on Sunday. The two discussed the production situation and challenges, as well as notable scenes from the anime and the involvement...
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Bandai Namco Filmworks Names New Executive Positions

Executive board members, department heads revealed ― Bandai Namco Holdings Inc. revealed new executive positions for its new Bandai Namco Filmworks Inc. subsidiary on February 17. The company will form Bandai Namco Filmworks Inc. through merging the anime studio Sunrise Inc., the visual business operations of Bandai Namco Arts Inc., and Bandai Namco Rights Marketing Inc. The subsidiary company's exec...
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Aquaplus Appoints Minoru Noda as New CEO

Also: former president Naoya Shimokawa is now chief operating officer to focus on game development ― Aquaplus announced on Tuesday that it has appointed Minoru Noda as the company's new CEO. The company explained that the company made the appointment so that former Aquaplus president Naoya Shimokawa can focus on game and product developement. Noda has previously worked in game related duties in Kadok...
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Bushiroad Announces Win in First Civil Suit for Defamation

Company pursuing individuals for online harassment of talent, voice actors ― Last year, entertainment company Bushiroad announced that the company was exploring legal options for dealing with online slander, including working with law enforcement. The company announced an update to those legal proceedings on Tuesday, including its first civil suit. Bushiroad stated that because the statements are car...

Crunchyroll Launches Streaming App on Switch

App will allow offline viewing ― Crunchyroll announced on Thursday that it is launching its anime streaming app on the Nintendo Switch. The app will allow offline viewing, and the company stated this is the first Switch app with this feature. Crunchyroll streamed a trailer: Epic Games' Unreal Engine technology powers the app. Funimation launched its anime streaming app on Switch in December 2020. Son...
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Attack on Titan The Final Season Episode Director Goes Home 'For the First Time in 3 Days'

MAPPA has previously faced criticism from animators for "factory-like" conditions ― In two (now deleted) tweets posted last week, Attack on Titan the Final Season episode director and animator Teruyuki Omine shared that he was finally able to return to his home for the first time in three days. MAPPA's work culture has faced criticism in the past when an animator described the studio's working condit...
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Former Sunrise Producer Shares Recollections of Studio's Shuffling

Masuo Ueda: "I suppose the countdown to my departure from Sunrise began with that meeting [in 1993]." ― Anime producer Masuo Ueda, who formerly worked as a managing director at Sunrise (soon to be consolidated into Bandai Namco Filmworks Inc.), shared his recollections of the studio in a Twitter thread on Monday. He reflected on a meeting he had with the president, the managing director, and the exec...

GKIDS, Tubi Enter Content Partnership Deal

Tubi begins streaming animated films from GKIDS this month ― GKIDS and streaming service Tubi announced on Friday that they are entering a content partnership deal. Tubi will begin streaming animated films from GKIDS later this month, and it will stream additional titles later this year. GKIDS has licensed numerous anime, including Mirai, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Future Boy Conan, Belle, The Deer Kin...
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Anime Director Shinji Takamatsu Discusses Sunrise Shuffling

"The disappearance of Sunrise seems to have finally come." ― RobiHachi and Cute High Earth Defense Club anime franchise director Shinji Takamatsu discussed the recent reorganizing of Bandai Namco Holdings Inc's IP Production Unit, including the animation studio Sunrise, in a series of tweets on Wednesday. Takamatsu reminisced about his time with studio dating back to 1983, just four years after the s...
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Japanese Cabinet Meeting Discusses Anime Industry Wages

Cabinet acknowledges low wages for young people, but JAniCA rep says much more work needs to be done ― The low wages for animation industry workers in Japan is an internationally recognized problem. The subject was brought up in a Cabinet meeting in Japan on Friday, when assembly member Hiroyuki Moriyama asked the following question: "I have heard that wages for animators in China are an order of mag...
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Monica Rial, Jamie Marchi Launch Podcast About Vic Mignogna Defamation Case

Voice actresses Monica Rial and Jamie Marchi released the first episode of the "In Touch" podcast focusing on the 2019 defamation case filed by fellow voice actor Vic Mignogna. The podcast, which aims to be updated monthly, retells the events from March and Rial's perspective. The first episode lays out the timeline of events, from Funimation contacting Mignogna about its investigation into allega...
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74 Tsutaya Retail Chain Stores to End Video Rental Business by October 2023

Tsutaya chain overall to rework 900 locations that offer rentals into hybrid stores ― Top Culture Co., Ltd. — which operates 74 Tsutaya retail chain stores in Tokyo and nine other prefectures — announced in July a medium-term management plan to end video rental business at its stores by the end of the fiscal year ending in October 2023. This is the first time that any of the franchise owners of Tsuta...
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Hawaii's KIKU-TV Relaunches as Part of KITV4 Network

Channel resumes airing Japanese, Filipino programming; will add Hawaiian cultural programming ― The official website for Hawaii's KITV4 channel announced on January 31 that the KIKU-TV channel has relaunched as KITV4's sister channel. Byron Allen, owner of Allen Media Broadcasting and KITV4, closed the purchase of the channel on January 31. The channel started airing on February 1 and features Japane...
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Website Maintainers Charged for Posting Manga Scripts Without Authorization

Suspects allegedly posted scripts of Kengan Omega, other manga 'virtually unchanged' ― The Fukuoka Prefectural Police filed charges of copyright infringement against a company and a 44-year-old male employee who allegedly maintained a "spoiler site" that posted nearly complete text from manga chapters without authorization. According to the charges, the Tokyo-based company and the employee from Kanaz...
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Mamoru Hosoda, Mitsuo Iso, Toshiyuki Inoue To Appear In Hand-Drawn: Documentary Film

Felicity Morland's documentary is currently in post-production with planned 2022 release ― Japanese animation legends Mamoru Hosoda (BELLE, Summer Wars, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time), Mitsuo Iso (Dennō Coil, The Orbital Children), and Toshiyuki Inoue (key animator on Akira, Kiki's Delivery Service, Maquia - When the Promised Flower Blooms) will be interviewed in Felicity Morland's Hand-Drawn: Docu...

Amazon Prime Raises Subscription Prices

Annual price raises from US$119 to US$139 ― Amazon announced on Thursday that it is raising the annual subscription price of its Amazon Prime service from US$119 to US$139 and its monthly subscription price from US$12.99 to US$14.99. The company plans to triple the amount of original shows and movies that debut on the Amazon Prime Video streaming service. Amazon revealed in its Q4 earnings report tha...

4 Japanese Publishers Sue Cloudflare for 460 Million Yen

Publishers allege that Cloudflare offered data services to piracy websites ― Japanese publishers Kodansha, Shueisha, Shogakukan, and Kadokawa formally filed their planned lawsuit against the American Internet infrastructure company Cloudflare on Tuesday. The lawsuit alleges that Cloudflare distributes data for manga piracy sites that infringe on the publishers' copyrights, and it seeks an injunction ...
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Fate/Grand Order Game Producer Yosuke Shiokawa Leaves Delight Works to Form New Studio

Aniplex completes acquisition of Lasengle, Delight Works' game development company ― Bloomberg reported on Monday that Fate/Grand Order producer Yosuke Shiokawa has left Delight Works to form his own new studio, Fahrenheit 213, which will focus on the development of new intellectual property. Aniplex revealed on Tuesday that it has acquired all shares of Lasengle from Delight Works. This completes th...

Asahi, Kyodo: 4 Japanese Publishers to Sue Cloudflare for Offering Data Services to Manga Piracy Sites

Kodansha, Shueisha, Shogakukan, Kadokawa to seek 400 million yen ― The Asahi Shimbun paper and the news agency Kyodo reported on Sunday that the Japanese publishers Kodansha, Shueisha, Shogakukan, and Kadokawa have decided to file a lawsuit against the American Internet infrastructure company Cloudflare early next month in the Tokyo District Court. The lawsuit will allege that Cloudflare distributes ...
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GENDA Acquires Remaining Shares of Sega's Arcade Business

Company to rename all 196 Sega arcade centers in Japan to GiGO ― Global Entertainment Network for Dreams and Aspirations (GENDA) announced on Friday that it has acquired the other 14.9% of shares of arcade and amusement center company GENDA Sega Entertainment, and is renaming the company GENDA GiGO Entertainment. GENDA will soon rename all 196 Sega arcade centers across Japan as GiGO (which stands fo...
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Silicon Studio Subsidiary Ignis Imageworks Sues Zener Works for 222 Million Yen in Unpaid Fees

Zener Works allegedly underpaid Ignis Imageworks for asset development of smartphone game ― Silicon Studio subsidiary Ignis Imageworks filed a lawsuit against game console software developer Zener Works at the Tokyo district court on Thursday, with Ignis Imageworks seeking 222 million yen (about US$1.95 million) in allegedly unpaid outsourcing fees. Ignis Imageworks stated in the lawsuit that it ente...
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High Guardian Spice, Onyx Equinox Creators Discuss the Shows' Low Budgets

Both Crunchyroll Original shows were significantly low budget by U.S. animation standards ― In 2018, shortly after Crunchyroll announced High Guardian Spice as the first "Crunchyroll Originals" animated project, head of Crunchyroll Studios Margaret Dean told Digiday that the lineup was "entirely funded by Ellation with budgets in the same range as what anime shows typically cost." Years later, High G...
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Trade Group: Manga Pirate Sites Cost Industry 1.19 Trillion Yen in 2021

Authorized Books of Japan (ABJ) says manga piracy has soared in popularity since the start of the pandemic Sankei News reported on Saturday that according to the Authorized Books of Japan (ABJ), a Tokyo-based association working to crack down on pirated manga, manga piracy cost the industry a total of 1.19 trillion yen (approximately US$8.76 billion) in 2021. This represents a sharp increase of 4.8...

Netflix Raises Subscription Prices in U.S., Canada

Subscription plans now cost US$19.99, US$15.49, US$9.99 on different subscription levels ― Netflix announced on Friday that it has raised the price of its subscription plans in the United States and Canada. The service's standard plan, which allows users to stream in HD on up to two separate devices, raised its price from US$13.99 to US$15.49 per month. The service's premium plan, which allows users ...
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Platinum Games Appoints Atsushi Inaba as New CEO, President

Kenichi Sato resigned from position at end of December ― Platinum Games announced on Thursday that CEO and president Kenichi Sato has resigned from his position at the end of December 2021, and vice president Atsushi Inaba has been appointed as the new CEO and president. Inaba is also the company's studio head. Sato will still be involved with the company as an advisor. He had been CEO and president ...
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Manga Plus Editor Explains Why Shonen Jump+ Handles Overseas Distribution In-House

Manga Plus data is used for determining which titles get anime adaptations ― Shueisha editor Yūta Momiyama, who manages Weekly Shonen Jump's Shonen Jump+ and MANGA Plus online services, wrote a blog post to explain why the Shonen Jump+ editorial department manages overseas distribution through MANGA Plus in-house. First, he explained that it is typical for publishers to sell the overseas publishing r...
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Sega Establishes Sapporo Studio for Development, Debugging

Takaya Segawa appointed president of new studio ― Sega announced on Tuesday that it has established a new studio in Sapporo for devleopment and debugging on December 1. Takaya Segawa (Yakyū Tsuku!!, Saka Tsuku, Phantasy Star Online 2) is president of the new studio. SEGA established "Sega Sapporo Studio" to "secure a high-quality and stable development line." Locally hired employees will design, prog...

Hasbro Appoints Chris Cocks as CEO

Company also appoints Eric Nyman as President, COO effective February 25 ― Hasbro announced on Wednesday that it is appointing Chris Cocks as the new Chief Executive Officer and as a board member for the company effective February 25. The company is also appointing Eric Nyman as the President and Chief Operating Officer effective the same day. Rich Stoddart was acting as Hasbro's interim CEO after pr...

Japan's CODA, Companies From 12 Other Countries to Form International Anti-Piracy Organization Focusing on Manga, Anime

New organization including U.S.'s Motion Picture Association to launch in April ― Nikkei Asia reported on January 1 that companies and organizations from over 13 countries are cooperating to form the International Anti-Piracy Organization (IAPO), which will launch in April. Japan's Content Overseas Distribution Association (CODA) is at the center of the new organization. CODA includes 32 Japanese com...

Adult Swim, Cartoon Network's Viewership Falls Over 25% in 2021

Adult Swim's viewership dropped to 386,000, Cartoon Network's to 201,000 ― Entertainment news website Variety published a list on December 30 ranking television networks on the basis of their viewership in 2021. Adult Swim's viewership dropped 25% to 386,000, while Cartoon Network's viewership dropped 26% to 201,000. Adult Swim ranked at #41 on the list while Cartoon Network ranked at #72. Disney XD'...
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TBS Invests 2.5 Billion Yen in Seven Arcs Anime Studio

TBS acquired Seven Arcs Group in 2017 ― Taku Sasaki, president of Tokyo Broadcasting System Holdings, the parent company of the Japanese television network TBS, announced on Tuesday that the company has made a full-scale investment of 2.5 billion yen (about US$21.6 million) in the company Seven Arcs Group. TBS made the investment in an effort to strengthen its 3D and human resources. This is part of ...

Cinedigm to Acquire AsianCrush, RetroCrush's Owner Digital Media Rights

Cinedigm to add DMR's 10 channels ― Cinedigm announced on Thursday that it has reached an agreement to acquire Digital Media Rights (DMR), the parent company of the RetroCrush, AsianCrush, and Midnight Pulp streaming services. With the addition of DMR's channels following the acquisition, Cinedigm will have 15 wholly-owned streaming services. DMR owns the following ten channels: AsianCrush, Midnight ...

AMC Networks Acquires Sentai Holdings, Sentai Filmworks, HIDIVE

Acquisition includes Cool Japan Fund member interests ― AMC Networks announced on Wednesday that it has acquired Sentai Holdings, LLC, which includes Sentai Filmworks and the HIDIVE streaming service. The acquisition includes all of the member interests from Cool Japan Fund, Inc., a public-private Japanese investment fund. AMC Networks interim CEO Matt Blank said: "This acquisition builds on AMC Netw...
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Veteran Producer Explains the Problems of Unionizing In the Anime Industry

Masuo Ueda points to historical factors, wage dumping as reasons for lack of unions today ― In a two-part online salon, anime producer Masuo Ueda tackled the topic of animator unions in the anime industry—or, to be precise, the lack thereof. Speaking with JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable and Knights of the Zodiac: Saint Seiya character designer Terumi Nishii on her YouTube channel, Ue...
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Game Maker Voltage Shuts Down U.S. Division

Voltage Entertainment USA division will be dissolved, liquidated ― The Japanese romance app game company Voltage Inc. announced on Thursday that it is shutting down its San Francisco-based Voltage Entertainment USA division. The company plans to dissolve and liquidate its U.S. division in 2022 to allocate its resources more efficiently, According to the company, growth of the women's game market in t...
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Manga Localization Company Amimaru Allegedly Trials Machine Translation For Commercial Manga Releases

Kodansha Comics denies investing in machine translation as a client ― An anonymous translator has told ANN that the manga translation and lettering company Amimaru has been trialing edited machine translations for commercial manga releases, calling it an "an excuse to pay translators less than they already do and mechanize the art of translation." "I'm disgusted by this move as an attempt to destroy ...
interest

Yoshiyuki Tomino: "Japan Is No Longer a Leader in Animation"

Gundam creator points to unwillingness to innovate, Chinese competition as factors that threaten Japan's anime dominance ― The Hokkaido-based news website Real Economy reported on Monday that Gundam creator Yoshiyuki Tomino spoke at the Hokkaido Museum of Modern Art for the "World of Yoshiyuki Tomino" exhibit, which will run in Sapporo from October 17 to January 23. There, he spoke highly of the Hokk...
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2 Ad Agencies for Mangamura Piracy Site Ordered to Pay 11 Million Yen

Manga creator Ken Akamatsu filed lawsuit ― The Tokyo District Court ordered two advertisement agencies, MM Lab and Global Net, to pay 11 million yen (about US$96,303) for soliciting advertisements on Japanese-language manga piracy site Mangamura. Manga creator Ken Akamatsu (Love Hina, Negima!, UQ Holder!) filed the lawsuit against both agencies, claiming that his manga had been illegally posted on Ma...
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Embracer Group Enters Agreement to Acquire Dark Horse

Post-closing, Dark Horse will become Embracer's 10th operative group ― Dark Horse Comics announced on Tuesday that Embracer Group AB has entered into an agreement to acquire Dark Horse Media. After the agreement closes, Dark Horse will become the tenth operative group of the Embracer group. The specific transaction terms were not disclosed due to commercial reasons. Embracer will acquire 80% of Dark ...
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Delight Works' Yoshinori Ono Moves to Aniplex's New Company

Aniplex to acquire Fate/Grand Order developers, launch new subsidiary ― President and COO of developer Delight Works Yoshinori Ono announced on Monday that he is moving to the new company that will be formed after Aniplex acquires the entire game development division of Delight Works. Ono confirmed that the development and operations staff will transfer to Aniplex's new company. Titles such as Fate/G...
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34 Pro Fit Voice Actors Move to Nobuhiko Okamoto's Raccoon Dog Agency

Also: 5 other voice actors move to different agencies ― Talent management agency Pro Fit announced on Wednesday that 39 of its voice talent are transferring to new talent agencies, with 34 signing onto a new talent agency called Raccoon Dog that voice actor Nobuhiko Okamoto will establish on April 1 next year. Pro Fit recently announced last month that it will cease production operations on March 31,...

Aniplex Acquires Fate/Grand Order Development Unit From Delight Works

Aniplex to launch new wholly owned subsidiary for Fate/Grand Order developers ― Aniplex and developer Delight Works both announced on Wednesday that Aniplex is acquiring the entire game development division of Delight Works. Delight Works is first spinning off the division as a new company, and then Aniplex will acquire the new company and turn it into its new wholly owned subsidiary. The new company...
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Penguin Random House Argues That Its Acquisition of Simon & Schuster Will Be 'Pro Competitive'

Penguin Random House signed deal last year to acquire Simon & Schuster for US$2.175 billion ― Entertainment news source Variety reported on Monday that Penguin Random House and ViacomCBS's attorneys argued in court that Penguin Random House's proposed acquisition of Simon & Schuster will benefit authors and be "pro competitive," adding that it should not be blocked under federal antitrust law. Their ...
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8-Bit Establishes New Studio in Niigata Prefecture

Prefectural government to consider subsidies, other support measures for new office ― Anime studio 8-Bit announced on November 19 that it has established a new studio in Niigata prefecture on November 1 as the studio's first regional office. The studio will work on television anime series and create images for related products such as character goods. The prefectural government is considering subsidi...
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Court Hands Suspended Sentence to ufotable Founder Hikaru Kondo for Tax Evasion

Kondo sentenced to 20 months in prison, but will not serve time if he remains in good behavior for 3 years ― The Tokyo District Court handed a guilty verdict and sentence to anime studio ufotable's founder, representative director, and president Hikaru Kondo on the charge of violating the Corporation Tax Act and Consumption Tax Act by failing to pay 138 million yen (about US$1.25 million) in taxes. K...
daily briefs

Bloomberg: Dark Horse 'Weighs Options That Could Include Sale'

― The Bloomberg news website reported on Wednesday that North American comic book and manga publisher Dark Horse Comics is "working with an adviser to weigh options that could include a sale." Bloomberg said its reporting was according to "people familiar with the matter," and added it could not reach a Dark Horse representative for comment. Bloomberg mentioned the situation in an article about a cu...
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Animate's Ikebukuro Shop Expands to Be 'World's Biggest Anime Shop'

Store has grand reopening in spring 2023 ― Japanese store chain Animate announced on Friday that its main Ikebukuro store will expand to become the "world's biggest anime shop." The expanded store will have its grand reopening in spring 2023, which is also Animate's 40th anniversary. The new expansion will be built at the site of the former Ikebukuro Public Health Center, and it will be integrated wi...
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Evangelion Store Online Reports Credit Card Data Breach

17,828 customers' credit card information illegally accessed ― Evangelion Store Online announced on Tuesday that its website had a credit card data breach, and 17,828 customers' credit card information was illegally accessed. On July 12, credit card companies contacted the online store about concerns of a credit card data breach. The store removed the option for card payment on that day. At the same ...
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Kojima Productions Establishes New Division in Los Angeles

New division is dedicated to music, TV, film ― Game developer Hideo Kojima's Kojima Productions company announced on Monday that it has launched a new division dedicated to music, television, and film. The new division is located in Los Angeles, California. Riley Russell is in charge of the new division. Russell had worked at Sony Interactive Entertainment as chief legal officer and VP of business af...

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