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Interview: Stars Align Director Kazuki Akane (Part 2)


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Herb Disoriented



Joined: 20 Mar 2020
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2020 3:54 pm Reply with quote
I want to support the second season for Stars Align! The story really is different in a good way and it really does mean a lot to me. There are not many like this out there and I think it was an amazing idea to make it into into an anime. I remember when I was a child and afraid when I saw my father was home. It made me happy to know that it wasn't for a comedic effect and that it was an emotional story of a simple boy who was in a little less simple situation. This anime really called to me in a way all others have not.
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KPK10



Joined: 14 Aug 2019
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2020 7:22 pm Reply with quote
Wait if one season/cour cost $2.7M to make I can totally see them getting that from something like Kickstarter. It's actually not THAT much I see a lot of projects aiming higher than that and getting that goal.
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whiskeyii



Joined: 29 May 2013
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2020 9:53 pm Reply with quote
Pretty sure Answerman answered this question a while ago in a column about vanity projects, but as far as I remember, I think it costs around $2-3 million per episode, rather than per season. I don't doubt the director is giving actual costs, but I worry those might be bottom-of-the-barrel, dirt-cheap costs.

Not entirely sure if this is feasible, but given that Stars Align has prominent LGBTQ+ themes, maybe it would be wise to sidle up to Netflix to see if they’re interested in putting down production money? They already dabble in anime, they allow Japan-exclusive weekly airings, and stuff like She-Ra, Voltron, and The Dragon Prince have prominent LGBTQ+ rep as well as devoted fan bases, so maybe...? Alternatively, maybe Crunchyroll is interested in dipping their toe in the production committee.

EDIT: Forgot to add, but I really enjoyed this interview as well, though it definitely felt like the director had switched places with the interviewer by the end! Laughing I appreciate the honesty on both sides, though!
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TheCanipaEffect



Joined: 27 Apr 2017
Posts: 25
PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2020 11:38 pm Reply with quote
whiskeyii wrote:
Pretty sure Answerman answered this question a while ago in a column about vanity projects, but as far as I remember, I think it costs around $2-3 million per episode, rather than per season. I don't doubt the director is giving actual costs, but I worry those might be bottom-of-the-barrel, dirt-cheap costs.

Not entirely sure if this is feasible, but given that Stars Align has prominent LGBTQ+ themes, maybe it would be wise to sidle up to Netflix to see if they’re interested in putting down production money? They already dabble in anime, they allow Japan-exclusive weekly airings, and stuff like She-Ra, Voltron, and The Dragon Prince have prominent LGBTQ+ rep as well as devoted fan bases, so maybe...? Alternatively, maybe Crunchyroll is interested in dipping their toe in the production committee.

EDIT: Forgot to add, but I really enjoyed this interview as well, though it definitely felt like the director had switched places with the interviewer by the end! Laughing I appreciate the honesty on both sides, though!


It's about 200-300K per episode (although that is widening). While other Kickstarter projects have reached into the millions, this hasn't been true for anime. Even popular studios like Trigger only managed 600K for Little Witch Academia and a decent chunk of any Kickstarter revenue has to go back to Kickstarter rewards.
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whiskeyii



Joined: 29 May 2013
Posts: 1790
PostPosted: Fri Mar 20, 2020 11:47 pm Reply with quote
TheCanipaEffect wrote:

It's about 200-300K per episode (although that is widening). While other Kickstarter projects have reached into the millions, this hasn't been true for anime. Even popular studios like Trigger only managed 600K for Little Witch Academia and a decent chunk of any Kickstarter revenue has to go back to Kickstarter rewards.


Welp, I stand corrected! (And by the by, if you're *that* Canipa Effect, hi, I love your videos! Very Happy)


Last edited by whiskeyii on Sat Mar 21, 2020 5:53 pm; edited 1 time in total
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himmel-YH



Joined: 21 Mar 2020
Posts: 1
PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2020 1:55 am Reply with quote
Putting this anime on platformes like Netflix or Hulu seems helpful. And if it is still hard to get enough funding to supports another season, how about just make a short season of 6 episodes?
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Jefcat



Joined: 09 Feb 2006
Posts: 27
Location: Hollywood
PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2020 10:15 am Reply with quote
The streaming services are definitely looking for programming but Amazon’s anime-centric service bombed a couple of years ago.
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#HayamiLover



Joined: 22 Jul 2018
Posts: 705
Location: Eastern Europe
PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2020 1:37 pm Reply with quote
I understand that life in Japan and in the West is really different, but do you really think that serious SoL anime are so far from Western life that this affects their popularity? If we do not take into account frank fantasy like ReZero or Attack of the Titans, then many of the most hyped in the West series had conditional Japanese daily life as a setting.
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Karasu-Lacryma



Joined: 20 Feb 2015
Posts: 91
PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2020 4:07 pm Reply with quote
I had no idea Kazuki Akane was heading this series! His Noein: To Your Other Self *sheepishly points to username* is what got me into anime and just animation as an artform in general to begin with. Not someone you hear about often, which is a shame. Hope he gets the funding and more directing opportunities in the future; he's got a lot of talent.
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Cardcaptor Takato



Joined: 27 Jan 2018
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 21, 2020 10:19 pm Reply with quote
Although it’s frustrating as I know Akane intended it to be a two cour show, I wonder if producing the rest as a film series could be a possible route like the Made in Abyss and Princess Principal sequel films. They could probably finish in a four part film series and then recut it into a TV show format like Space Battleship Yamato. Funimation could probably use some of their Sony cash to help co-fund it instead of paying for another Goku balloon at the Macy’s parade.
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#HayamiLover



Joined: 22 Jul 2018
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Location: Eastern Europe
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2020 12:34 am Reply with quote
Cardcaptor Takato wrote:
Although it’s frustrating as I know Akane intended it to be a two cour show, I wonder if producing the rest as a film series could be a possible route like the Made in Abyss and Princess Principal sequel films. They could probably finish in a four part film series and then recut it into a TV show format like Space Battleship Yamato. Funimation could probably use some of their Sony cash to help co-fund it instead of paying for another Goku balloon at the Macy’s parade.


This format will require a lot more money, not to mention the cost of promoting each of the four films. This is simply pointless compared to the second cour.
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Myskae



Joined: 22 Mar 2020
Posts: 1
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2020 5:17 am Reply with quote
Thank you for the interview.

Personally, I don't think that slice of life is not popular. I agree that action/fantasy is the most popular genre but I think that sports anime can have a wide audience for example.

About crowfunding, it's indeed difficult to produce an entire court from it but it may help a bit even if it's a small part. It can also be used to see that some people are willing to support the show.

Co-funding with international streaming services like Funimation seems to be a good idea too. It worth the try at least.
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Cardcaptor Takato



Joined: 27 Jan 2018
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2020 5:41 am Reply with quote
In Japan it seems like sports anime are popular but mainly when they fit into either the shonen trope mold like Major and Captain Tsubasa or if they have a heavy focus on attractive guys like Prince of Tennis or Kuroko’s Basketball or something like that. But I wonder how Stars Align did in Japan in comparison to shows like Ping Pong The Animation or Hanebado.
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dragon695



Joined: 28 Nov 2008
Posts: 1375
Location: Clemson, SC
PostPosted: Sun Mar 22, 2020 7:31 pm Reply with quote
Manga might be the best route, but would necessitate a catch 22 situation of still needing popularity in Japan to get publishers to provide overseas translation.

As for 8-bit, I would encourage him to tell the president that making multilingual subs available on region free disc media might be the future. While I cannot say for sure, I think if they were there, it might have been easier to convince overseas fans to support the anime by buying jp discs.. Of course, I don’t know what goes on with Funimation contracts, so it might not be possible to do this.
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yuna49



Joined: 27 Aug 2008
Posts: 3190
PostPosted: Tue Mar 24, 2020 10:57 am Reply with quote
I read an interview with Iso Mitsuo a dozen years ago where he recounted the problems finding someone to produce anime-original Dennou Coil. From Akane's comments, it doesn't seem like much has changed. Sadly anime continues to be a largely derivative art form relying on manga and novels for its content.

Quote:
Iso says that original works are not particularly welcomed or commended by the anime industry, which was originally created to animate manga in the first place. Like when everyone gets together to make an original anime but it doesn't sell... he ventures that perhaps this industry is not suited for making original projects.


https://forums.animesuki.com/showthread.php?p=1667717#post1667717
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