Magazine article Variety

Turning Manga into Anime

Magazine article Variety

Turning Manga into Anime

Article excerpt

Kadokawa is a major player in the manga and anime markets, with the former feeding the latter.

Among its most successful collaborators is Mamoru Hosoda, an animator who has taken over the hitmaker mantle of maestro Hayao Miyazaki with such films as "The Girl Who Leapt Through Time" (2006), "Summer Wars" (2009), "Wolf Children" (2012) and this year's "The Boy and the Beast," which earned $57 million since its July release. The first film was released by Kadokawa and all four were accompanied by comics and novels.

Kadokawa, however, faces the same turmoil as other Japanese publishers and production companies. The company is responding to a range of challenges from the rampant piracy in its backyard to rapid user migration from print to digital.

In July, Kadokawa and five other Japanese producers invested $3 million in increased capitalization for Anime Consortium Japan, a streaming, e-commerce and licensing company that offers anime in 10 languages to nearly 1 million overseas users through its Daisuki site.

"We're not limiting ourselves to Daisuki," says rep director and senior managing executive officer Shinichiro Inoue. Kadokawa is also streaming its anime in Japan via the Niconico site operated by corporate ally Dwango and in North America with Crunchyroll, Funimation and Sentai Filmworks. "If we continue to enjoy good conditions with a company (like ACJ), we stream with them. But if another company offers better conditions for an individual title, we'll go with them instead."

Kadokawa takes a similarly results-oriented view of anime piracy. …

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