According to a report on web site animeanime.jp, some of the biggest news in the 2012 anime industry centered on the return to stability for some of the oldest studios in the industry while others saw their most important staff and talent leaving to create new companies of their own.
Toei Animation, one of the oldest studios in the anime industry, reported income of 33 billion yen in March, the highest ever in the company’s nearly 65 years of operation. With rock-solid properties on TV and elsewhere – the most recent One Piece Film Z took in 750 million yen on its first day alone – Toei remains a rock in a turbulent sea.
At the same time, a number of the most prestigious anime studios saw their employees leave for greener pastures.
Masao Maruyama, one of the founding members of studio Madhouse, left the company he helped create to found new production company MAPPA in 2011, which released a number of shows in 2012, including the well-received Kids on the Slope.
Major manga and light novel publisher Media Factory branched out to form production company Overlap, which in turn helped see 2012’s Medaka Box and Aquarion Evol anime series through production, while Wit Studio, founded on June 1, 2012, was the result of a number of mergers and acquisitions on the part of Production I.G.
With the anime industry in a state of flux outside of mega giants like Toei, it seems likely that we will continue to see similar upstarts in the coming year. Here’s hoping some of them do something spectacular.