AnimeJapan held a presentation on the world of anime business, with Anime Industry Report editorial supervisor Hiromichi Masuda giving the details.
According to Masuda, while we still don’t have all the numbers for 2021, we have enough to see that anime movies, TV productions and live events are all on the upswing after 2020.
The Japanese box office in 2020 was basically in a slump during the COVID restrictions, except for one major (put stress on the major) exception: Demon Slayer – Kimetsu no Yaiba – The Movie: Mugen Train. To put that in perspective, the anime movie that did second best in Japan that year was Doraemon the Movie: Nobita’s New Dinosaur, and it couldn’t even reach 10% of Demon Slayer’s ticket sales.
But in 2021, with movies like BELLE, Evangelion: 3.0+1.0: Thrice Upon A Time, and Jujutsu Kaisen 0, tickets are selling much better.
In 2020, 185 TV anime were produced, and that number rose to 199 in 2021.
Live-events obviously took a dive during COVID, and Masuda is not sure they will ever reach their pre-COVID levels. He thinks people will still want to have live events, though, and brought up the possibility that both virtual and live events will be in anime’s future.
He also discussed the international interest in anime, but noted there are concerns of censorship if anime is made for markets outside of Japan, because of different cultural beliefs.
At the end of his presentation, Masuda remarked, “The numbers from 2021 are coming in right now, and it’s clear that they’re better than in 2020. I believe they will keep going up in the year 2022. As a closing remark, I believe that Japanese anime will keep spreading its wings all around the world. Please keep an eye out for future developments in Japanese anime.”
Danica Davidson is the author of the bestselling Manga Art for Beginners with artist Melanie Westin. She is also the author of its upcoming sequel, Manga Art for Everyone, and the first-of-its-kind manga chalk book Chalk Art Manga, both illustrated by professional Japanese mangaka Rena Saiya. Check out her other comics and books at www.danicadavidson.com.