by Mizuko Ito
This week's Fortune features an article, Anime Explosion on the growth of the anime and otaku market in the US. The gist of the message is that US companies catering to the otaku market have a unique formula for success that involves listening to fans and fandom esoterica, and embracing the latest distribution technologies. This includes a truce with online fansubbers and filesharing, where online distribution is tolerated until the show is licensed in the US, after which fansubbers will voluntary take their files down.
A few numbers jumped out at me. Conventions: Otakon in Baltimore was sold out this year with 22,000 fans. Anime Explo in Anaheim had 33,000. Anime and manga are now a $625 million industry in N. American retail. The ouput of the top US DVD distributor in the US, ADV, is more than the combined DVD distribution of Warner Brothers and Parmount, the top to US TV show distributors. No wonder Fortune is paying attention.
I loved this quote from Richard Taylor of Weta, working on a live action Evangelion film:
Once the Weta-ADV partnership hit the news, the company's in-box started overflowing. "We get a lot of e-mails, a lot of letters from people around the world about Lord of the Rings. But we get 25 e-mails about Evangelion to every one we get about Lord of the Rings," says Taylor. "And Evangelion has not even been made yet: It's just a whisper in the corridors of ADV, and it's a suggestion in the hallways of Weta."
Posted by Mizuko Ito at 2005年12月01日 22:12