Hollywood is increasingly interested in anime movies. Both live-action adaptations of manga such as One Piece, and Yu Yu Hakusho, and animated films of famous anime such as Jujutsu Kaisen 0 and Demon Slayer: Mugen Train. And, as much as anime becomes increasingly popular worldwide, its cinematic films have not been valued with big budgets in Japan as they are in the US.
Anime movie budgets are ridiculous compared to Disney, and Warner Bros. animated movies. and other studios. According to the CBR website, “ although they are getting much better box office revenue because of it. This can be attributed to several factors, most notably the working conditions in the anime industry. As a result, anime is bringing Hollywood’s bloated animation budgets under intense scrutiny.”
While 2022 was a great year for anime films worldwide, the opposite occurred for Hollywood animations. The Toy Story spin-off was a flop with $200 million and a big budget, as was Strange World, and several others. These animations had identical budgets to the year’s top live-action hits like Top Gun: Maverick.
Anime in Hollywood
While the animations of the big Hollywood studios are going through problems, animes have smaller budgets and collect much more.
Demon Slayer: Mugen Train had a budget of $16 million, “a paltry number compared to even the cheapest of Hollywood animated films. However, it was considered a great anime film production, and its gross of more than half a billion at the box office was proof of that.”
“The biggest difference between most of these anime films and their Hollywood counterparts is their use of traditional animation rather than CGI, the former of which Japan is generally more adept at.
Another comparison is the devaluation of workers in the anime industry who are overworked but earn low wages. Many of these animators live plagued with health problems and in conditions of poverty.
“ So it seems that, overall, anime has the best ideas when it comes to balancing the visual spectacle with the budget. Some of that is offset by the unattractive salary in the industry, but it seems that more often than not, Hollywood goes too far in the opposite direction without much profit. This is perhaps a symptom of the growing slaughter of animation in the West, while anime does nothing but grow in its reach and revenue .”