The Tokyo Government is looking to expand anime's reach for as far as the eye can see. Putting into place an upcoming program that looks to assimilate anime into other cultures across the sea, the government has set up an initiative titled "Anime Overseas Expansion Step-Up Program". The purpose of this program will be to market the medium of anime to other cultures and see if the current popularity of anime in general can raised to its highest level yet. What else does this program contain from the Japanese government?
Aside from simply pushing more revenue into the marketing of anime from Japan, the government is looking to set up seminars and workshops for those interested in the industry. It will also be including a an open pitch process where the winner of the contest will receive a monetary prize for their ideas. Creators may even have the opportunity, should they win the contest, to have their pitch idea displayed at the prestigious festival of the Marche International Du Film D'Animation, or MIFA for short.
Recently, at Anime Expo 2019, a group of producers and executives at various film companies and anime/manga publishers got together to talk about a series of topics regarding the medium overall. The Project Anime panels saw creative minds from across the world discuss why anime was increasing in terms of popularity, so we're sure that this program from the Tokyo government will only assist in the cause overall. Though the panels that were discussed at the Expo tended to focus more on companies and the industry, the program mentioned here will focus on getting the word out to interested parties around the world.
One reason for anime's more recent success is that its caught the eye of Hollywood and numerous streaming services are recognizing the value that can be found in the medium itself. Amazon, Netflix, Crunchyroll, Funimation, and numerous others are creating big audience bases looking for any new, or returning, anime that they can get their hands on. While anime adaptations haven't been the BEST when it comes to Hollywood pictures, this isn't stopping studios from looking into the medium to find their next big hit.
Whether or not this program will be a wild, runaway success is yet to be seen, but we're sure that it won't hurt in spreading the "good news of anime" to new corners of the world.
What do you think of the "Anime Overseas Expansion Step-Up Program" from the Japanese government? Would it be something that you'd attend for its panels or for its contest? Feel free to let us know in the comments or hit me up directly on Twitter @EVComedy to talk all things comics, anime, or your anime pitches!