In the case of Kiyoshi Kurosawa, a lot. It’s been reported that Kurosawa made about seven movies (three anime, one feature film) a year over the course of his filmmaking career. That’s a lot of work!
When you’re creating anime, does the staff get paid?
There are staff members working as freelancers and they do their own things, but for the most part we are paid for every single job we do. If we’re doing a movie, for example, for a specific budget, the staff will be paid for all the special effects shots, the location scouting, the set design, the props, the lighting, the soundtrack, the music, the animation, the sound mixing—for everything!
There are, indeed, some cases, where we must pay our staff, but in general it is the staff that pay us.
The main reason being that we can’t make it on our own, so we rely on other people.
With regards to staff on the animation, do you have staff like that on the production team for the series?
No, I don’t. The main staff members—and the main staff have a lot of different types—are the ones who oversee the visual effects for the series. They oversee everything from the design and all of the special effects, down to the background designs.
Because of those things, it usually takes a year before we’re done finishing the series. That’s how long it takes to produce a DVD.
How do you approach work on the series? How do you approach the anime? Do you put ideas down on paper and then draw them?
There is usually a storyboard from the animation department, where we explain how the story should look at each point of the visual system. That’s why we get a lot of people asking whether they can see that thing. Of course it doesn’t sound as funny as it was.
But then there are people like myself, and sometimes other people who were animators for the first time. The thing is, there isn’t a big difference between the staff that have worked on series before for the first time, who have been around for decades for the first time, and what I do: everything is the same. If the visual system looks the same from the first time, it’s easy to be fooled because they’ve got all those years of experience behind them, and if it looks different, then it’s a big
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