By ROLAND KELTSHollywood has a new respect for anime sources, and is planning on turning many into potential blockbusters.
IN March last year, I had dinner in Los Angeles with two producers from US animation studios making American versions of anime originals. One, a Chinese-American, was from Imagi, the company working on this year’s computer-graphic Astro Boy. The other, a Filipino-American, was with Gonzo Digimation Holdings, the company that produces Afro Samurai, an original manga turned international anime series featuring Samuel L. Jackson’s voice.
Both producers were jovial, if anxious about the ongoing decline in US anime DVD sales. But they were also quite keen to share their experiences of working with their counterparts in Japan. “We showed a preview to some focus groups in Tokyo,” said the Imagi producer of Astro Boy, “and the results were disastrous. Our Astro Boy was too snarky, too mature. They wanted to reclaim the original character’s innocence.” (read more here)