Making an anime costs a ton of money. From hiring animators and voice actors to the materials and production costs, it certainly ain’t easy on a studio’s budget. And once an anime airs, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the studio gets its money back too, as they rely on DVD and Blu-ray sales more to make money. It’s a tough business to say the least.
Visual Arts/Key president, Takahiro Baba, recently sat down with anime news site, Kai-You for an interview. They discussed the upcoming anime adaptation of the Key visual novel, Kud Wafter. In the interview, they discussed the reason why Key decided to go with crowdfunding to adapt the visual novel into an anime film. He said that the “sharp increase in the production cost of anime,” as well as the scarcity of investments for anime adaptations for games have forced them to go with Crowdfunding. Yes, this is from the company which made CLANNAD, Little Busters!, Angel Beats, Kanon, and Air.
As for the cost of how much it takes to make an anime, Baba also talked about them. According to the Visual Arts/Key president, making visual novels cost “from tens of millions of yen to 100 million yen”. Meanwhile, adapting them to a single-cour (usually 10-13 episodes) TV anime would cost about 400 million yen. So yeah, that would be a huge risk for them. Baba also added that big companies can get through with just one sponsor, but they (Key) cannot do such a thing. This is the reason why they experimented with crowdfunding.
The original Japan-only crowdfunding campaign ended on Sept. 29, exceeding all stretch goals for a total of ¥78,047,044. It then opened its international crowdfunding where it surpassed its initial goal of 3 million yen in just five days.However, it didn’t get its 15 million yen stretch goal, as the crowdfunding netted 8,980,540 yen. The Stretch goal would have lengthened the anime from its planned 40-50 minutes to a full hour.
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