Background notes for week 2, 20/10/2009



Toei Doga/Toei Animation, anime studio                 Osamu Tezuka, cartoonist/animator/writer/director

Mitsuteru Yokoyama, cartoonist/writer                      Shotaro Ishinomori, cartoonist/writer

Tatsunoko, anime studio                                                 Mushi Production, Tezuka’s anime studio

Ryuichi Yokoyama, cartoonist/animator                    Otogi Production, Yokoayama’s anime studio

Takeda Puppet Troupe, worked with Tezuka              Animation Group of Three, experimental animators

Tadahito Mochinaga, animator in Japan and China      Kihachiro Kawamoto, independent animator

Rankin-Bass, US studio                                                  Hayao Miyazaki, animator/director/writer/cartoonist

Isao Takahata, animator/director/writer                   Yasuo Otsuka, animator/director

TeleCartoons Japan, anime compa                              Studio KAI, anime company

P Production, anime company                                       TMS/Tokyo Movie Shinsha, anime company

TV Doga, anime company                                               Osamu Dezaki, animator/director

Gisaburo Sugii, animator/director                                 Machiko Hasegawa, cartoonist


The influence of Osamu Tezuka on anime and manga is enormous, both because of the number of his assistants who set up their own studios using his methods, and because the destruction of prewar materials and the strict censorship of what remained meant that few Japanese had much awareness of the history of these media before Tezuka. Many websites and writers will tell you that Tezuka ‘invented’ or originated’ this and that: take this with a pinch of salt and check it out thoroughly before making up your mind. I find it helps to think of Tezuka as a bridge between pre-war and post-war anime, as well as an innovator in his own right. He was undoubtedly a great artist, but there were great artists before and after him. Considering them will help you to appreciate his genius.


The first animation on Japanese TV was imported foreign material. The first anime on Japanese TV was in anthology show Three Tales (Mitsu no Hanashi, 1960.) The first anime series on Japanese TV was Otogi Production’s Instant History (Otogi Manga Calendar, 1961.) Astro Boy (Tetsuwan Atom, 1963) was the first fully animated Japanese TV series, and also the first anime series with continuing characters and developing storylines, on Japanese TV.


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