Sony And Crunchyroll Considering To Create An International Academy To Train Overseas Animators With Industry Professionals

While discussing the topic of overseas expansion, the company announced that Crunchyroll had surpassed 13 million subscribers.

Sony Entertainment

On May 23rd, Sony conducted an online briefing to outline its management strategy for the 2024 fiscal year. During the session, Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida, along with other key executives, discussed upcoming plans and initiatives.

While discussing the topic of overseas expansion, the company announced that Crunchyroll had surpassed 13 million subscribers.

At the time of Sony’s acquisition in 2021, Crunchyroll had 5 million members. This number skyrocketed to over 12 million within two years, largely due to the exclusive streaming of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba TV anime.

Sony’s Aniplex division is set to capitalize on its strengths in planning, production, distribution, global expansion, and secondary use of anime content by shifting its focus to talent development. In the not-so distant future, the company intends to focus on training, for example, “considering the establishment of an academy to train overseas animation creators, with Aniplex and Crunchyroll at its core, in cooperation with the industry”.

This will help create the demand for more animators around the world to work in the industry and not just restrict it to people in Japan.

Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida's Annual Pay Fell to $3.67M

(Kenichiro Yoshida, Sony CEO)

Furthermore, they announced the creation of their proprietary animation production software, “AnimeCanvas,” aimed at enhancing production efficiency.

The software is being developed in partnership with Sony Group engineers. Initially, it will be utilized internally, including at Aniplex’s production studios, A-1 Pictures, and CloverWorks. There are plans to eventually offer it to studios owned by others as well.

By developing this software in-house, the company aims to boost production environments and efficiency, while also improving the overall quality of their work.

Whether this will ease the burden on animators is yet to be confirmed, but this is a HUGE step by Sony and Crunchyroll to make anime even more globalized than what it already is.

About Crunchyroll:

Crunchyroll offers the largest anime streaming service in the world, and is one of the top 10 streaming companies in the U.S.

It is an American subscription video-on-demand over-the-top streaming service owned by Sony Group Corporation.

The service primarily distributes films and television series produced by East Asian media, including anime, J-Dramas, K-Dramas and other live action stuff and is headquartered in San Francisco, California.

It offers over 1,000 anime shows, more than 200 East Asian dramas in over 15 languages, and around 80 manga titles as Crunchyroll Manga, although the number of available shows varies by country due to licensing restrictions.

Crunchyroll passed one million paid subscribers in February 2017, and has over 10 million paid subscribers as of 2022.

Source: Yahoo! Japan