Shaft (company)

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Shaft, Inc.
Native name
Kabushikigaisha Shafuto
Animation studio
Industry Japanese animation
Genre Various
Founded September 1, 1975; 41 years ago (1975-09-01)
Founder Hiroshi Wakao
Headquarters 1-29-15 Kami-Igusa, Suginami, Tokyo, Japan
Area served
Key people
Mitsutoshi Kubota (President)
Akiyuki Shinbo (Executive director)
Products Hidamari Sketch
Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Monogatari (series)
March Comes in like a Lion

Shaft, Inc. (株式会社シャフト?, Kabushikigaisha Shafuto) is a Japanese animation studio founded on September 1, 1975 by Hiroshi Wakao. In 2005 they began working exclusively with the director Akiyuki Shinbo, who is best known for his unique use of gags, references, and avant garde cinematography notably in Pani Poni Dash!, Maria Holic, Sayonara Zetsubō Sensei, Hidamari Sketch, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, and Bakemonogatari.


Shaft was founded on September 1, 1975 by Hiroshi Wakao, who previously worked at Mushi Pro. The company was founded to paint the animation but later worked on animation production as a subcontractor. They were able to produce their own first original series, Yume kara, Samenai (夢から、さめない?, Yume kara, Samenai) in 1987.

In 2000, after Shaft cooperated with Gainax to produce a DVD special of remastered Gunbuster, they were in joint production with Gainax to produce Mahoromatic, This Ugly and Beautiful World, and He is My Master. After Hiroshi Wakao's retirement in 2004, Kubota Mitsutoshi has become Shaft's representative director. Their painting group has also been downsized in order to strengthen their digital group. Since the joint works with Gainax, Shaft focused their efforts on adaptations of acclaimed manga and light novels until 2011 when they released their first original anime series in a decade, Puella Magi Madoka Magica.


Since 2004, Akiyuki Shinbō, Tatsuya Oishi and Shin Ōnuma have participated in most of Shaft's productions, starting with Tsukuyomi: Moon Phase. The studio is unique due to their use of gags and references to other anime through writing on a classroom chalkboard or any available empty space in the background. The studio is also known for the use of various animation styles in a single series, changes in art style, a characteristic head tilt, abstract background designs, and use of unusual music for the opening sequences of their shows.

Produced series[edit]

Anime television series[edit]

Title Year(s) Director(s) Based on Note(s)
Juuni Senshi Bakuretsu Eto Ranger 1995–1996 Kunitoshi Okajima Original
Dotto! Koni-chan 2000–2001 Shinichi Watanabe Original
Mahoromatic 2001–2002 Hiroyuki Yamaga Manga Joint production with Gainax
Mahoromatic: Automatic Maiden 2002–2003 Hiroyuki Yamaga Manga
G-On Riders 2002 Shinichiro Kimura Original Joint production with TNK
Popotan 2003 Shinichiro Kimura Visual novel
This Ugly yet Beautiful World 2004 Shouji Saeki Original Joint production with Gainax
Tsukuyomi: Moon Phase 2004–2005 Akiyuki Shinbo Manga
He Is My Master 2005 Shouji Saeki Manga Joint production with Gainax
Pani Poni 2005 Shin Ōnuma Manga
Rec 2006 Ryūtarō Nakamura Manga
Hidamari Sketch 2007 Akiyuki Shinbo
Ryōki Kamitsubo
Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei 2007 Akiyuki Shinbo Manga
Ef: A Tale of Memories 2007 Shin Ōnuma Visual novel
(Zoku) Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei 2008 Akiyuki Shinbo Manga
Hidamari Sketch × 365 2008
Ef: A Tale of Melodies 2008 Shin Ōnuma Visual novel
Maria Holic 2009 Akiyuki Shinbo Manga
Natsu no Arashi! 2009 Manga
Bakemonogatari 2009 Light novel
(Zan) Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei 2009 Manga
Natsu no Arashi! Akinai-chū 2009
Hidamari Sketch × Hoshimittsu 2010
Dance in the Vampire Bund 2010 Akiyuki Shinbo
Masahiro Sonoda
Arakawa Under the Bridge 2010 Akiyuki Shinbo
Arakawa Under the Bridge x Bridge 2010
And Yet the Town Moves 2010
Puella Magi Madoka Magica 2011 Original
Maria†Holic: Alive 2011 Manga
Ground Control to Psychoelectric Girl 2011 Light novel
Nisemonogatari 2012 Light novel
Hidamari Sketch × Honeycomb 2012 Manga
Nekomonogatari (kuro) 2012 Tomoyuki Itamura Light novel
Sasami-san@Ganbaranai 2013 Light novel
Monogatari Series Second Season 2013 Akiyuki Shinbo
Tomoyuki Itamura
Light novel
Nisekoi 2014 Naoyuki Tatsuwa
Akiyuki Shinbo
Mekakucity Actors 2014 Yūki Yase
Akiyuki Shinbo
Hanamonogatari 2014 Tomoyuki Itamura
Tsukimonogatari 2014 Tomoyuki Itamura
Gourmet Girl Graffiti 2015 Naoyuki Tatsuwa
Akiyuki Shinbo
Nisekoi: 2015 Manga
Owarimonogatari 2015 Tomoyuki Itamura Light novel
March Comes in like a Lion 2016 Kenjirō Okada
Akiyuki Shinbo
Owarimonogatari Second Season 2017 Light novel
March Comes in like a Lion Second Season 2017 Manga
Fate/Extra Last Encore 2018 Yukihiro Miyamoto
Akiyuki Shinbo

Theatrical films[edit]

Year Title Director(s) Genre Note(s)
2007 Kino's Journey: Country of Illness -For You- Ryūtarō Nakamura Adventure, Fantasy, SF
2011 Mahō Sensei Negima! Anime Final Akiyuki Shinbo Joint production with Studio Pastoral
2012 Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Beginnings Akiyuki Shinbo
Yukihiro Miyamoto
Magical girl, Dark fantasy, Drama
2012 Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Eternal Akiyuki Shinbo
Yukihiro Miyamoto
Magical girl, Dark fantasy, Drama
2013 Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion Yukihiro Miyamoto
Akiyuki Shinbo
Magical girl, Dark fantasy, Tragedy
2016 Kizumonogatari Part 1: Tekketsu Tatsuya Oishi
Akiyuki Shinbo
Vampire, Horror
2016 Kizumonogatari Part 2: Nekketsu Tatsuya Oishi
Akiyuki Shinbo
Vampire, Horror
2017 Kizumonogatari Part 3: Reiketsu Tatsuya Oishi
Akiyuki Shinbo
Vampire, Horror
2017 Fireworks, Should We See It from the Side or the Bottom? Nobuyuki Takeuchi
Akiyuki Shinbo


Year Title Director(s) Notes
1987 Yume kara, Samenai Osamu Inoue
2002 Arcade Gamer Fubuki Yuji Mutoh
2006 Mahō Sensei Negima!: Spring (Haru) Akiyuki Shinbo
Shin Onuma
2006 Mahō Sensei Negima!: Summer (Natsu) Akiyuki Shinbo
Shin Onuma
2008 Mahō Sensei Negima!: Shiroki Tsubasa Ala Alba Akiyuki Shinbo Joint production with Studio Pastoral
2008 (Goku) Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei Akiyuki Shinbo
2009 Mahō Sensei Negima!: Mō Hitotsu no Sekai Akiyuki Shinbo Joint production with Studio Pastoral
2009 (Zan) Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei Bangaichi Akiyuki Shinbo
2011 Katte ni Kaizō Akiyuki Shinbo
2013 Hidamari Sketch: Sae & Hiro's Graduation Arc Akiyuki Shinbo
2016 Kubikiri Cycle Yuki Yase

Other works[edit]

North American productions[edit]


  1. ^ "Madoka Magica's SHAFT Launches Prism Nana Project Anime". Anime News Network. August 1, 2012. Retrieved 28 March 2016. 
  2. ^ "Magical Suite Prism Nana Slot Machine Shown in Video". Anime News Network. March 24, 2013. Retrieved 28 March 2016. 
  3. ^ Super Smash Bros. official channel (10 June 2014). 【スマブラ3DS・WiiU】 光の女神. YouTube. Retrieved 28 March 2016. 


  • "Negima!?". (November 2006) Newtype USA. p. 10.

External links[edit]