Tatsunoko Production

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Tatsunoko Production
Kabushiki gaisha
Industry Animation studio, planning and production
Founded October 19, 1962; 54 years ago (1962-10-19)[1]
Founder Tatsuo Yoshida
Kenji Yoshida
Ippei Kuri
Headquarters Musashino, Tokyo, Japan
Products Anime
Owner Nippon Television (54.3%)
Takara Tomy (20.0%)
Horipro (13.5%)
Production I.G (11.2%)
Number of employees
59 (April 1, 2015)
Divisions I.G Tatsunoko 1987–1993
Website tatsunoko.co.jp/english

Tatsunoko Production Company (株式会社タツノコプロ Kabushiki gaisha Tatsunoko Puro?), previously known as Kabushiki gaisha Tatsunoko Purodakushon (株式会社竜の子プロダクション?) and often shortened to Tatsunoko Pro (竜の子プロ or タツノコプロ Tatsunoko Puro?), is a Japanese animation company. It was founded in October 1962 by anime pioneer Tatsuo Yoshida and his brothers, Kenji and Toyoharu (pen name "Ippei Kuri").[2] The studio's name has a double meaning in Japanese: "Tatsu's child" (Tatsu is a nickname for Tatsuo) and "sea dragon", the inspiration for its seahorse logo.[2][3] Tatsunoko's headquarters are in Musashino, Tokyo.[1]

History[edit]

The studio's first production was the 1965 TV series Space Ace.[citation needed] Since then many figures in the anime industry have worked with Tatsunoko, including Mizuho Nishikubo, Hiroshi Sasagawa, Koichi Mashimo, Katsuhisa Yamada, Hideaki Anno (Tatsunoko provided animation work on the Neon Genesis Evangelion TV series), and Kazuo Yamazaki.[citation needed] Sasagawa is notable for bringing his fondness for comedy animation to the forefront in Tatsunoko series such as the Time Bokan (1975) franchise.[4] The company later licensed Macross to Harmony Gold, who then produced Robotech.[citation needed]

Takara acquired Tatsunoko on June 3, 2005 after purchasing an 88 percent stake and made the company a subsidiary.[5] Production I.G was established in 1987 as I.G. Tatsunoko, a branch for the production of Zillion led by Mitsuhisa Ishikawa.[6][7][8]

In 2009, Tatsunoko announced that it would collaborate with Marvel Comics on a joint television project and other ventures.[9] IG Port announced on June 2, 2010 that its subsidiary, Production I.G, had purchased an 11.2 percent stake in Tatsunoko. Production I.G president Mitsuhisa Ishikawa became a part-time director of the studio.[10]

Talent agency Horipro announced on February 23, 2013 that it had acquired a 13.5 percent stake in Tatsunoko.[11] At Anime Expo 2013, Sentai Filmworks announced a deal to license and release some of Tatsunoko's titles, including Gatchaman and Casshan.[12] Nippon Television announced on January 29, 2014 that it had purchased a 54.3 percent stake in Tatsunoko and adopted the company as its subsidiary.[13][14][15]

Main Productions[edit]

1960s[edit]

Title Series Director Broadcast Network(s) Year(s) Notes
Space Ace (Uchuu Ace) Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV May 8th, 1965–April 28th, 1966 Tatsunoko's first ever animated TV serial; adapted from the original manga by Tatsuo Yoshida that was serialized in Shueisha's Shonen Book magazine
Mach Go Go Go (Speed Racer) (original) Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV April 2nd, 1967–March 31st, 1968 Tatsunoko's first animated TV serial to be produced in color; adapted from the original manga by Tatsuo Yoshida that was serialized in Shueisha's Shonen Book magazine
Oraa Guzura Dado (original) Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 7th, 1967-September 25th, 1968
Dokachin the Primitive Boy (or simply, "Dokachin") Seitarō Hara, Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 2nd, 1968–March 26th, 1969
Kurenai Sanshiro Ippei Kuri Fuji TV April 2nd-September 24th, 1969 Adapted from two manga serials by Tatsuo Yoshida that were serialized in Shueisha's Shonen Book from 1961 to 1962, and Shogakukan's Weekly Shonen Sunday and Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump from 1968 to 1969
Hakushon Daimaō Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 5th, 1969–September 27th, 1970 Adapted into Bob in a Bottle by Saban Entertainment in 1992

1970s[edit]

Title Series Director Broadcast Network(s) Year(s) Notes
Honeybee Hutch (Mitsubachi Monogatari Minashigo Hacchiand La Abeja Hutch) Ippei Kuri Fuji TV April 7th, 1970–September 8th, 1971
Inakappe Taisho Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 4th, 1970–September 24th, 1972 Adapted from the manga by Noboru Kawasaki, which was serialized in Shogakukan's Gakkushu Zasshi educational magazines for Japanese schoolchildren
Kabatotto Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV January 1st, 1971–September 30th, 1972
Animentari Ketsudan Ippei Kuri Nippon TV April 3rd-September 25th, 1971 Dramatic adaptation of the Japanese Empire's role in the Second World War
Mokku of the Oak Tree Seitaro Hara Fuji TV January 4th, 1972-January 1st, 1973 Adaptation of Italian novelist Carlo Collodi's 1881 novel, The Adventures of Pinocchio
Science Ninja Team Gatchaman Hisayuki Toriumi Fuji TV October 1st, 1972-September 29th, 1974 Adapted for western audiences by Sandy Frank into Battle of the Planets in 1978, and G-Force: Guardians of Space in 1986, and by Saban Entertainment into Eagle Riders in 1996
Tamagon the Counselor Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV 1972–1973
Kerokko Demetan Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV January 2nd-September 25th, 1973 Adapted for western audiences by Harmony Gold USA as an animated film The Brave Frog in 1985
Neo Human Casshan Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 2nd, 1973–June 25th, 1974 A notable source of inspiration for Keiji Inafune who went to create the Mega Man franchise for Capcom
New Honeybee Hutch Shotaro Hara NET April 4th-September 27th, 1974 Sequel to 1970's Honeybee Hutch
Hurricane Polymar Tsuneo Ninomiya NET October 4th, 1974-March 28th, 1975
Tentomushi no Uta Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 6th, 1974-September 26th, 1976 Adapted from Noboru Kawasaki's manga of the same name that was serialized in Shogakukan's Gakkushu Zasshi educational magazines from 1973 to 1975
Space Knight Tekkaman Hiroshi Sasagawa NET July 2nd-December 24th, 1975
Time Bokan Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 4th, 1975-December 25th, 1976 First entry in Tatsunoko's Time Bokan Series
Gowapper 5 Godam Hisayuki Toriumi ABC April 4th-December 29th, 1976
Paul's Miraculous Adventure Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 3rd, 1976-September 11th, 1977
The Time Bokan Series: Yatterman Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV January 1st, 1977-January 27th, 1979 Second installment of the Time Bokan Series
Ippatsu Kanta-kun Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV September 18th, 1977-September 24th, 1978 First of Tatsuo Yoshida's original works to be produced posthumously; he died of liver cancer on September 5th, 1977, 13 days before the first episode aired
Temple the Balloonist Seitaro Hara Fuji TV October 1st, 1977-March 25th, 1978 Second and last of Tatsuo Yoshida's original works to be produced posthumously
Tobidase! Machine Hiryuu ??? Tokyo 12 Broadcasting October 5th, 1977-March 29th, 1978 First and only one of Tatsunoko's original works to be co-produced with Toei Animation, one of their rivals within the anime industry
Science Ninja Team Gatchaman II Hisauki Toriumi, Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV October 1st, 1978-September 23rd, 1979 Sequel to 1972's Science Ninja Team Gatchaman; adapted into Eagle Riders by Saban Entertainment in 1996; First of Tatsunoko's works to be produced by Kenji Yoshida
The Time Bokan Series: Zenderman Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV February 3rd, 1979-January 26th, 1980 Third installment of the Time Bokan Series
Science Ninja Team Gatchaman Fighter Hisayuki Toriumi Fuji TV October 7th, 1979-August 31st, 1980 Direct sequel to 1978's Science Ninja Team Gatchaman II; final installment in the Gatchaman franchise until 1994 OVA
Gordian Warrior Shigeru Yanagawa Tokyo 12 Broadcasting October 7th, 1979-February 27th, 1981
Ashinaga Ojisan ??? Fuji TV October 10th, 1979 TV Special; adapted from Jean Webster's 1912 novel, Daddy-Long-Legs

1980s[edit]

Title Series Director Broadcast Network(s) Year(s) Notes
Cheerful Dwarves of the Forest: Belfy and Lillabit Masayuki Hayashi Tokyo 12 Broadcasting January 7th-July 7th, 1980 Adapted by Saban Entertainment into The Littl' Bits, which ran on Nick Jr. from 1991 to 1995
The Time Bokan Series: Time Patrol Team Otasukeman Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV February 2nd, 1980-January 31st, 1981 Fourth installment of the Time Bokan Series
Dashing Warrior Muteking Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV September 7th, 1980-September 27th, 1981
The Time Bokan Series: Yattodetaman Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV February 7th, 1981-February 6th, 1982 Fifth installment of the Time Bokan Series
Golden Warrior Gold Lightan Kōichi Mashimo Tokyo 12 Broadcasting March 1st, 1981-February 18th, 1982
Animated Parent and Child Theater Masakazu Higuchi TV Tokyo October 1st, 1981-March 29th, 1982 Tatsunoko's first anime to adapt stories from the Bible; adapted by CBN into Superbook in 1982
Dash Kappei Masayuki Hayashi, Seitaro Hara Fuji TV October 4th, 1981-December 26th, 1982 Adapted from the manga by Noboru Rokuda, which was serialized in Shogakukan's Weekly Shonen Sunday manga magazine from November 1979 to November 1982
The Time Bokan Series: Gyakuten! Ippatsuman Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV February 13th, 1982-March 26th, 1983 Sixth installment of the Time Bokan Series
Time Classroom: The Adventures of the Flying House Masakazu Higuchi, Mineo Fuji TV Tokyo April 5th 1982-March 28th, 1983 Second installment of the Animated Parent and Child Theater Trilogy; adapted by CBN into The Flying House in 1984
Future Police Urashiman Kōichi Mashimo Fuji TV January 9th-December 24th, 1983 Adapted from the manga by Hirohisa Soda and Noboru Akashi, which was serialized in Akita Shoten's Weekly Shonen Champion manga magazines
PC Travel Detectives Masakazu Higuchi TV Tokyo April 4th-September 25th, 1983 Third installment of the Animated Parent and Child Theater Trilogy; adaped by CBN into Superbook: Series 2 in 1984
The Time Bokan Series: Itadakiman Hiroshi Sasagawa Fuji TV April 9th-September 24th, 1983 Seventh and final installment of the Time Bokan Series; resumed in 2000 with Kaito Kiramekiman
Genesis Climber MOSPEADA Katsuhisa Yamada Fuji TV October 2nd, 1983-March 23rd, 1984 Adapted by Harmony Gold USA as Robotech: The New Generation in 1985
Starzan S Hidehito Ueda Fuji TV January 7th-August 25th, 1984 Adapted from an original concept by Hiroshi Sasagawa
Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross Yasuo Hasegawa MBS April 15th-September 30th, 1984 Adapted by Harmony Gold USA into Robotech: The Masters in 1985
Yoroshiku Mechadoc Hidehito Ueda Fuji TV September 1st, 1984-March 30th, 1985 Adapted from the manga of the same name by Ryuji Tsugihara, which was serialized in Shueisha's Weekly Shonen Jump manga magazine from November 1982 to March 1985
Fire of Alpen Rose: Judy and Randy Hidehito Ueda Fuji TV April 6th-October 5th, 1985 Adapted from the manga, Alpen Rose, by Michiyo Akaishi, which was serialized in Shogakukan's Ciao manga magazine for female readers from April 1983 to May 1986
Showa Era Idiot Story Book: Most Refined Hidehito Ueda TV Asahi October 7th, 1985-March 24th, 1986 Adapted from the manga of the same name by Yuu Azuki, which was serialized in Shueisha's Margaret manga magazine for female readers from 1985 to 1987
The Legend of Hikari Tomomi Mochizuki ABC May 3rd-September 20th, 1986 Adapted from the manga of the same name by Izumi Aso, which was serialized in Shueisha's Ribon manga magazine for female readers from 1985 to December 1988
Doteraman Shinya Sadamitsu NTV October 14th, 1986-February 24th, 1987 Tatsunoko's first TV anime to be broadcast on NTV in 15 years since Animentary Ketsudan
Red Photon Zillion Akira Watanabe NTV April 12th-December 13th, 1987 After the production of the anime, Tatsunoko Production and Mitsuhisa Ishikawa, the producer of Zillion, established IG Tatsunoko (which later became Production I.G) to obstruct the dispersing of the excellent staffs of Tatsunoko branch which had done actual production. Therefore, Zillion is considered to be Production I.G's first work. Also co-produced by Sega, which had a fine relationship with Tatsunoko until they purchased rival studio TMS in 1992.
Oraa Guzura Dado Hiroshi Sasagawa TV Tokyo October 12th, 1987-September 20th, 1988 Color remake of the 1967 series
Legend of Heavenly Sphere Shurato Toshihiko Nishikubo TV Tokyo April 6th, 1989-January 18th, 1990 Adapted from the manga of the same name by Hiroshi Kawamoto, which was serialized in Shonen Gahosha's Shonen King manga magazine from February to September 1988
Konchū Monogatari: Minashigo Hutch Iku Suzuki NTV July 21st, 1989-August 31st, 1990 Modern remake of the 1970 anime Honeybee Hutch

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1990s[edit]

2000s[edit]

2010s[edit]

Co-productions[edit]

Anime studios made by former animators[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Tatsunoko Pro". Tatsunoko.co.jp. Retrieved 2016-01-07. 
  2. ^ a b Jorge Khoury (2008-05-11). "GATCHAMAN! The story of Tatsuo Yoshida and his greatest creation". Comic Book Resources. Retrieved 2017-01-15. 
  3. ^ "'Speed Racer': drawing on an anime legend". The Japan Times. 2008-07-03. Retrieved 2008-08-06. 
  4. ^ AWN. "Anime Reviews: Stand Alone with Bokan & The Third | AWN | Animation World Network". Mag.awn.com. Retrieved 2013-10-02. [dead link]
  5. ^ "Takara acquires animation studio". The Japan Times. 2005-07-03. Retrieved 2015-12-17. 
  6. ^ "石川社長が20年を語る 「プロダクション I.G 創立20周年記念展」開催中" (in Japanese). mycom.co.jp. 2007-12-28. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  7. ^ "第25回 株式会社プロダクション I.G代表取締役社長 石川光久-その2-悔しさから独立、フリーに" (in Japanese). CodeZine. 2008-02-08. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  8. ^ "Studio 2 Part 01: Kazuchika Kise and the birth of Studio 2". Production I.G. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  9. ^ "Report: Tatsunoko, Marvel Aim for Joint TV Anime in 3 Years – News". Anime News Network. 2009-02-24. Retrieved 2013-10-02. 
  10. ^ "Production I.G to Acquire 11.2% Stake in Tatsunoko". Anime News Network. 2010-06-01. Retrieved 2010-06-04. 
  11. ^ "HoriPro Agency Acquires Stake in Anime Studio Tatsunoko – News". Anime News Network. 2013-02-12. Retrieved 2013-10-02. 
  12. ^ "Sentai Filmworks Signs Deal with Tatsunoko Production (Updated) - News". Anime News Network. 2013-07-04. Retrieved 2013-10-02. 
  13. ^ "NTV Buys 54.3% Stake in Anime Studio Tatsunoko Production". Anime News Network. 2014-01-29. Retrieved 2014-01-29. 
  14. ^ "Tomy to sell Tatsunoko Production to TV station". Nikkei. 2014-01-29. Retrieved 2015-01-09. 
  15. ^ "Nippon TV Acquires Shares of TATSUNOKO PRODUCTION Co., Ltd.". Nippon Television. 2014-01-29. Retrieved 2014-02-14. 

External links[edit]