Sony Considers Developing an Animator Training Academy and Improve Production

Sony is currently one of the biggest companies in the anime industry, with media company Aniplex and streaming service Crunchyroll under its wing. On May 23, 2024, Sony Group Corp. held its Sony Group Management Policy Meeting overnight and announced plans to boost its stronghold in the anime industry.

Kenichiro Yoshida (Sony CEO)
Kenichiro Yoshida (Sony’s CEO) | Source: Sony

Animation has grown from what used to be a niche genre to a world-class form of entertainment. We want to contribute to the industry.

(Kenichiro Yoshida, Sony CEO)

One thing is clear- the Japanese giant intends to take over the anime market completely. During the online briefing, while discussing overseas expansion, the company announced that Crunchyroll had surpassed 13 million subscribers.

Sony also announced that they are “considering the establishment of an academy to train overseas animation creators, with Aniplex and Crunchyroll at its core, in cooperation with the industry.” They intend to train new animators worldwide, which will help create the demand for more animators worldwide, not just people in Japan, to join the anime industry, as there is a severe shortage of labor.

Anime Canvas
AnimeCanvas Preview | Source: Sony Group Policy Meeting YouTube Stream

The company also confirmed that it plans to leverage advanced technologies, including artificial intelligence, and is working on a new animation-creation software platform named AnimeCanvas. This platform, developed in partnership with Sony Group engineers, is set to revolutionize content production, increasing efficiency and speed.

Initially, the software will be utilized internally, including at Aniplex’s production studios, A-1 Pictures, and CloverWorks. Eventually, it will be offered to other studios, too. The goal is to boost production, improve the quality of work, and make anime more globalized. The company also aims to develop new technologies, including 3D content, to enhance its offerings.

Sony’s CEO, Kenichiro Yoshida, has outlined a bold long-term vision for the company, aiming to expand its content user base—including music, games, and movies—to 1 billion people, around six times the current user base. Since Sony acquired Crunchyroll, they have been focusing on expanding the streaming service everywhere with potential.

Anime only makes up for a little when you look at the bigger picture of the Sony business, but it is still one of the vital growth factors. According to Crunchyroll, the anime industry will have more than 800 million fans globally by 2025 outside China and Japan, which will prove highly beneficial for Sony’s overall growth.


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