We live in an age of excess and variety when it comes to anime. Every new season sees no less than 30 new shows debuting, and they are all competing for your attention. This quantity approach can lead to niche series finding an audience, like Land of the Lustrous and Made in Abyss.
However, there is a large segment of fans that feel that too much anime is being made. The arguments include the increasing amount of generic series, burnout, and declining animation quality as animators are stretched thin.
The complaint is largely contained to fans – until now. Seiji Mizushima is a respected director that worked on Fullmetal Alchemist and Mobile Suit Gundam 00. Recently, he shared that the industry would improve if the number of anime was cut in half.
— 水島 精二 (@oichanmusi) June 24, 2018
“I don’t think anyone would be worse off if the amount of anime getting made was cut in half. Some directors are even handling two shows in the same season, which is an incredibly tough schedule. There’s just an excess supply of content, and there are never enough people in the studio to get work done. What is the point in making so much anime? It’d be better to do a proper job of making series one by one.”
Mizushima argues that there isn’t enough staff to properly work on all the shows that are being green-lit. This contributes to the high burnout rate animators have – 80% of animators quit within three years due to the high workload and low pay. Compounding the issue is that nearly every anime studio is fully booked until 2020 with projects.
People seem to agree that lessening the number of projects may help alleviate some of the production issues animators face. However, will they agree on which shows to cut out?