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Several Anime Studios Are Locked Down Due to Covid-19 Infections

Several Anime Studios Are Locked Down Due to Covid-19 Infections

Following the latest wave of Covid-19 infections that has seen several anime and manga industry personalities hospitalized, some industry professionals such as Slayers and Shakugan no Shana director Takashi Watanabe and an animator that has worked on multiple seasons of My Hero Academia have come out on Twitter to speak against the prevailing cases of infections in the industry.

WHAT INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS HAVE TO SAY

Takashi Watanabe stated that at least one animation studio has gone on lockdown due to a COVID cluster. Watanabe stated that there was an “implicit gag order” but he had heard about the studio closure. He also added that he thought the information should have been made available and that it’s “dangerous waters” to not disclose the outbreak.

Based on the director’s post on Twitter, he doesn’t know if he has been exposed to the virus via contact with employers from the affected studios. In his Twitter post, he also questioned why the animation industry is continuing despite the pandemic.

Expressing fear for the industry and showing care for his colleagues, Watanabe said, “Will they not understand unless animation workers start dying one after another? Or is it the workers’ responsibilities because they’re often freelancers? Is the company itself not responsible”.

An animator also came out to give his own account of events. The animator under the name @yamaaan222 reported they know about “five different studios” that have closed due to infections but did not mention which ones. They pondered if these closures are due to clusters forming in the industry or not.

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Outside the anime scene, a designer also responded to Watanabe’s Tweet, saying that there are “two companies” that he knows of that are doing the same thing, stating that it is less of an anime industry issue and more of a widespread one throughout businesses in Japan.

CLOSED STUDIOS AND SICK CELEBS

In the last couple of weeks, several voice actors such as those involved in The Idolm@ster SideM idol game franchise, voice actors Rina HidakaKento HamaKENNShinichiro MikiChiharu SawashiroHiroyuki Yoshino, and Yuko Sanpei, TV personality Makoto NonomuraDISH// vocalist Takumi Kitamura, manga artist Tomohiro Hashimoto, and seven members of AKB48 have all been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Are you struck by this news? Wish Japan the best in their fight fending off COVID. Much of Japan is currently under a state of emergency.

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