It’s been 8 years since I first opened Takuto’s Anime Cafe!! 🥳 I’ve had all kinds of amazing opportunities throughout this time, including my latest ARC review for Bai Cha’s My Cat Hates Me that just went up. Never would I have guessed that I’d have more online friends than in-person ones, but it’s true—I am nothing without this community that has raised me and continued to teach me new things since I was a clueless sophomore in high school. Now I’m in my second and final year of grad school. I know, I can’t believe it either. Life comes at you fast, doesn’t it?
I owe you all so, so much more than this small pop-in, but I promise you that I’m still the same old Taku who’d rather catch up watching Call of the Night and Psycho Pass 3 instead of going out to the bars. (Yes, those are my latest watches. Both good ones, too!)
I hope you are all well, and I’ll try and make a big return to regular blogging once I finish school! In the meantime, it’ll be sporadic posts with the occasionally scheduled YouTube vid. We just hit 1k subs on the channel by the way!!! I was thinking of fun ways to celebrate—maybe a Q&A? We’re also getting super close to 800 cafe-goers. It’d be pretty cool to hit 800 during my 8th year, ya know?
Anyway, THANK YOU for all the support throughout the years, and special love to my WP aniblogger friends. 💙 I’ll try and stop in more often. ‘Til next time!
Between all the EVERYDAY EVA posts and BTS PTD ON STAGE in Seoul tweets, GKIDS has made another surprising move in the licensing and distribution world of anime.
Just today they announced they announced the acquisition of 4 films by Makoto Shinkai: Voices of a Distant Star, The Place Promised in Our Early Days, 5 Centimeters Per Second, and Children Who Chase Lost Voices. This means that all of Shinkai’s major films except for Your Name. (Funimation) and The Garden of Words (Sentai Filmworks) have been licensed by GKIDS. And all of them will be DUBBED on Blu-ray!
“We are thrilled to represent these vital early films from Makoto Shinkai,” said GKIDS’ President David Jesteadt. “They display the astounding visuals and emotional stories of longing and human connection that have made him one of the most exciting and important directors in animation today, and we look forward to reintroducing them to fans old and new.”
I’m still reeling from this announcement. WOW. That means they currently release:
All Studio Ghibli titles
Makoto Shinkai (minus those two)
Mamoru Hosoda (split w/Funi)
Satoshi Kon (split w/ ElevenArts)
Masaaki Yuasa (all?)
Hideaki Anno’s NGE & EOE 🤯
Given their current trajectory, I predict that in the next couple years, GKIDS will probably announce acquisition for:
Anno’s Rebuild of Evangelion
Hosoda’s first four films (from Funi)
Annnd, if I can strike out on a limb:
Mamoru Oshii’s Ghost in the Shell
Kenji Kamiyama’s GitS SAC
Regardless of what they manage to acquire, I’m amazed GKIDS is always so thorough and elegant about the whole process. I imagine licensing wars get ugly between companies, so for them to proceed with such refined marketing, wide access theatrical screenings, & affordable physical releases is beyond me.
Now, I know next to nothing about how the industry works. But what I DO know is that GKIDS is tackling classic and popular anime titles, most of which were in license purgatory or without an official Blu-ray release for the longest time. Plus they DUB everything. 😩👏
Dubbing is so important because it helps with global outreach. If you like dubs, awesome! Otherwise, you get you get your fave anime films in hi-def. In retrospect, the fact that they acquired BOTH dubs for Neon Genesis Evangelion shows just how much the fans matter to them.
I foresee GKIDS acquiring most if not all of the major works of big-name anime directors even from other companies that have already released their stuff. Discotek and Sentai only just recently put out their Shinkai Blu-rays—Funi’s hold on Hosoda’s catalog is probably next.
And I think this is a great thing. It means less work their team had to do in terms of lending dubs to releases. Plus, Funi is one of those companies that just produces quality work, especially when it comes to art-house films. 👏
The benefit of operating and releasing all of these films under one label also makes it easier for fans like myself to own it all in nice, consistent packaging. As a collector, I couldn’t be happier with what GKIDS is doing for the anime industry right now!
I’ve been a Shinkai fan for as long as I’ve been watching anime, so I just had to share this HUGE news on the blog. Absolutely incredible. I’ve written over 10k words on his works, and to see them all officially licensed now makes my heart so full. Here, have a smiling Kiki 🙂
What are your thoughts on GKIDS and this license announcement? Do you enjoy Shinkai films as much as I do? Please feel free to share any thoughts in the comments below!