Surely, you’ve noticed? Recently, in Japan, there’s a glut of movies based on manga and anime. There must be a reason for this. There most certainly is.
It is a rather simple and somewhat obvious reason. But here, let Beat Takeshi tell it. Beat Takeshi, of course, is a famed comedian, actor and filmmaker — among many other things. He’s a man of multiple talents! His movies, such as Sonatine, Hana-bi and Beyond Outrage, are fantastic.
As noted recently on Yahoo! News Japan, during the Tokyo Film Festival, Takeshi was asked why there are now so many movies based on manga and anime.
“It’s because if you make a manga into a movie, people will go see it,” Takeshi explained bluntly. “That’s it. Movie companies don’t have the courage to spend money on unknown scripts.”
They have a built-in audience, and they’re comparatively low risk — or rather, lower risk. Even if that risk can be alienating fans. The odds of making your money back are greater than finding the next big thing. This dynamic explains the glut of live-action anime and manga movies.
This isn’t true only in Japan but in Hollywood too, as seen with the numerous comic book movies or the endless reboots.
Good movies are good movies, whether they are based on anime, comics, video games or whatever. But it’s in those unknown scripts that you find some truly memorable films.