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Japan pushes anime for Indian kids

The Japanese animation industry is pitching in a big way to get into the Indian drawing rooms,as it competes with American animation companies which produce cartoons such as the Tom and Jerry

Written by Shubhajit Roy | New Delhi |
January 2, 2012 3:58:09 am

The Japanese animation industry is pitching in a big way to get into the Indian drawing rooms,as it competes with American animation companies which produce cartoons such as the Tom and Jerry.

Japan wants Indian children to watch Sazae-san,Dokaben,Inayusha and other popular animation characters. And Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda took up the matter with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during their talks last week. The joint statement issued after their meeting on Wednesday said the two PMs expressed their expectation that the “strengthening of cooperation in creative industries… animation and manga” (among other things) would further promote and deepen mutual understanding of the two countries. Addressing the strategic community in Delhi,organised by the Indian Council for World Affairs on Wednesday,Noda said,“Adults may be unaware of it,but I understand that Japanese Anime is quite popular here.”

India happens to be one of the biggest growing markets in the world for the animation industry. Japan exports between 40 and 70 works of animation films to India.

Eiji Takahashi,vice-secretary general of the Association of Japanese Animations,told The Indian Express,“India is a major destination,and has started developing in the last 10 years. But the potential has not been utilised fully yet.”

Last year in March,the Japanese animation industry had held a fest in Mumbai,co-organised by Japan’s Trade ministry and Japan Foundation. “The Japan government wants to push for its lifestyle contents,under the slogan of ‘Cool Japan’. Along with movies,games,fashion,cuisine,the Japanese animation is one of the key contents,” Takahashi said. This would be one of the key themes as both sides celebrate the 60th year of India-Japan diplomatic relations in 2012.

Toei animation,one of the Japanese animation companies,is quite interested in entering the Japanese market,Takahashi informed. According to Takahashi,the Japanese companies ensure quality dubbing in Hindi. “They are also mindful of the religious and cultural sensitivities while airing animation in India,” he said.

In certain countries Japan,the animation companies from Japan had to change scenes like holding guns,violent scenes and sexual expression,he said without mentioning India. “India is not imposing any restrictions. But we would like to have an institutional framework to enable cooperation between the two sides,” Takahashi added.

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