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Unedited Feed from the Masao Maruyama panel at Otakon 2011. Transcription: bayoab
Note: ( ) is usually commenting on the panel and was not said.

10:03:33 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (Again, may be lag causing lines ot be out of order)
10:03:49 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Good morning everyone
10:05:05 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> We have have a continual favorite, Masao Maruyama
10:04:57 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> He's gone independent and has his own studio now.
10:05:19 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Release date in the US for redline?
10:05:41 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: I was under the impression there was a screening in the US....
10:06:21 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> I was told there was something in the works but I haven't heard the specifics
10:06:25 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (Manga has it iirc)
10:06:37 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: How do you decide the projects you will do?
10:08:17 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: Well there are various different processes involve din getting a project to animation, there is no set pattern
10:08:31 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it's alwyas different, but there are always some things, you need funding for the title.. you can see someone to finance it
10:08:41 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it also matters if it's going to be on TV or a movie
10:08:59 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and the actual idea itself may be coming from different places.. maybe the director will say they want it or the artist or creator ot he publisher may come and ask
10:09:05 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and say that they want the title to be animated
10:09:07 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> there are a lot of cases
10:09:14 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> after that you have to come up with a schedule and a budget for the title
10:09:19 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it's up to me as the producer how to do it
10:09:30 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and the it's always different and complex and always full of problems and tedius tasks
10:10:16 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> so it takes a lot of time and hardwork to come up and complete a title, so if there are shortcomings in the finished animation, all of them have endeering and fond memories in (lost)
10:11:06 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Recent movies have been split into multiple parts... what titles are ideally suited for those... kind of for the strings of series of movies
10:11:17 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (kara no kyokai, broken blade, etc)
10:13:48 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: The recent serialized form of animated films..well.. in order to serialzed a title, it has a world view that can contain continuous story telling
10:13:54 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but the recent ones haven't necesarilly been in that format
10:13:59 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> they aren't doing stories that are in a 2 hour format
10:14:11 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> they are more like things that should be released as ovas that are getting a theatrical screening
10:14:14 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and you have to look at the distribution
10:14:18 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> ghibli gets 200-300 theaters to show
10:14:33 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but if you take for instance garden of sinners, that was a single theater showing
10:14:46 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> the fans show up, and it will be a commercial success context
10:15:02 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> even among the theatrical productsion there are different patterns of distribution
10:15:12 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (missed part there)
10:15:56 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Status of tibetan dog? Info about new company? I didn't know you left madhouse. And 3rd, it's been a year how are you doing?
10:16:45 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: As for tibetan dog, this was released in china, and i hear it was recieved well, but there hasn't been a japanese release, there likely will be a release by the end of this year
10:16:55 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> In other words, the film is completed
10:17:35 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> And betwene last year and this year, it has been the most transitionary year for me
10:17:40 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> my 50 year career in the industry...
10:18:16 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and that relates to the second question
10:18:17 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> And there are certain details of the world that prohibit me from going into details
10:18:45 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> My work at madhouse does continue,a nd i'm working for two titles that are set for broadcast in japan this october
10:19:53 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> However, the financial situation in madhouse has changed, and there are now certain projects that are now more difficult to do, and that's why i started by own studio ,and the idea is for the two companies to complement eachother
10:19:58 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> the name of the new studio is (can't hear)
10:20:12 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> the big picture is that i'm still doing what i've always been doing
10:20:29 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Status of dreaming machine by Satoshi Kon? Anything you'd like to say about it?
10:21:10 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: Well, that question was one of the reasons was one of the reasons i was reluctant to return, but i knew it was a question i would have to answer so i gathred my courage to come here and answer it
10:21:22 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> To be blunt, the project is on hiatus
10:21:43 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> But I do want to go ahead with Dreaming machine, that's why I have my new studio now
10:22:13 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> And the biggest reason why dreaming machine is on hiatus is there isn't enough financing for the title
10:22:27 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> i don't care how many years it's going to take, i will get the financing required to complete the title
10:22:36 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> And currently, about 600 cuts of the film has been done
10:22:40 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> But there's still about 900 cuts to go
10:22:46 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> so most of the film hasn't been produced
10:23:08 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> And I haven't really talked about what he film is about but I think I can talk about it today
10:23:39 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> There's a tsunami scene at the very beginning ,and a whole town perishes... and the robot starts its journey seeking a seeking energy
10:23:45 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> this is an original story that satoshi kon came up with it 2 years ago
10:24:05 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and reality has finally caught up to the visions of satoshi knon and it happen in japan this year
10:24:22 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> I'm starting to think that certain creators do have the ability to see what's coming in the future
10:25:05 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> And so, Kon's film is how a town recovers from a tsunami disaster
10:25:29 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> I think it would be a loss to not finish this film, but no matter how many years it will take, i will seek full financing for the film and deliver it to an audience
10:25:45 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Considering that there is a second season of Kaiji, any chance of more Akagi and one outs?
10:26:08 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Anything else by Fukamoto that you want to see animated by madhouse or your new studio
10:28:05 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A; This is something that the producer at NTV, a producer by the name of Nakatani, wants to do Akagi part 2, that's something common between me and the director and him
10:28:14 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Akagi and Kaiji did establish a new style of story telling
10:28:25 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and we did establish... fukamoto characters have a strong characteristic
10:28:30 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and we succesfully did that
10:28:36 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and part 2 requires a commercial success of part 1
10:28:55 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and without that, producers and stations won't say yes, i think akagi has cleared that requirement so itt should be happening
10:29:23 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Who decides what you do? Who decides when and the details?
10:30:34 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: And this would related to the previous answer, but it's different according to every single title
10:30:52 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> there was a title that i may have been working since 10 years ago that come to realization that will come the next year
10:30:55 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> others will start in the year and release in the year
10:31:02 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> others might be at the hieight of the popularity
10:31:13 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but there are other considerations such as when a sponser of a financer shows up
10:31:16 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> so there is no rule or set pattern
10:32:25 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but there is a big difference between a title that can easily be greenlighted for production and something thhat has a hard troubloe
10:32:38 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> something that's easily greenlight is a title everyone knows well, like a shonen jump manga title
10:32:53 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> vs something can be an original story, it can be a great story, but if nobody knows, it has trouble getting financing
10:32:59 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and that's the type of project that has trouble getting greenlit
10:33:29 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and so i love my job
10:33:37 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> so it's great fun working on titles that always get greenlit
10:33:57 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but i'm also a contrarian, so i love the challenge of titles that have trouble getting green lit
10:34:16 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Any more plans or thoughts of anime you are creating?
10:35:11 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (lead in was that she loved death note)
10:35:48 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Well, death note is an anime was absed on a pre-existing manga, so if the manga artist decides to continue, we could do more that would be based on it
10:36:02 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> death note was created by a team of two people, a write and a manga artist who are working on bakuman which is different
10:36:12 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and i didn't think it was appropriate for madhouse so we didn't do it
10:36:25 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but i don't think it relates too much to death note, so it's probaly not what you are looking for
10:36:35 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> there is something else that relates to death note but i wonder what they may be
10:37:02 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Do you miss cell animation vs the more common digital animation? Do you think they could still do cell animation given the time and the financing?
10:37:29 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Do you think OVAs are worth vs doing TV shows, (in terms of production costs and (lost))?
10:40:14 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: (he's talking so much he's killing the interpreter's pen and hand)
10:40:33 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Well first of all, there is no going back to cel produced anime and that's not because of style or technique
10:40:42 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but a simple issue of if the materials of if paper and celuiods are still available
10:40:56 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but there is a difference between hand drawn and digital vs 3d cgi
10:41:02 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and we're talking about digital and handdrawn
10:41:16 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> because digital painting and filming makes stuff more efficient and it's progress and there is no reason to go back to cell
10:41:19 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it's still hand drawn art
10:41:33 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it still includes distrotions and (lost)
10:42:11 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (pick up) and i talked with my animations, and they say they just need to use the computer as a another tool, just like a pencil, it needs to be an enabling device, otherwise we have no use for 3d cgi if those artistic skills aren't accompanied by its use
10:42:24 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Season 3 of Kaiji?
10:43:06 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: There is a definite possibility especially since fukamoto and nakatani and the manga is ongoing, so there is a good potential for that
10:43:25 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Being in the industry for so long, how did you begin and why?
10:45:14 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: when i got started in the anime industry, nobody really knew what anime was about, because toei was making feature films, but tezuka's tetsuwan atom was the only thing on TV
10:45:48 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> And I started at Tezuka's mushi production, nobody really knew what was going on, they were seeking people who could continue working, they wanted someone who could work 24 hours a day with no sleep, and that's probably the reason i was recommended and stared there
10:46:04 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and after myf irst week at mushi, i got no sleep at all, and so tezuka saw what i did, and he said you've done well, i like you
10:46:14 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and that was the first word of encouragement i got and that kept me going for the next 50 years
10:46:47 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Saw highlander vengence, how easy it is when you work with foreign companies.. foreign studios...are they the ones who fund it outright, as opposed to the adaptation of the manga
10:49:28 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: Well, when you work with foreign creators, there are different values and those crop up
10:49:44 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and coming to a common ground is the most important task
10:49:47 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but that still comes up when working with a manga artist
10:50:00 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> they may think something is funny or important and we may not agree with them as animators
10:50:34 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> when working with foreign companies, working on the laugh points, those are the things that are the most differnet animatators and overseas creators and may have to cut out stuff that one of us finds not funny
10:50:43 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> but these struggles are important to the creative endevor
10:50:50 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> there is no diffference in terms of ease or difficulty
10:50:54 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (lost part toward the end )
10:51:30 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: How was the reaction of the 4 marvel series? Which was most popular in Japan? Was that whole black made with a Japanese flavor in mind or an international flavor?
10:52:14 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: well, if you ask me about personal favorites, of the 4 titles, i love them all and i hate them all
10:53:41 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and well, the idea was to be faithful to the original marvel comics, so marvel came up with the story line, and our idea was to keep the story that way but do a japanese anime style production to the visuals
10:53:48 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and it's up the audience ot decide if it was a success
10:53:57 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and it's to you to decide if it came out as a japanese flavor or american in nature
10:54:02 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> also up to you to decide if it's a success
10:55:47 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and alot of old people in the anime industry, those ancients who are in their 60s and 70s who started in the anime industyr in their 20s, people like me or rintarous, or the late tezaki, or ishiguro... we were fans of american comics
10:55:58 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and we always wondered why american comics turned into sucky cartoons when they were made in the states
10:56:01 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it was something we always wanted to try
10:56:09 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> can we make american comics into animation for a mature audience
10:56:12 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it was something we always wanted to do
10:56:24 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> and it was something that madhouse was finally able to do
10:57:09 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Have you seen anything in the US that you think you can use in a production? (also a part about seeing things in baltimore)
10:57:34 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: When i come to baltimore the most important thing is to catch up to sleep
10:57:33 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> so i sleep at day, and eat crab cake at night
10:57:52 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: (Missed first, which of marvel and dc allowed you the most freedom)
10:58:54 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: Well, the companies do have the labor and culture, but it's more up to the individuals, the editors and writers that allow freedom and contorl
10:59:03 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it's more by the creative team than the studio
10:59:16 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> it's like how the batman movies are different by each director
10:59:25 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Q: Continuing Tokyo Tribe or his other works?
11:00:25 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> A: Not currently, but I do love the works, and I'm friends witht he artists, but if there is financing, but the previous attempt was not much of a commercial success, so the potential is not good
11:00:30 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> That wraps up his Q&A
11:00:39 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> Thank you for coming
11:00:39 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> End
11:01:46 <bay|Ota|Maruyama> (Mappa is new studio)
Notes: None