Imagica Infos, a publishing and advertising business centering on light novels and magazines (subsidiary of Imagica Group), and printing giant Dai Nippon Printing (DNP) have inked a deal to co-produce “light anime,” a novel animation format designed for quick production and broad appeal.
Light anime, pioneered by DNP in 2022, relies on partially animated manga panels coupled with voice acting, significantly reducing the time and cost compared to traditional animation.
A team of about 10 people can reportedly produce a light anime in a short period of time, and the production cost is about 10% of that of a traditional television anime.
According to the company, this streamlined approach will cater to the growing global demand for easy, fast, and diverse anime content.
“The global popularity of anime is growing, and the market for anime is expanding. In this environment, Imagica Info is aiming to deliver light anime to the world that are easy to access, quick to produce, and diverse. The company believes that this will help to meet the growing demand for such content,” the press release on the company’s website read.
While light anime promises to shake up the animation landscape with its unique blend of cost-effectiveness, speed, and accessibility, this development might not be satisfying for fans of the medium.
In recent times, anime like Way of the House Husband and Back Street Girls: Gokudol have been called out for their substandard animation styles, which was very close to the light animation style’s digitized and moving manga panels.
However, Kiya Maeda, president of Imagica Infos, was of a different opinion altogether.
“When an animation director directs and popular voice actors provide the voices, the quality of the work is surprisingly high,” he said.
DNP will be responsible for the planning activities, and Imagica Infos, will produce the works as part of the venture. The works produced using light animation style will have 6-12 episodes, each 10-minutes long.
Imagica Infos had established its anime production vertical in April 2023, planning to leverage its original IP and produce light anime adaptations of both its own and external works. The joint venture will employ animation production staff, directors, and other creators to produce and direct the works to improve its quality.
In fact, Imagica Infos is already producing Dahlia In Bloom anime along with Typhoon Graphics, which is set to release in 2024. Check out the teaser below.
The partnership with DNP aligns with Imagica Infos’ parent company’s “G-EST2025” plan, which prioritizes “IP creation for revenue expansion” as a pillar of its business transformation strategy. Light anime, with its faster turnaround and lower production costs, is seen as a promising avenue for achieving this goal.