Astonishing news has just come up.
Kadokawa Shoten Publishing Co Ltd.’s president, Shin-Ichiro Inoue released the following message on Twitter:
“At this time, the decision has been made that Kadokawa Shoten will not participate in next year’s Tokyo Anime Fair. [This is because we find] Tokyo Metropolitan Government’s stance against manga authors and the anime industry community to be unsatisfactory in certain respects.”
Until now, anime companies and other larger companies have been avoided talking about Tokyo’s pending youth bill revision, even during last spring.
Now Kadokawa is not a pure animation company. They deal with publishing as well as anime, but they have a huge presence in anime, movies, TV as well as the printed media. Large companies usually prefer to avoid taking confrontational stances against governmental regulation, and very rarely do entertainment companies get involved in legislative issues, so this is very big deal.
And yes, I did verify that this was the Twitter account of the real Mr. Inoue, President of Kadokawa. I’ve checked with multiple sources.
But why target the Tokyo Anime Fair?
Part of it may have to do with the fact that the Tokyo Metropolitan Government is a member of the executive committee of the event, but more specifically, Governor Ishihara is the chairperson of the committee that operates of the Tokyo Anime Fair and his greetings can be found on the Anime Fair web page.
Until now, the passage of Bill 156 looked quite certain based on numerous tips I’ve received, but Mr. Inoue’s announcement might start a ripple effect that could alter the minds of legislators.
However, the chances that bill will pass is still very high. Now would be good time to have your voices heard.