04-12-2007 15:09

The animation industry in Japan is undergoing impressive growth. Its share in GDP has exceeded 10 percent. No wonder TIME Magazine says Japan is now becoming a big exporter of culture. We take a look at how Japan's animation industry has developed.

When we talk about Japan's animation industry, we have to mention Japan's first cartoon series, Astro Boy.

In 1980, China's CCTV broadcast the animated TV series. Since then the intrepid Astro Boy has been deeply rooted in the hearts of Chinese people. And its author, Tezuka Osamu has also become well-known.

This simple building in Tokyo is his studio.

Matsutani Takayuki, president of Association of Japanese Animation, said, "This room is Tezuka's studio. It's kept its original appearance. He had three desks for creating different types of cartoons."

In this room, Tezuka's belongings are everywhere,bringing us into his animation world.

Tezuka Osamu who was born in 1928 is widely considered the most influential animator in Japan, and the rise of Japan's animation industry parallels his career.

He drew 150,000 pages of comics during his life, and over 100 of his works have been made into animated movies. He is known to his fans as the God of Comics.

His scripts are locked in this room, called the treasure house. He drew prolifically throughout his life and his scripts have become valuable treasures.

Today, lots of commercial items relating to Astro boy have been developed. Successful commercial development not only brings great profit, but also gives impetus to the animation industry.

Matsutani Takayuki said, "Based on comics, animated TV series were created, in which there is always a hero with a wonderful story. Many commercial items have been developed according to those heroes. The sales of DVDs, video tapes, and other publications are very important to the industry. The related commercial items, including toys and games, also play an important role in promoting the development of this industry."