More than 60% of anime creators suffer from physical or mental fatigue due to the pressure of producing shows. 17% of respondents have suffered from mental illnesses such as depression due to their work. The current boom in the anime industry and increasing job demands can lead to unsustainable working conditions and harm the industry’s personnel.
A survey conducted by Association of Japanese Animation Creators (JAniCA) points out that many creatives are under pressure to produce cartoon. According to respondents, more than 60% felt physically or mentally tired. More alarmingly, 17% said they had suffered from mental illness such as depression. It’s a sobering revelation about the human cost of making animated films.
With the huge international demand for anime, studios have been handling more projects. However, the survey results released by Japanese public broadcaster NHK and Japanese news site Sora News 24 only further highlight the immense stress that creative staff are under.
This overworked environment could become a black mark on the industry, which is already mired in controversy following tragic headlines alleging unreasonable deadlines from some of the anime industry’s biggest studios.
Anime’s constant turmoil creates constant tension
JAniCA conducts annual surveys to assess working conditions in the anime industry. Their latest iteration includes questions about mental and physical health, bringing uncomfortable numbers to light. From the 429 respondents, it was learned that 66% said they felt physically tired, while 68% said they felt mentally tired. More alarmingly, 17% said they had developed or could develop mental illnesses such as depression. The full survey was not made public but NHK was able to report known statistics. The station also noted that the survey was conducted “last year,” making the information a bit dated.
The news comes amid recent controversies over overworked employees, most notably a series of social media posts by MAPPA employees who have complained at length about the crisis related to Jujutsu Kaisen. Anime is not the only industry where workers suffer – Kentaro Miura, author of the beloved Berserk series, who died in 2021 famously said in a 2004 author’s commentary , “I haven’t had two days off in a row in four days.” year”.
The current boom in the anime industry isn’t helping either, as more and more Western companies are making works based on their IPs, like Suicide Squad Isekai. The survey should serve as a warning that current trends may not be sustainable over the long term, as staffing is neither infinite nor capable of being “used up” and replaced. If the environment becomes too hostile to enter, then cartoon The industry will have to worry about more than profits.
Source: NHK, Sora News 24