7 posts tagged with Japan by Marisa Stole the Precious Thing.
Displaying 1 through 7 of 7.
In 2000, the anime industry was on the brink of what looked like a global takeover, and was pushing live action movies to the side. However, trouble began to take hold just a few years later, when labour issues involving long hours and low pay, along with a sharp drop in anime DVD sales, began to cause serious trouble for the industry. Although some government officials pinned their hopes in beefing up exports in order to breathe life into the economy, to industry insiders the situation looked bleak and possibly unresolvable using traditional models. However, other avenues - such as the internet, and even internet piracy - were studied for their economic effects. The results? [more inside]
Japan's opposition party, The Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ), is projected to win a landslide victory tomorrow, ending the 52-year reign of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). Furthermore, according to a survey conducted by the popular Asahi Shimbun newspaper, the DPJ could win a two-thirds majority, enabling them to roll legislation through the Diet unabated. Despite the projections, the two parties are still battling hard. Washington is following these elections very closely, because of the man who could be the next prime minister, Yukio Hatoyama. [more inside]
The global economic crisis claims another industry - anime voice actors, or seiyu. In a country that produces 60% of the world's animation, competition has always been fierce, but the rewards can be great, as seiyu sometimes achieve national fame, and are lauded with awards. The fame does come with a price, though: Female seiyu have fallen prey to stalkers, and male seiyu face the wrath of their fans should they dare marry. And for most seiyu, life isn't at all glamorous. It's estimated that 80% need to take on part-time jobs (at McDonald's, for example), or do voice acting for hentai; pornographic anime, in order to make ends meet. The fact is, the industry is glutted, and being a seiyu is no easy life.
Vocalist Sayuri Anpo is far from well known, even in her native Japan, despite an extensive discography, the ability to cross multiple genres and an amazing voice. But you can listen to a number of her works online: she does rock both here and here, something gentler here, and something closer to dance here (video image slightly NSFW). She recently teamed up with other musicians to form a light jazz group, with demos available for free download here (alternate link to demo files here for those who can't open .lzh files).
Have you met the Yuki-onna? You might meet her in a snow storm, and recognize her by her pure white robe marked only with a splattering of blood and her lack of feet. She might kill you with icy breath, or lead you into the storm to die of exposure, or seduce you, only to steal your soul. She's the subject of one of Japan's better known ghost stories (the climax of which was depicted in Tanaka Tokuzo's 1968 film Kaidan Yuki Onna) and has also made an appearance in Akira Kurosawa's Dreams (2:50).
Phase — Mother Earth, a piece created by Mono-ha artist Nobuo Sekine in 1968, has been re-created:
Consisting of a hole dug into the ground, 2.7 metres deep and 2.2 metres in diameter, with the excavated earth compacted into a cylinder of exactly the same dimensions, Phase — Mother Earth was instrumental in the early development of work by the Mono-ha artist group, and has been considered a landmark work in Japanese postwar art history.More about Mono-ha inside. [more inside]
On a Japanese island just east of Taiwan lives the Iriomote wildcat. Numbering between 60 and 100, this creature has been critically endangered since its discovery in 1967, although it has likely never numbered more than a few hundred in the 200,000 years it's lived on the island. The Iriomote wildcat is protected, and endearing to many Japanese - it was even featured in the popular anime Azumanga Daioh (warning: English dub). The chances you'll see one are slim, but conservation efforts continue.