Anime & Manga News

Polygon Pictures Nears Completion of 'Ajin' TV Anime

by arsonal
Nov 23, 2015 1:00 AM | 39 Comments
In a feature article by the Mainichi Shimbun on Monday, digital animation studio Polygon Pictures revealed that it has completed production on ten episodes of the Ajin TV anime. The 13-episode series will begin airing on January 16, 2016, and the tenth episode is not scheduled to air until March.

Managing Director Hideki Moriya attributes the studio's production speed to efficient process management. "Frankly speaking, our creation process is similar to that of the manufacturing industry. I think the difference is that other anime companies are more similar to artisans."

Desktop PCs are lined up at the offices of Polygon Pictures in a manner similar to game production company. Its staff does not work on weekends, and overtime work is not done. In an example of its efficiency-oriented process, vacant PC stations are used to render videos overnight.

Polygon Pictures was founded in 1983 and has worked on Emmy Award-winning U.S. productions such as Transformers Prime and Star Wars: The Clone Wars. "American companies work on a tight schedule, and any delay in product delivery can result in fines," said Moriya. It is said that the studio has never made a late delivery.

The studio is also one of the most experienced in producing "cel look" 3D animation. This approach is most often used in the works with a science fiction setting, and many believe it is not suitable for dramas because it cannot reproduce complex human facial expressions. Ajin supervising director Hiroyuki Seshita is attempting to challenge this belief.

Seshita, who worked as an art director in Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, admits 3D animation has its strengths and weaknesses. He believes the key to a successful production is to "make [3D animation] not feel out of place, thus allowing the viewer to focus on the story."

Source: Mantan Web

20 of 39 Comments Recent Comments

CookingPriest said:
lots of trashy misinformed masses and CGI hate in this thread... Holy shit. I really wish people would educate themselves before posting.
Ew on this Post your comment is very disgusting, CG as an Idea is dumb for anime what makes anime so Lovely is the ACTUAL 2D ART not 3D and if all anime studio start to do this I would drop the this Hobby all together
( don't care how good the CGI is its cancer that Needs to die 1000,00000000000000000000 times over its gross and I hate it )

Nov 27, 2015 8:42 PM by lord23

eXtacy67 said:
The fact they don't work weekends or over-time is a good thing given a lot of studios extremely poor reputation of almost slave labor like conditions. Its a good thing they don't have production issues. I fail to see how this is bad PR
That wasn't the point, how is calling your work "assembly-line" work a good thing? Have you seen how an assembly-line works? Do you think that's a good thing for anime?
They even say belong in the "manufacturing industry" section of anime production and the other studios are "artisans", can't see how this would ever be a good thing.

CookingPriest said:
Again, this crap.
NO, CGI is NOT easier to make.

It just shows a different approach towards production - most of western studios finish work on at least half a season before the start of airing(followed by 2-4 month hiatus to finish second half), while it is very common in japanese industry to start working on episode a week or two before it AIRS. Employees have to work overtime with no extra pay, sometimes the production stops literally half a day before airing. Most of japanese studios are literal slave labor.
And when the company is no longer capable of overworking their staff, God Eater fiasco happens.

That's the point of article - they have a preset time when the work is done. No over-time, no working over the weekends, no rushed schedules to work on it as its airing.
The difference here is that they produce less, Japanese studios doesn't rush because they feel like it, they rush because they have more work, finishing a week or a year before airing doesn't affect how rushed it was, if Japanese studios felt like they could also have no overtime and no weekend work and still finish one week before airing and that wouldn't mean they were rushed.
There's no "different approach", they just don't have as much work so they take it easy, give a Japanese studio a show a year and you won't see them running to finish the episode the day before it airs.

Nov 24, 2015 6:31 AM by Paulo27

lots of trashy misinformed masses and CGI hate in this thread... Holy shit. I really wish people would educate themselves before posting.


Paulo27 said:
Yes, because that's what finishing earlier implies, that they treat their employees well, if anything this just shows how CG is easy to make and they should start spend more time trying to improve it.


Again, this crap.
NO, CGI is NOT easier to make.

It just shows a different approach towards production - most of western studios finish work on at least half a season before the start of airing(followed by 2-4 month hiatus to finish second half), while it is very common in japanese industry to start working on episode a week or two before it AIRS. Employees have to work overtime with no extra pay, sometimes the production stops literally half a day before airing. Most of japanese studios are literal slave labor.
And when the company is no longer capable of overworking their staff, God Eater fiasco happens.

That's the point of article - they have a preset time when the work is done. No over-time, no working over the weekends, no rushed schedules to work on it as its airing.

Also
Yerld said:

There's no computer that can magically produce hand drawn animation.

This is bullshit, considering majority of anime is NOT hand-drawn. A storyboard and preliminary designs are usually hand drawn, while everything afterwards is done via computers, via cgi-assisted animation and automatic coloring processes. And then everything in between is outsourced to random chinese/korean office where the same process is done for inter-frames, but at way lower quality of work.
Japan has been using it as early as princess mononoke.


eXtacy67 said:
Man the hate for 3D is just unbelievable. Anyone who has seen Sidonia, their most recent work, can tell you their animation is good.

B-B-But its bad because its 3d!
No, seriously, both Sidonia and Arpeggio of Blue Steel proved that there's nothing wrong with using 3d cgi to make anime, except for kneejerk reactions of a few kids who are too attached to certain stereotypes,

People just fail to realize that Sidonia would look EXACTLY like that even if it was the stereotypical traditional animation. After all, there's barely a difference between Arpeggio and traditional animation( I still remember the lulz on how the same people who were liking the animation in it, started trashing it when they learned its all cgi)

Nov 24, 2015 5:56 AM by Fai

Red_Tuesday said:
So they proudly exclaim they're an assembly-line.

I fail to see what good PR they were hoping to get with that. Fuck the fast food mentality creeping into art and entertainment.


The fact they don't work weekends or over-time is a good thing given a lot of studios extremely poor reputation of almost slave labor like conditions. Its a good thing they don't have production issues. I fail to see how this is bad PR

Nov 24, 2015 5:05 AM by eXtacy67

D-Joe said:
Paulo27 said:
The first movie airs this week, of course they already have to have most work done on the TV series, it's going to be the same as the movies.

Ajin doesn't particularly look that great so this "look at how fast we are" comes off as a bit silly because you still don't have a product that can match normal 2D anime, but I guess that's up to each one.
And while The Spirits Within looks pretty nice it's really not anime and requires a huge budget, it's not something TV series will ever really manage to do.

They also already done Sidonia's production before it start airing.
The main point isn't "look at how fast we are", is "we don't need to treat our employees like shit" unlike most other studios(even it's not like they want to do that).
Yes, because that's what finishing earlier implies, that they treat their employees well, if anything this just shows how CG is easy to make and they should start spend more time trying to improve it.

Nov 24, 2015 3:57 AM by Paulo27

So they proudly exclaim they're an assembly-line.

I fail to see what good PR they were hoping to get with that. Fuck the fast food mentality creeping into art and entertainment.

Nov 24, 2015 2:10 AM by Red_Tuesday

Sucks that it's 3DCG.

Nov 23, 2015 11:40 PM by Tengai

Man the hate for 3D is just unbelievable. Anyone who has seen Sidonia, their most recent work, can tell you their animation is good.

Nov 23, 2015 9:20 PM by eXtacy67

Huh is this going to be a 3D anime ? ( I hope not that suck for me big time I hate 3D)

Nov 23, 2015 8:35 PM by lord23

D-Joe said:
tingy said:

But it's nice that to see that they're challenging the belief that 3DCG is cannot reproduce human expressions as well as 2D, because I agree with that belief for the most part. Not saying I didn't enjoy Sidonia or Sanzoku, but it's true that the expressions were on the stiff side. If they went with normal 3DCG like FFVII or Captain Harlock (movie) then they wouldn't need to refute the expression comment, because expressions in those two movies were pretty on point (well maybe still a tad stiff compared to 2D stuff).


Their non-anime works always have well enough frame(like Tron: Uprising), so i assume it's budget issue.

http://www.ppi.co.jp/works/
(i know you should know what PPI worked before, the link just for people that don't know much about PPI)

Oh yeah, it's definitely a budget issue. After all, Toei did spend a fortune to make Captain Harlock as good as it looked. And no I didn't know everything they've worked on, so thanks for the link :) I guess I shouldn't have been surprised that they worked on Oblivion Island, that was a movie that I thought was on the level of Pixar stuff.

horitsubastudent said:

I'll try watching Ajin eventhough I think the "normal boy becomes hybrid" theme got a little overused lately.

True, but the main character in Ajin, Nagai Kei, is not really your normal protagonist for this type of genre, imo. So that at least might be interesting for you to watch.

Nov 23, 2015 3:47 PM by tingy

This studio is a joke , sure I guess you could consider them smart for capitalizing off the ease of producing poorly made cg works but overall the quality of their work is subpar compared to what most other studios have done in the past and are currently doing. I personally see them as one of the worst anime studios around right now.

I'd like to hope that wont get their hands on too many other manga to adapt but seeing how things are now I wouldn't be surprised if they do.

Nov 23, 2015 2:30 PM by raiken6

SchwingBoner said:
arsonal said:
Managing Director Hideki Moriya attributes the studio's production speed to efficient process management. "Frankly speaking, our creation process is similar to that of the manufacturing industry. I think the difference is that other anime companies are more similar to artisans."

Desktop PCs are lined up at the offices of Polygon Pictures in a manner similar to game production company. Its staff does not work on weekends, and overtime work is not done. In an example of its efficiency-oriented process, vacant PC stations are used to render videos overnight.

Man, I'd love to read an in-depth article on their production process. I wonder why other studios won't do the same...


There's no computer that can magically produce hand drawn animation. By its nature, 3DCG is far less labor intensive (rendering doesn't require any hands, nor is there any in-betweening or requirement to manually correct people's drawings to match a target model; you just wait until everything has been processed), so the comparison is dubious at best. It's almost like bragging about the perfection, quick learning (no time at all vs years for a human), and total cooperativeness of CG characters vs human actors.

At any rate, he's outlined an important difference in philosophy. One is more of a mechanical, manufacturing-like process, while the other emphasizes personal artistry and skills development.

Nov 23, 2015 1:56 PM by Yerld

Fullmetal89 said:
I was excited about this till I saw that it was CGI. I refuse to support full CG anime. Western animation has already been killed off by CGI. I don't mind if it's used on backgrounds, vehicles and occasional movement but fully CG models are disgusting.


Yeah, hopefully this never becomes common in the anime industry. 2D animation has a certain beauty to it that CG can never have. I can deal with the occasional CG anime, or some CG used for vehicles and such. I just hope anime never becomes fully CG the way the animated movie industry has become in America.

Nov 23, 2015 1:19 PM by Nintendofan204

I was excited about this till I saw that it was CGI. I refuse to support full CG anime. Western animation has already been killed off by CGI. I don't mind if it's used on backgrounds, vehicles and occasional movement but fully CG models are disgusting.

Nov 23, 2015 1:06 PM by FullmetalCarrot

No ty.

Nov 23, 2015 12:19 PM by Katsu-kun

j0x said:
well they are doing 3DCG anyway, 3D animation is getting faster to produce and cheaper each year

its only a matter of time when the anime industry fully embrace 3DCG, because of the benefits like this
It has finally come to this. I wonder hoe long will it stand?

Nov 23, 2015 11:21 AM by Album

eXtacy67 said:
This can only be a good sign for the anime. Also means that we could get another season of Sidonia fairly soon, hopefully.


I've put sidonia manga on hold because the hope for another season never dies
I'll try watching Ajin eventhough I think the "normal boy becomes hybrid" theme got a little overused lately.

I think I actually prefer the entire thing in CG over mixing 2D with CG. It always feels strange when the scenery in normal and then there's some mecha/monster/whatever in CG.

Nov 23, 2015 8:52 AM by horitsubastudent

Meh, I could probably finance a cg film myself, that's how cheap they are.

Nov 23, 2015 7:51 AM by ichii_1

Paulo27 said:
The first movie airs this week, of course they already have to have most work done on the TV series, it's going to be the same as the movies.

Ajin doesn't particularly look that great so this "look at how fast we are" comes off as a bit silly because you still don't have a product that can match normal 2D anime, but I guess that's up to each one.
And while The Spirits Within looks pretty nice it's really not anime and requires a huge budget, it's not something TV series will ever really manage to do.

They also already done Sidonia's production before it start airing.
The main point isn't "look at how fast we are", is "we don't need to treat our employees like shit" unlike most other studios(even it's not like they want to do that).

Nov 23, 2015 7:19 AM by D-Joe

The first movie airs this week, of course they already have to have most work done on the TV series, it's going to be the same as the movies.

Ajin doesn't particularly look that great so this "look at how fast we are" comes off as a bit silly because you still don't have a product that can match normal 2D anime, but I guess that's up to each one.
And while The Spirits Within looks pretty nice it's really not anime and requires a huge budget, it's not something TV series will ever really manage to do.

Nov 23, 2015 6:17 AM by Paulo27

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