Who Is Hideaki Anno?

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Hideaki Anno. If you’re capable of naming three or more anime directors, then he’s probably one of them. You’ve heard of him because he created and directed Neon Genesis Evangelion–one of the most influential, infamous, and acclaimed anime series of all time. If you hang around in anime communities or watch and read a lot of analytical content, then you’ve probably seen him quoted, misquoted, speculated about, praised, and derided countless times in equal measure. What you may not have been treated to much of, is the big picture. Who is this guy? What’s his deal?

Now, obviously, I am not Hideaki Anno, nor have I ever spoken to the man. I don’t even live in his country nor understand his language. Everything that I’m going to say about him is speculative as a consumer of all of his work and all of the information about him that I could find in English, and should be taken with a dash of salt. I’m going to try and paint a picture of Hideaki Anno as a director and, on some level, as a person, by way of how I understand him–based on his work, his statements, and the way that he is presented by those closest to him. Hopefully, if nothing else, this will give you something to think about, and shed some light on just what this guy has been trying to do creatively over the last thirty-five years.

For an anime director, and for a guy who doesn’t do a lot of interviews, Anno’s career and personality have been impressively well-documented. Studio Khara–a studio which he founded–contains a pretty extensive bio page detailing his entire life as an artist on its website. His early career was mostly characterized by his being one of the co-founders and main creative forces behind Studio GAINAX, whose formation has been extensively documented not only by its members, but metaphorically in the OVA series that they put together called Otaku no Video; and in the semi-autobiographical manga-cum-TV-drama-series Blue Blazes, which was written by an artist who went to college with the founding members of GAINAX and observed their formation from the sidelines.

In 1999, Anno starred in an episode of a TV series called Extra Curricular Lessons with Senpai, in which he was brought in to teach a sixth grade class at the elementary school that he once attended on how to make animation. In the process, the kids ended up going to Anno’s hometown and meeting his parents and people he grew up with to get an idea of what he was like as a kid.

After Anno married popular manga artist Moyoco Anno in 2002, she went on to write a single-volume manga series about their married life called Insufficient Direction in 2005, which was later adapted into anime in 2014. All told, there’s more secondhand information about Hideaki Anno in existence than there is of possibly anyone else in the anime industry–not to mention that he makes cameo appearances in shows like Shirobako, giving further interpretations of his character; and all of it creates a pretty clear portrait of what he’s generally like.

If there are three things which every single account of Anno’s personality have made abundantly clear, and which are vitally important to understanding his work, then they are as follows: firstly, that Hideaki Anno IS otaku. Not just AN otaku, he is one of THE otaku, to the point that he was legitimately one of the earliest people to popularize the term as something that people called themselves, and to refer to himself as such openly. Secondly, that Anno is extremely socially awkward and most likely, on some level, autistic. I’m not making that up, Anno himself has made statements to the effect that not only might he be autistic, but that anyone working in animation might be autistic on some level as well; and I would say that this comes through both in the way that he’s portrayed in others’ work, as well as in some of the characters in his own writing that he relates himself to, such as Shinji Ikari. Lastly–though this may not be quite as important to grasping his work–Anno has a very low opinion of himself, in addition to having grappled with depression for a lot of his life. It would seem by many accounts that Anno became a lot more stable after getting married, but he’s certainly never been one to speak very highly of himself or of his own work.

Anno’s career path working in animation was more than a little unusual for the time, starting after his acceptance into an arts college in 1980. While Anno had been deeply invested in animation and tokusatsu shows and had been drawing manga since middle school, he was by no accounts a diligent student, and didn’t really think much of himself as a talented individual. If anything, it seems as though Anno’s talents, having manifested in his work producing a fan-made live-action Ultraman film for school using himself as Ultraman, and doing key animation work for Superdimensional Fortress Macross as an understudy, got him scouted by his peers.

Anno ended up working on the classic Daicon animations with the small team put together by Toshio Okada in the early 80s and discovered the joys of working with a team and being given directorial powers, thus leading him into the career path of an animator. His first work to get him recognized was when he answered an ad by Hayao Miyazaki over at studio Ghibli which was looking for key animators in the course of the tumultuous production of Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. Miyazaki was so impressed with Anno’s animation that he handed him some of the biggest cuts in the film, and the two have seemingly enjoyed a friendly relationship ever since.

After bouncing around doing key animation work at different studios for a while, often sleeping in those studios as well, and at some point getting kicked out of college for failing to pay his tuition, Anno found himself at the formation of GAINAX working on the Royal Space Force film; before taking up his first directing job on Gunbuster when the OVA series found itself without a director early into production.

The image that I get of Anno in the first decade of his career, is that of an immensely talented but totally directionless guy who just kind of managed to fall into a job as an animator; and, eventually, as a director. Bear in mind that most people move through the anime industry by going up ranks in the production chain, often starting as key animators, before becoming episode and animation directors, and eventually working their way up to a major directorial position. You could say that Anno did this to some extent, but compared to most people, he didn’t really do a whole lot of work in his early career, and bounced between studios and productions to an usual degree. The fact that he became a director so early on could most probably be attributed to the way that Gainax was founded, being as it was one of the only anime studios which didn’t form by breaking away from an older, existing studio, but just kind of sprung up on its own by way of hard work and guts.

I think this is important to understand, because it explains why Anno never seemed to be willing to sit still across his career, and gives perspective both to his influences, as well as to some of his infamous quotes. Hideaki Anno was never really just an anime guy–he was always big into special effects work and live action film, along with other mediums outside of animation. It just happened that the best connections he made and the places that needed his talents the most at the time were anime studios. All things considered, it really wasn’t all that far into Anno’s anime career that things started going south for him.

Not long after finishing Gunbuster, Anno was given Nadia: the Secret of Blue water as a project handed down from a TV network after having originally been conceptualized by Hayao Miyazaki. Given that Nadia is a loose adaptation of Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, it isn’t difficult to imagine that it might’ve been a World Masterpiece Theater concept, given Miyazaki’s involvement with that series throughout the 80s, and given the overall style and tone of Nadia.

Whatever the case, Nadia’s production turned out to be hellish for Anno, as he found himself with little creative control over the project thanks to its producers, and the plot and production totally went off the rails in the later episodes, ending in sort of a trainwreck. Around this time, Anno and his team at Gainax tried to launch all kinds of projects which were never able to get off the ground, including an ambitious sequel to the Royal Space Force which crashed and burned after years of work in the early 90s.

This is the period in which Anno fell into his infamous depression which mythically spawned the creation of Neon Genesis Evangelion–but I think the entire image here is rather fascinating. If the journey had ended here, then Gainax would have been just a very ambitious group of young animators who somehow went beyond the impossible for a brief and glorious period before totally imploding along with the rest of Japan during the economic collapse of the 90s. However, by some completely insane stroke of luck, they managed to make Evangelion.

Believe it or not, I think it’s often UNDERstated just how much of a big deal the existence of Eva really was. To put it into perspective, Eva was practically the genesis of the new idea of original TV anime. Up until the mid-90s, TV anime was basically never created without an existing source material, unless it was being made by studio Sunrise in order to sell robot toys. All of the big, original ideas were relegated mostly to OVAs and films–which were booming throughout most of the 80s, but became difficult to find the budget for in the early 90s. Franchises like Gundam and Macross were supported by their ability to sell endless robot toys, as were the more child-oriented Sunrise shows like the Brave series; but while Evangelion did indeed feature some of the most memorable and kickass robots of anime history, it’s plain to see that Eva was cast from a different mold compared other original TV anime that existed at the time. (Plus, there’s only like three robots that would actually make decent toys.)

And that, as it would happen, was the entire impetus behind creating it. Anno and the producers who funded Eva thought that what anime needed was a big, original TV series that wasn’t based on any pre-existing work to help revitalize the medium from its slow decay over the course of the early 90s–so that’s exactly what they set out to make. Anno was given carte blanche to do whatever the hell he wanted with the series for once, and he seemingly brought in every talented person he’d ever caught wind of to put their marks on the series in one way or another. Eva was designed out the gate to be a big deal, and while it wasn’t necessarily much of one through the early part of its airing, it most certainly became one in the long run.

It’s hard to imagine that the Be-Papas boys would’ve broken off from Sailor Moon to go make Revolutionary Girl Utena, or that Sunrise would’ve given Shinichiro Watanabe permission to do “whatever he wanted” with Cowboy Bebop, “as long as it had spaceships in it,” or that someone would’ve greenlit Serial Experiments Lain or Martian Successor Nadesico, had Evangelion not become the whirlwind success that it eventually was. While it might not have done much for Anno at the time, and in fact he fell into an even deeper depression immediately after Eva finished airing, his intentions of revitalizing TV anime were totally successful, and a whole new era of animation really did begin with the release of this series.

Were I to simplify what I think Eva did that was so special as to be such a game-changer for the medium, I believe that it represented a focal point at which everything that came before collided, and then took one step further.

Evangelion was what it was because of whom Hideaki Anno was at the time. He was a hardcore otaku–so he took elements from all of his favorite shows, like Space Runaway Ideon, Mobile Suit Gundam, and Space Battleship Yamato–and others from his favorite manga such as Devilman and Getter Robo–and others from his favorite tokusatsu films, such as Godzilla and Ultraman–and he tossed in the influence of live-action sci-fi films such as 2001 A Space Odyssey–twisted it all up in his own obsessions, from power lines to infrastructure, and in his mental hangups, from his depression down to his inability to communicate with others–and he packaged it all in an unforgettable presentation with as much talent behind it as might’ve existed in TV anime at the time. In short, the man created a goddamn masterpiece.

But, like any masterpiece, the series was entrenched in problems. Anno and his team were constantly reworking and rewriting it, even during production–at times because it was not finished, and at times because of things like a sarin gas attack on a Tokyo subway that forced them to change the nature of a major subplot. Their show got too graphic for its timeslot and had to move later into the night, while the production was falling behind schedule and crumbling in their hands, forcing them to resort to more and more recap footage, and eventually to scrap their incomplete work on the last two episodes to create entirely new ones from scratch–resorting to an insane, rambling, esoteric monologue set to practically zero animation.

It’s in this period of Anno’s history where a lot of his complicated and controversial quotations come from. Anno was adamantly defensive of the last two episodes of the Eva TV series, even though it’s obvious that they weren’t what he intended them to be. You can see unfinished key animation from End of Evangelion right there in the next episode preview from episode twenty-four–it’s not like they planned to end the series on a total clusterfuck.

Taking time away from the series and watching it bloom into success afforded GAINAX the opportunity to expand on the ending and to bring it to even bigger life with The End of Evangelion–so, in a way, the failure of the last two episodes may have been a blessing in disguise. If you watch his wording when Anno defends those episodes in an interview from 1997, he says that they were indicative of himself at the time and what he was going through, and that he likes them for that reason. I think that Anno was glad in the end that there were these variable versions of the ending which represented both the ideal, and the painfully real versions of what was going on with the series at the time.

Anno has been called a troll for the way that he said things like how Evangelion has no meaning; but you can find quotes from the same period which more suggest that Anno was hoping for the audience to find meaning for themselves rather than seeking it from him. Time and again, Anno says not only of Eva, but of art in general, that its purpose is to communicate–and that he wishes for people to be able to gain an understanding of him through his art. For someone who doesn’t really know how to communicate with people directly, he tries to speak through visual mediums; and he deems his success to be in how well his viewers understand him. In a sense, I wonder if it would even be depressing for someone to ask him what he means by something, when his entire hope is that he’s communicated his meaning through his work.

Some of his quotations indicate that he was more satisfied with the response that Eva got than not, though he would incorporate the death threats which he received from some fans into the End of Evangelion film itself. He would regard the production of Eva as something like a musical improv session in some interviews, even though the actual story of the series is solidly airtight through and through. And in spite of how he called the show meaningless at some point, Anno wrote a pretty lengthy piece about the themes of the series when he announced the Rebuild of Evangelion in 2006; but this video is getting long, so we’re gonna have to talk about that more in part two. Thanks again for watching.

The next part of Anno’s career can be potentially confusing if you don’t look into it right. In 2008, he is credited for directing Kare Kano, of which he infamously left the production after creative disagreements with the author of the original manga. He is also credited in 2008 for directing the live-action film Love & Pop–but listing them this way, as they are on Wikipedia, is actually misleading. Anno launched into writing and directing Love & Pop immediately after finishing work on End of Evangelion, and the film was released early into 1998–its creation having been spurred by the advent of digital camcorder technology, allowing Anno to get into live-action directing on the cheap without having to pay absorbent film costs.

Love & Pop is a fascinating little movie, and it’s easy to imagine why Anno would’ve wanted to make it after constantly running into production issues with anime over the course of the past decade. The film was clearly shot on the cheap and quick, and Anno went totally off the rails with his creative freedom, to the point that nearly every shot in the film is totally weird. At a glance, it would be simple to deride this film as some cheap arthouse fluff by a crazy anime man who doesn’t know what he’s doing with an actual camera–except that after about 20 minutes or so the film actually gets pretty good and kinda makes sense.

If Love & Pop convinced me of anything, it’s that when Hideaki Anno looks at a script, he seems to imagine every single line as having its own totally distinct shot to go along with it. It never seems to occur to him that he could shoot something in a standard way, or by conventional means. It’s possible even, though unlikely, that he just doesn’t know or understand the conventions–but I think if his animation work is taken into consideration, it’s more likely that Anno tries to visually communicate the emotions of every line in his script with as much weight at the words themselves.

Even if a lot of shots the in Love & Pop are clearly just meant to look weird and fun, it never seems like there’s a shot that Anno didn’t think about how it would be presented–for better or for worse. Perhaps the freedom of the third dimension was something slightly excessive to be handed to someone like him–and to his cinematographer who would go on to work with less-hyperactive yet equally experimental films like Bright Future–but nonetheless, I think it speaks to Anno’s strength of vision that his directing stands out so much in every medium.

Perhaps the fervor and energy which Anno brough to Love & Pop had yet to subside by the time he came to work on Kare Kano, because his shot compositions and the energy of how each scene flows together was even more uniquely breakneck in the early episodes of that series. Even if Anno eventually came to disagreements with the producers and with the author of the manga and ended up leaving before it was over, putting the production in a catastrophic state into the hands of his understudy, Kazuya Tsurumaki; I nonetheless believe that for what he did with it, Kare Kano was every bit as strong as Evangelion in its presentation, and is personally one of my favorite anime series of all time. To many anime fans, though, it would seem as though Hideaki Anno went quiet after leaving the show up until the announcement of the Rebuild of Evangelion.

Of course, the truth is nothing of the sort. Anno went right back to work on another live action film, with what I’d like to imagine was an “okay, fuck anime for real,” mindset after all those production issues, and released Shiki-Jitsu in the year 2000. I have to confess–I haven’t seen this film because I straight-up can’t find it. Even in this period, though, Anno was no stranger to GAINAX. He gave his voice to Naota’s cat in Kazuya Tsurumaki’s FLCL that same year, and did some storyboarding and cameos over the next two years for the studio’s Mahoromatic and Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi. In 2002 he directed the spastic anime commercial short Anime Tenchou with Hiroyuki Imaishi, and it was around this time that Anno actually started working to try to get the Rebuild of Evangelion project moving. Yes–in 2002.

Like most of what Anno involves himself with, the Rebuild project didn’t get off the ground at first, and wouldn’t do so until years later. If you think about it, especially knowing how early on it was being planned, the idea behind the Rebuild movies makes perfect sense. Even if Eva was one of the biggest and most influential anime of all time, it was still wrought with crazy production issues, and was kind of an unwieldy, confusing mess a lot of the time. The impetus to recreate the thing now that it was big and famous and could potentially pull as much money and talent as it needed to be all that it could be is pretty obvious. I would even say that Anno’s intentions of using Eva to propagate the evolution of animation was no less relevant at this point than it had been in 1995–but we’ll get back to that momentarily.

2002 was also the year that Anno married Moyoco Anno–who, as I mentioned before, would later draw a manga about their relationship and how much of an otaku Anno is. It’s worth mentioning that in 2004, when Moyoco’s famous magical girl series Sugar Sugar Rune was being adapted to animation, her husband actually did some storyboard and key animation work for the series, even though it wasn’t even remotely tied to anyone he’d ever worked with before. I just wanted to point that out cause it’s kind of adorable, and makes for a hilarious, “what the hell,” moment if you look at this part of career without knowing that his wife created the series.

Anno popped his head up a few more times as a storyboard artist on Diebuster and as a supervisor on the Re: Cutey Honey OVA, while also writing and directing a fucking hilarious 12-minute live-action film called Ryusei-Kacho, which is available right here on youtube and you should drop everything and watch it immediately after this video, it is awesome.

Having seen Ryusei-Kachou, Anime Tenchou, Diebuster, and Abenobashi, Hideaki Anno’s next live-action film–a GAINAX-produced tokusatsu adaptation of Go Nagai’s classic Cutie Honey manga which released alongside GAINAX’s own anime OVA series–makes perfect sense. Watching this film, I would just as easily have believed that Hiroyuki Imaishi or Kazuya Tsurumaki had directed it themselves. (At this point I’d have a difficult time even determining whether Imaishi and Tsurumaki developed their styles more out of working for Anno, or if they were seriously rubbing off on him.)

Whatever the case, Cutie Honey is a spastic, hilarious, carefree cartoon romp full of crazy visuals, adorable fanservice, and awesomely bad special effects. While it may not have the depth of character that Anno’s TV shows are known for, this film remains an excellent showcase of his talent for creating striking, memorable scenes that flow beautifully from image to image, and is a lot more cleaned up and coherent than his previous live-action work. I honestly kind of love this movie, and I think it fits into the overall Anno and GAINAX catalog just as sensibly as anything else they’ve ever made. It even has Mayumi Shintani playing one of the villains, whom you may recognize as the voice of Haruko, Nonon, and Shibahime, given that she almost exclusively voice acts for GAINAX series. I didn’t even mention earlier that Megumi Hayashibara, who voiced Rei in Evangelion, made cameo voice appearances in Anno’s previous films; but what I’m getting at here is that Anno’s live action work wasn’t all that far removed from his anime work–especially in the case of his Cutie Honey film.

After the release of Cutie Honey, it would seem that Anno really put his nose to the grindstone on trying to get the Rebuild series into development and establishing Studio Khara. For a while, his only appearances in the media were through random cameos in a handful of live-action films. It wasn’t until 2006 that the Rebuild films were finally announced, with the first of the planned four-part series coming out in 2007.

Now, once again, it would seem to a lot of people that from this point forward, Anno really didn’t do much of anything besides work on the Rebuild films for like ten goddamn years–and this isn’t as incorrect as it was last time. More so than trying to follow Anno’s career path from this point forward, what I’d like to try and pull apart is for what reason the Rebuilds have been presented in the way that they have been, and to what benefit.

A lot of Hideaki Anno’s infamous quotations have accused the anime industry of stagnation. He has often accused animators and directors of looking inward too much and only being influenced by other anime, instead of pulling influences from outside mediums–which is something that he’s consistently done throughout his career. He doomspoke the industry’s inevitable collapse, though later clarified that he was too harsh and mostly meant that things would fall apart if they failed to evolve. (Again, keep in mind this person’s difficulty with communication.)

These statements from Anno are nothing new–he was decrying the past decade of anime as early as 2002. In his mission statement about the Rebuild films in ‘07, he stated among his desires that he wished to fight the trend of stagnation in the industry, and to connect today’s exhausted Japanese animation industry to the future. Where these statements become strange and a little confusing, is when you stack them next to a series of films that are mostly just a remake of a twelve year-old TV show, which have themselves taken over eight years in production.

It’s hard to imagine that the Rebuild films have stayed in production for so long purely out of taking as long as they do to make; not when they’re so profitable that there are entire Evangelion stores, theme parks, extensive brand deals, and more money being made through Eva-themed pachinko alone than through any other facet of the franchise put together. There is a series–a SERIES of Eva pachinko VIDEO GAMES for the Nintendo DS. There is an Eva horse racing commercial. There is a market for Eva collectibles which is more comparable to a Sanrio character than to a typical anime series. And studio Khara itself often has a hand in producing these things, such as creating fanservicey new animations for the pachinko machines.

Evangelion is an industry in and of itself, and what better way to keep that industry running than to keep the hype alive for as long as possible? Instead of relapsing your hype train with bi-yearly reboots like Spider-Man does, you can keep an entire market afloat by blue-balling the patrons for the main attraction while billing them out of every side-show on God’s green Earth. Now of course, I don’t mean to imply that I think they could’ve released these films as quickly as they wanted to had they chosen to do so, but I can’t help but find some suspicion in the way that this project has continued, unbroken by any of its directors or the studio behind it working on any other major pictures, for over eight years now.

But I don’t necessarily mean to imply that Anno and his team are doing this out of greed. To make money, sure, but let’s return once more to Anno’s mission statement–to revitalize the dying anime industry. If you’re watching my channel, then it’s highly likely that you’ve heard me talk about the dismal state of anime funding, especially for original programs along the lines of Evangelion. Less money means less work for talented people, and less room for newcomers to get started in the industry. Animation is constantly understaffed because the industry is staggeringly underpaid. In light of all this, if someone wanted to give work to as many talented and/or young people in the industry as they possibly could, then what better way to do so than by dumping as much money into it as you can get your hands on?

In the past three years, Hideaki Anno’s intentions with the Rebuild films have seemingly become more clear. In 2012, Anno opened a museum dedicated to tokusatsu miniatures, which he saw as a valuable medium which was sprouting death flags thanks to production costs, and the increase of CG in special effects work. To commemorate the museum’s opening, he co-created an eight-minute short film with longtime friend and fellow GAINAX co-founder Shinji Higuchi, who’d spent most of his time since the 80s becoming a big-name special effects director in the world of tokusatsu. The short was produced by Ghibli and shot using miniatures, and featured a God-Warrior from Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind descending on and destroying Tokyo. In 2016, Hideaki Anno and Shinji Higuchi will be teaming up again to direct the next live-action Godzilla film from Toho studio, resurrecting the series after ten years of dormancy.

Towards the end of 2014, Studio Khara began releasing a bi-weekly series of short films entitled the Animator Expo, with Anno and Miyazaki attached as producers. Every episode of the expo features a different staff, with just about every noteworthy freelancer in the industry showing up across its run, alongside a swath of newcomers. If anything had ever seemed intended for the express purpose of injecting life into the industry of original animation, it’s the Animator Expo.

As much fun as it’s been having Anno pop up in random places, like as the voice of the main character in Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises, it can be a little sad to see one of anime’s greatest living directors get tied up with one series of movies for eight years–especially one as controversial and argued-over as the Rebuild films. It doesn’t help either that he took Kazuya Tsurumaki along with him, whom I suspect is more or less the more prominent creative force behind the films as he’s done even less outside of them in all this time. However, it stings a little less to see how they left GAINAX in the capable hands of Hiroyuki Imaishi, who cranked out some of the studio’s best work ever before branching off to form his own, even more outlandish studio in the form of Trigger. Even as a husk of what it once was with all of its big names gone, GAINAX itself is still keeping decently afloat, and they just put out an original series that a lot of people liked this year.

If there ever was a time when Anno’s career and personality seemed to be perfectly in alignment, though, then that time would be right now. Hideaki Anno IS otaku. Not just AN otaku, but one of THE otaku, to the point that he cares more about the state of the anime and tokusatsu industries than almost anyone else, and wants to see them blossom into further potential. After twenty years of being dicked around by producers and rarely getting things his way creatively, he became a producer himself, putting budgets into the hands of the industry’s most bold and audacious creative talents and letting them do as they please.

In Hideaki Anno’s afterword for his wife’s manga about their relationship, he goes on and on about how nicely her manga is able to communicate its feelings, and even goes so far as to say that it does a better job than his own Evangelion. You could easily write this off as Anno being cute for his wife, or as being overly humble–but at the same time, it totally seems like the kind of thing that he’d say in complete honesty. Anno has never liked himself much–he’s never been that confident in his creations on a personal level, and he’s always harbored a deep admiration for the work of others. If anyone was the right kind of guy to be funding other creatives and pushing their work over his own, it was this guy.

Once again, everything I’ve said here is speculation, and should be taken with a dash of salt. I don’t know Hideaki Anno any more than anyone else who’s watched all of his films and read all of his interviews, and it’s entirely possible that I’ve misinterpreted some of his intentions. Maybe the Rebuild movies really have just taken that long to make, and maybe his plans weren’t so grandiose from the start. Maybe he’s a little more confident than he lets on, or maybe his interviews are even more honest than I realize. Having been a fan of his work for as long as I have, and having read about him as much as I have, though, I feel like this portrait of his character makes a lot of sense to me. I don’t know if this is what Anno intended to communicate about himself, but it’s what I interpreted about him–and I hope that in sharing this interpretation, I’ve helped some of you to understand him a little better yourselves. Thanks again for watching.

Video sources:
Neon Genesis Evangelion
Extra-Curricular Lesson with Hideaki Anno: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eh0qbJAQhgk
Daicon III and IV Opening Animations: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-840keiiFDE
Otaku no Video
Blue Blazes
Insufficient Direction (manga on crunchyroll; sign up with my link, I get paid! https://crunchyroll.com/digibro )
Shirobako (on crunchyroll; sign up with my link, I get paid! https://crunchyroll.com/digibro )
Nissan commercial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EbNE57Q-qBI
Megazone 23
Anno’s Ultraman film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kJZBt6wTNe0
Superdimensional Fortress Macross
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind
Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnaemise
Top wo Nerae! Gunbuster
Eguchi Hisashi no Nantoka Naru Desho: http://sakuga.yshi.org/post/show/17634/animated-effects-eguchi_hisashi_no_nantoka_naru_de
Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water
R20: Ginga Kuukou (Route 2-: Galactic Airport): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pv5jdTDlnV8
Mobile Suit Gundam
Revolutionary Girl Utena
Cowboy Bebop
Serial Experiments Lain
Martian Successor Nadesico
The Vision of Escaflowne
The End of Evangelion
Does It Matter What Evangelion’s Director Says? (Idea Channel): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SVm65tlhqw8

Kareshi Kanojo no Jijou (His and Her Circumstances)
Love & Pop
Shiki-Jitsu (Ritual)
FLCL (Anno also storyboarded that trippy part I used, didn’t mention)
Anime Tenchou: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dm83UPreMbE
Evangelion 1.11 You Are (NOT) Alone
Kantoku Fuyuki Todoki (Insufficient Direction) (manga on crunchyroll; sign up with my link, I get paid! https://crunchyroll.com/digibro )
Sugar Sugar Rune
Top wo Nerae! Diebuster
Re: Cutie Honey
Ryusei-Kacho: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PCVg49Ff9m4
Cutie Honey
Nihon Chinbotsu (Japan Sinks)
Evangelion 2.22 You Can (NOT) Advance
Evangelion Store: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ar81fnbwcA
Evangelion Theme Park: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B1Lk4CO4vYQ
Eva Schick Commercial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YDn1QoTVt2U
Eva Pachinko game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjMnTWwvqrE
Eva Horse Racing Commercial: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FV36QPB0pew
Eva pachinko DS game
Why Good Anime Is Hard To Make
Nihon Animator Mihonichi (Animator Expo) Intro: http://animatorexpo.com/opening.html
Tokusatsu Museum: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3unlD_XIhQ
Giant God Warrior Appears In Tokyo: https://vimeo.com/64987176
Girl (Animator Expo): http://animatorexpo.com/girl/
The Wind Rises
Evangelion 3.33 You Can (NOT) Redo
Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann (on crunchyroll; sign up with my link, I get paid! https://crunchyroll.com/digibro )
Kill la Kill (on crunchyroll; sign up with my link, I get paid! https://crunchyroll.com/digibro )
Houkago no Pleiades (Wish Upon the Pleiades) (on crunchyroll; sign up with my link, I get paid! https://crunchyroll.com/digibro )
Extra-Curricular Lesson with Hideaki Anno: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eh0qbJAQhgk

Further reading:

Studio Khara’s biography of Anno: http://www.khara.co.jp/hideakianno/personal-biography.html

Nearly every conceivable quote from anyone involved with Evangelion about Evangelion has been collected in this gigantic source list: http://www.gwern.net/otaku#section

Most of all the key animation work Anno did: http://sakuga.yshi.org/post?tags=hideaki_anno+

A neat little interview between Anno and Go Nagai in which Anno brings up his Devilman influence a bunch: http://devilman.wikia.com/wiki/User_blog:Painocus/Interview_between_Nagai_and_Hideaki_Anno

Go check out my gaming channel if you haven’t yet: https://www.youtube.com/user/VABHermitSociety

My Twitter: https://twitter.com/Digibrah
Donate: digitalboyreviews@gmail.com
My Blog: https://myswordisunbelievablydull.wordpress.com/
My Anime List: http://myanimelist.net/profile/Digibro
Reddit: http://www.reddit.com/r/Digibro

One thought on “Who Is Hideaki Anno?

  1. Pingback: AniWeekly 61: A Day-After Halloween Party - Anime Herald

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