The birthplace of “Fullmetal Alchemist” and “Attack on Titan”!

Among anime production companies in Suginami, we selected four companies which have many fans both in Japan and overseas and asked these companies about their specialties in the field as well as why they established their studios in Suginami.


Bones, Inc. [Pursuing works with a strong foundation]

Founded in October, 1998

Notable Works: “Fullmetal Alchemist”, “Eureka Seven Ao”, “Eureka Seven Astral Ocean”

The company’s public relations department told us, “There are many related companies here in Igusa, and also Igusa is a very convenient place for our staff. The genre of the anime we produce is quite wide, for example from sci-fi with robots to fantasy. Just as the name of our company signifies, we always try to make works that have solid ‘bones’ in them. Unless the work has a solid underlying structure, it will collapse no matter how much meat it may have. Anime is Suginami’s main local industry, and so we wish to make excellent works so that many more residents of Suginami (and the world over) will love anime.”


A-1 Pictures [Producing various works regardless of genre]

Founded in May, 2005

Notable Works: “Sword Art Online”, “Uta no Prince-sama”

“We chose Narita, Suginami for our office as quite a few animators and creators live here. We aim to maintain a production system that can handle any genre, including works for both men and women, as well as those depicting daily lives. Recently we have put our emphasis on creating original pieces. Awareness of animation has expanded greatly both in Japan and overseas, compared to some twenty years ago. We will continue to create works that will amuse anime fans so that we will keep up with the incessant changes in the world.”


MAPPA Co., Ltd. [The studio that brought you “In This Corner of the World”]

Founded in June, 2011

Notable Works: “‘Attack on Titan’ The Final Season”, “Yuri!!! On Ice”, “In This Corner of the World”

Representative director Manabu Otsuka told us, “It was our current president, Masao Maruyama, who founded the company, and he chose Suginami for its location. Mr. Maruyama was a co-founder of Madhouse, Inc. in Minami Asagaya in 1972. After that, the company moved to Asagaya and then to Ogikubo. MAPPA has been given a reputation by its viewers as producing good pieces directed toward female audiences, such as “Yuri!!! On Ice” and “Banana Fish”. Our female staff say that delicate depictions such as the character’s emotions resonate with the heart of women. We collaborate with Korean or Chinese companies, and we are actively hiring talented and motivated overseas staff.”

*See our full interview with MAPPA director Manabu Otsuka with “In This Corner of the World” director Sunao Katabuchi, here: Part 1, Part 2 (includes video)


Geno Studio, Inc. [Policy of real hand-drawn animation]

Founded in November, 2015

Notable Works: “Genocidal Organ”, “Golden Kamuy”

“The Mangrove Company, which was producing “Genocidal Organ,” went into bankruptcy, and we founded Geno Studio, Inc. to succeed its production. We chose Ogikubo area because of its convenience in terms of accessibility. People often say, “All the works by Geno Studio have a lot of scenes where characters lose their lives. There are many bloody scenes.” This is because the original works (from manga, novels, etc.) themselves have such scenes. The reason why we receive orders for such works as those may be that our first production “Genocidal Organ” had a very good reputation. In the future, in addition to TV series which we give priority to, we are going to focus on the distribution in demand, which people overseas can easily watch.”


Prospect for “Anime City – Suginami”

Almost all the production companies that we have introduced this time established their studios in Ogikubo, which fits well because Suginami has always had a lot of anime related companies. We are expecting that “anime-city-Suginami” will continue to produce a lot of wonderful animated works that will entertain fans both in Japan and overseas.


[published August 2021]