Western fans aren’t the only ones unhappy with live-action Hollywood adaptations, according to a recent Japanese poll.
Japanese anime is an international phenomenon and has only gained popularity around the world in recent years. Seeing this huge spike in popularity, Hollywood and other Western movie machines attempted to capitalize and adapt several of these franchises while they were in their prime.
Sadly, the results were for the most part mediocre films at best, disappointing fans and critics for a variety of reasons. Low budgets, poor casting, and a general lack of loyalty to source material have marred Hollywood anime adaptations in the eyes of most fans. The general dislike of Western fans for these Hollywood anime adaptations is shared by Japanese viewers, according to a recent poll showing a similar sentiment. Disappointment is as universal as our love of anime, so let’s take a look at the results of the investigation.
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Japanese anime fans aren’t interested in more Hollywood remakes
This poll was conducted by a company called Viviane, owner of the Japanese streaming service, One Screen, and reported by Yahoo Japan. He asked anime fans what series they would like to see Hollywood adapted for live action next. Included options Demon slayer, Jujutsu Kaisen, Naruto, My Hero Academia and other current industry successes. “None” was also an option, which led to a embarrassing poll result.
On a sample of 1000 people, Demon slayer came in second, with a total of 60 votes, with most of the other options having no more than 20. An overwhelming majority, with 456 votes, went to “None”. While this is not an exhaustive poll of the general consensus in Japan, it does say a lot about how some audiences perceive Hollywood’s treatment of iconic Japanese franchises.
Made in Japan, ruined by America
This result likely stems from Hollywood’s less than successful track record with anime adaptations. These films, namely infamous films such as Dragon ball evolution and the Netflix adaptation of Death threat, have several problems with them as adaptations of the source material and in general. Often times, the most exaggerated or difficult to reproduce elements of the source material are diluted.
There is a constant disregard for the authenticity and whiteness of the characters that Asian actors should play. As a result, the films barely resemble the anime and manga they are based on, leaving all parties – namely fans around the world – disappointed.
While, in general, live-action anime adaptations generally struggle, those coming out of Japan tend to perform more favorably, including Death threat – not the Netflix version – and The attack of the Titans, which had live action movies and TV specials. While they typically have even smaller budgets than most Hollywood attempts, that doesn’t stop directors from using and adapting the more over-the-top elements of a series. While things don’t look very good in terms of special effects, the spirit of franchises is much more respected – something foreign studios have yet to replicate in a crowd-pleasing way. And if polls like this are to be believed, these crowds don’t have much faith in America’s ability to keep trying.
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