Anime is one of the few areas left where "traditional animation" is done. Traditional animation is a technique where each frame is drawn by hand. This method makes anime emphasized on how artistically it is made and allows more individuality to be expressed. Also, it clearly differentiates anime from cartoons, especially Disney animation which has more emphasis on the characters' movements. Even though computer animation is widely used these days as technology rises, the industry prefers traditional animation because the animators are generally more comfortable and able with this method, and it allows easier checking and correction of frames under sometimes tight schedules.
According to a blogger, ghostlightning, the first stage in creating anime begins with the careful planning of the production team, which involves the identification of target market, and the overall marketing strategy. Considering anime as an expensive business, producers make sure that after brainstorming, their plans are properly structured before starting the actual animation process. After arranging the core or main group involved (production company [e.g. Aniplex] ,staff, sponsors, anime studio, broadcasting and contributing companies), the next thing prepared is the script, which is written to bring the world and characters that were decided on in the planning stage to life. The script is reviewed by the producers, director, and the author of the original work before being finalized. This usually takes 3 to 4 drafts to finalize. And while the script is being set up for every episode of the anime, the characters and backgrounds are being drawn into detailed designs, of which the animators use for reference in their work. Some anime environments come from actual subjects and these places appear to be very consistent with the real environments even when fictional elements are applied, like the Ghost in the Shell movie's Hong Kong and The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya's...
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