Sound! Euphonium Roundtable: Director Tatsuya Ishihara, Series Director Naoko Yamada, & Author Ayano Takeda

This is a translation of the (long) roundtable discussion between Director Ishihara, Series Director Yamada, and Author Takeda that was published in the Sound! Euphonium Official Fanbook (published on September 25, 2015 by Takarajimasha). Thanks to @yuyucow, @tadamari, and @animenewsdotbiz for their comments and reviews.

Director x Series Director x Author Roundtable


Tatsuya Ishihara
Anime director at Kyoto Animation. Previous works directed include Chuunibyou Demo Koi ga Shitai!, Nichijou, and The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya.

Series Director:

Naoko Yamada
Anime director/animator at Kyoto Animation. Previous works directed include K-On!, Tamako Market, and the award-winning Tamako Love Story.


Ayano Takeda
Author. Debuted with “Today, We Breathed Together” in 2013. Also in 2013, Sound! Euphonium was published; currently there are 3 volumes and a collection of shorts published. Continue reading

Photography and resolution of anime

A couple years ago, I wrote a piece talking about the Anibin blog and how the author measured resolution of anime by using the television broadcast. Later on, I noticed that the methods used to judge the productions from Kyoto Animation was a bit suspect. Simultaneously, I started to notice the photography of shows a lot more, especially on the Blu-ray versions of the show. I’ve seen many people quote that KyoAni produces at 955.5p for main feature and full HD for openings and endings. I accepted it initially as I trusted Anibin as a source, but later I started to question that as the logic behind producing something like that didn’t add up. The following is a brief overview of the photography of anime and how that affects Anibin’s resolution guesses. Continue reading

Kyoto Animation and their evolution (March 2015 ver)

Founded in 1981 and incorporated in 1985, Kyoto Animation (once known as Kyoto Anime Studio) is a good studio to look at the evolution of a studio that once focused only on one aspect of animation into a subcontractor into an animation producer into an multimedia studio. This is a look at how they grew into who they are now.

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The reasoning behind a lack of Haruhi S3 (Updated March 2015)

In April 2006, a reasonably popular light novel franchise by the name of The (blank) of Haruhi Suzumiya began airing its anime adaptation. Little did the producers know that the anime would become one of the top selling series of all time. The franchise became huge and a second season seemed inevitable. However, fate had other ideas in store. This post will detail how the Haruhi Suzumiya franchise has yet to receive a third season after selling nearly 100,000 copies per volume on DVD in 2006 (oricon miscalculations).

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Free! and the future of KyoAni productions

On April 26, 2013 Kyoto Animation announced their 17th self-produced animation production entitled FREE!, a series about a group of friends re-uniting in their passion for swimming after going their separate ways following a victory in the elementary school nationals. What really got people in an uproar was the fact that all the main characters in this series were male and a previous advertisement involving these characters was very focused around their appeal towards female viewers. Of course this caused certain fans to be upset, things have been said, etc. I’m not going to focus on that (it’s been covered already). Nor am I going to focus on what mistakes have been made in covering this series (again, already covered). What I want to focus on is the impact FREE! has in future productions by Kyoto Animation that’s been heavily ignored by most fans, production and revenue (and no, not focusing towards a different audience).

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Kyoto Animation CM Credits Collection

In the past few years, Kyoto Animation has begun to take a bigger lead in the sponsorship of their shows. This leads to them being able to provide a commercial in each of the timeslots their shows air in. This post will collect the staff involvement for each of the commercials they air based on the listing in their website. As more are added, this post will be updated. Continue reading

Nichijou NHK-E Episode Composition

Last last year, the television station NHK announced that they were planning to air a revised version of the anime show Nichijou on their educational stations throughout Japan. They aired this revised version of the show from 2012/01/07 to 2012/03/24 and it was in such high demand that they re-aired it in June. Now, this version of the show has been listed to be released as a “Director’s Cut” version DVD-BOX. I’ve not seen anyone detail about how the series was re-organized, so I thought a post detailing the segments would be a good reference. I’m citing the information from Shinkai’s blog and have taken screencaps from Random Curiosity (I watched via Crunchyroll, so I have no way to take screencaps). Continue reading

The Haruhi anime history and future speculation (December 2011 edition)

With the recent reports that a Kadokawa representative said they have no plans to broadcast a third Haruhi season, and Kyoto Animation’s new announced works of Hyouka and Chuuni-byou Demo Koi Shitai! the western fans of the Haruhi anime franchise have been upset. Call it stupidity, call it ignorance, call it whatever you want, but I have faith we’ll be hearing about something. So in order to predict the future, we use examples from the past. Let’s first review what has happened with the Haruhi anime franchise.

In 2005, it was first announced in the October 2005 edition (released in August 2005) of The Sneaker that the light novel Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu would be made into an anime. It began airing in April 2006 until July2006, when it was first featured in the anime magazine Newtype. The airing of the anime combined with the beginning popularity of video sites such as YouTube and the ease of viewing anime through the internet made the series into a phenomenon known around the world. As soon as it finished airing, fans were wanting another season. Their prayers would be answered one year later on July 7th, 2007. Continue reading

Planned spoiler post for The Surprise of Haruhi Suzumiya

Edit: Since a lot of people are looking, my good friend Yumeka has assembled a post containing all the spoilers thus far. It’s quite the interesting twist and I greatly like where it’s going.

As some of you may know one of my hobbies is searching for news about anything to do with the Haruhi Suzumiya franchise regardless of language or location. As such I often find news items before others do and tend to post them. Sometimes they’re at the AnimeSuki forums, and sometimes it’s little enough that my Twitter account is best. I’m going to try something new for the release of the tenth/eleventh novel set. Here’s going to be place #2 for my spoilers. Incidentally, if you’re not familiar with the other novels it’s best to look away as the story continues from the ninth novel in this set. There’s also a special short story that takes place in Kyon’s middle school days. Having said that, the rest of the post is classified information.

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The growth of the Haruhi novel phenomenon in Japan and internationally

Proving once again that I have no idea what’s going to happen in my next post, I’ve decided to research a little into my favorite franchise: the Haruhi Suzumiya series. For a little bit of background information, Kadokawa Publishing’s The Sneaker bimonthly light novel magazine has a literary brand entitled the Sneaker Bunko (or The Sneaker Library Collection). This is Kadokawa’s branch for light novels targeted towards teenage males. Light novels are books that have less kanji and are grammatically less challenging than ordinary novels in Japan. That’s not saying that they are any less of literary value, just approached to be easier to read. In North America, a similar market would be the “Young Adult” lines.

In 2003, The Sneaker‘s June edition featured a short story about Haruhi Suzumiya and her brigade playing baseball. This would be called The Boredom of Haruhi Suzumiya and soon after the first full novel would be published two months later: The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya. This was a highly respected work and won The Sneaker‘s Grand Prize award for only the third time (has been won twice since) for 2003. Soon after more stories would be published about Haruhi’s Sigh, Boredom, Disappearance, Rampage, Wavering, Intrigue, Indignation, and Dissociation.

Contrary to belief, Haruhi was popular before 2006. Right before the first TV anime series had aired (April 2006, just under three years from the first publication) Haruhi had sold 1.5 million copies with 7 books published. (Indignation would be published during the first airing).  That would give about 214,286 copies sold per volume.  That’s not to say that the anime itself did not spur the series to unprecedented heights. In only a few months later, the series would reach 2.8 million copies sold for 8 volumes; approximately 350,000 copies sold per volume ( a 60% increase in a few months). (1) One year later in December 2007, the series totaled 4.3 million copies for 9 volumes, giving 477,778 copies a volume  (2, 3) for the series after Dissociation was released and the anticipation for Surprise built.

During this time, international publishers began interest in the series. The series was licensed in Hong Kong/China, South Korea, and Taiwan by various Kadokawa subsidiaries and Daewon C.I. around 2006 and the North American version became licensed in 2008 and released in 2009. Currently, the light novels and manga have been published in over 16 countries.

From April 2007 until the end of 2009, the series grew steadily and sales picked up again when the TV anime series “re-aired” in 2009. In 2008, the series sold 1 million copies along (4.3 million to 5.3 million) with the 9 volumes.  In just over another month, the series sold another 20,000 copies to reach 5.6 million (4). At the beginning of 2010, Kadokawa’s official site updated to say that the series sold over 6 million copies total (5). Finally, by the beginning of last month, the series had sold around 7 million copies (6).

With the tenth and eleventh volumes going on sale later this month, the series will have sold over 8 million copies in 11 volumes (6). That averages 727,273 copies per book (and certainty of 513,000 for each volume of Surprise), which is the most of any light novel to date. Here is a chart that someone thankfully compiled at 2ch in December. Since this was calculated, one volume of Index, one volume of Ore no Imouto and one volume of the Bakemonogatari series has been released. Everything else should be somewhat accurate.

Latest reporting date|Total Sold|Total Volumes|Amount sold per volume|Series Name
| 2010/09 | *6,500,000 | *9 | 722,000 | Suzumiya Haruhi series
| 2008/05 |*20,000,000| 45 | 444,000 | Slayers
| 2010/10 |*10,000,000| 24 | 417,000 | To Aru Majutsu no Index series
| 2010/08 | *9,000,000 | 22 | 409,000 | Full Metal Panic!!
| 2010/05 | *4,000,000 | 10 | 400,000 | Seitokai no Ichizon
| 2009/11 | *7,500,000 | 22 | 341,000 | Shana
| 2010/06 | *2,700,000 | *8 | 338,000 | Durarara!!
| 2010/07 | *3,300,000 | 10 | 330,000 | Baka to Test
| 2009/11 | *3,500,000 | 13 | 269,000 | Spice and Wolf
| 2009/07 | *3,200,000 | 12 | 267,000 | Toradora!
| 2010/04 | *5,000,000 | 20 | 250,000 | The Story of Saiunkoku
| 2010/08 | *1,500,000 | *6 | 250,000 | Ore no Imouto
| 2009/12 | *1,190,000 | *5 | 238,000 | Bakemonogatari series
| 2010/04 | *4,300,000 | 21 | 205,000 | The Familar of Zero series
| 2010/08 | *1,700,000 | 12 | 142,000 | Nogizaka Haruka no Himitsu
| 2010/03 | *1,000,000 | *8 | 125,000 | Mayoi Neko Overun!
| 2010/08 | *1,300,000 | 11 | 118,000 | Ookami-san series
| 2010/05 | *4,000,000 | 36 | 111,000 | The Legend of the Legendary Heroes
| 2010/08 | *1,500,000 | 14 | 107,000 | Asura Crying
| 2009/10 | ** 820,000 | *9 | *91,000 | Ladies versus Butlers!

Internationally and combining manga sales, the franchise has sold over 16 million copies of books for the various publishers. This is an immense franchise that has grown tremendously in the past 5 years. From 1.5 million to 8.0 million copies sold is outstanding for a 11 volume series. As a fan, I can only say here’s to the success of the Haruhi Suzumiya franchise! Below is a tl;dr chart of the series thus far. Updated on 5/17/2011 with additional dates.

Reporting Date Amount sold Volumes Amount Sold per Volume Reporting Difference Difference from 2005
Jan-05 700000 5 140,000
Mar-06 1300000 7 185,714 86% 86%
Apr-06 1500000 7 214,286 15% 114%
May-06 1800000 8 225,000 20% 157%
Jun-06 2500000 8 312,500 39% 257%
Jul-06 2800000 8 350,000 12% 300%
Oct-06 3200000 8 400,000 78% 357%
Dec-06 3400000 8 425,000 6% 386%
Mar-07 4000000 9 444,444 18% 471%
Jun-07 4300000 9 477,778 34% 514%
Feb-08 4500000 9 500,000 5% 543%
Apr-08 5000000 9 555,556 11% 614%
Dec-08 5300000 9 588,889 23% 657%
Feb-09 5600000 9 622,222 6% 700%
Jun-09 5800000 9 644,444 4% 729%
Jan-10 6000000 9 666,667 7% 757%
Sep-10 6500000 9 722,222 8% 829%
Apr-11 7000000 9 777,778 17% 900%
Jun-11 8000000 11 727,273 14% 1043%

I owe a great deal of thanks to all of the Japanese fans who not only have supported this series, but who have helped collect all of this data and allow it to be stored for fans like myself to report internationally. ありがとうございます!

1 – Kadokawa’s public report for fall 2006
2 – Hyougo young authors taking over light novels/
3 – Syu-ta’s blog for Mainichi web report
4 – Syu-ta’s blog for Kadokawa’s mention in 2009
5 – Syu-ta’s blog for Kadokawa’s mention in 2010
6 – Haruhi Suzumiya latest novel Surprise to have a record for light novel first pressing: 513,000 copies for a 2 volume set!