Crunchyroll, a provider of 360-degree omnidirectional content experiences including anime and manga in more than 200 countries and regions, announced the winners of the 5th annual Crunchyroll Anime Awards 2021 on February 19 (US time), honoring the best anime of the previous year.
◆Animation of the Year “Jujutsu Kaisen
◆Best Animation “Don’t touch the video lab!!
◆Best Fantasy “Re:Zero -Starting Life in Another World-
◆Best Drama “Fruits Basket 2nd season
◆Best Comedy “Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War
◆Best Girl Kaguya Shinomiya “Kaguya-Sama: Love Is War
◆Best Boy: Shoyo Hinata “Haikyu! TO THE TOP
◆Best Protagonist : Catalina Claes, “My Next Life as a Villainess: All Routes Lead to Doom!
◆Best Antagonist (Antagonist): Ryomen Tsukuna “Jujutsu Kaisen
◆Best Fight Scene: Deku vs. Overhaul, My Hero Academia (4th season)
◆Best Score Kevin Penkin “Tower of God
◆Best Director: Masaaki Yuasa, “Don’t touch the video lab!!
◆Best Character Design: Mayuka Ito, “Toilet-bound Hanako-kun” Original Story: Iro Aida
◆Best Couple: Seizora Yuzaki and Tsukasa Yuzaki, “Fly Me to the Moon
◆Best VA (Voice Action) Performance (Japanese): Yusuke Kobayashi as Natsuki Subaru in “Re: Zero to Start Otherworldly Life 2nd Season
◆Best VA (Voice Action) Performance (English) Zeno Robinson, “My Hero Academia (4th season)” as Hawks
◆Best Opening Sequence (OP) Wild Side by ALI “BEASTARS
◆Best Ending Sequence (ED) LOST IN PARADISE feat. AKLO by ALI “Jujutsu Kaisen
Fans also participate in the voting for the Anime Awards from among the nominated works selected by the judging committee.
In the fan vote held from January 15-22, 2021, approximately 15 million votes were cast from over 200 countries and regions, far exceeding the 11 million votes cast in 2020. The top three countries with the most votes were the United States, Brazil, and Mexico.
Most of the votes were for works from shonen manga magazines (especially “Jump”) and “Shosetsuka ni Narou”.
While there are some works that are popular in Japan but not in other countries, it is safe to say that there is no work that is popular in other countries that is not popular in Japan. It is interesting to note that even works set in schools, where systems and customs may differ greatly from country to country, are popular. Jibaisha Shonen Hanako-kun” is based on a so-called “school ghost story” motif, and it is hard to believe that similar bizarre phenomena are talked about outside of Japan, but this does not seem to have much to do with its popularity.
Crunchyroll has been acquired by Sony, and is expected to work with Aniplex and other companies under Sony’s umbrella to develop Japanese anime and games internationally.
Based on the viewing data and the results of these polls, I hope that a strategy that avoids the assumption that “a school story set in Japan will not be popular overseas” will lead to a future where unexpected works reach unexpected countries.