Before I came to No Film School, anime was one of my biggest blind spots. I hadn't seen much of it, but through working here and meeting cool people, I have gotten to broaden my horizons and see some really amazing films and TV shows.

It turns out, many of the movies I love already had anime elements inside of them. Now that I've watched some of the films that inspired them, I have a deeper appreciation for what was put on screen.

That's why I love seeing videos that compare these kinds of visuals side by side.

Our friends at Film Crux already made one astounding mash-up of anime-inspired filmmakers, but they released a sequel I knew you would be interested in seeing.

Check it out below.

Anime Inspired

Anime has had a significant influence on modern directors in various ways. I wanted to highlight some of the broader themes here.

Maybe they can inspire you as well in these few ways:

  • Visual Innovation: Anime often pushes the boundaries of visual storytelling. Its diverse art styles, intricate character designs, and imaginative worlds have inspired directors to experiment with visuals in their own work. Directors like Quentin Tarantino (e.g., Kill Bill) and the Wachowskis (e.g., The Matrix) have incorporated anime-inspired aesthetics into their films, creating visually striking and memorable experiences.
  • Storytelling Techniques: Anime frequently explores complex narratives, diverse genres, and unconventional storytelling structures. Directors like Christopher Nolan (e.g., Inception) have drawn inspiration from anime's non-linear storytelling and ability to blend reality and fantasy to create intricate and thought-provoking narratives.
  • Genre Fusion: Anime is known for its willingness to blend different genres, whether it's combining science fiction and romance or fantasy and horror. This willingness to mix genres has influenced filmmakers to create hybrid films that appeal to a broader audience. For example, the film Pacific Rim blends elements of mecha anime with Western science fiction.
  • Character Development: Anime often places a strong emphasis on character development and explores the psychological aspects of its characters. Directors like Darren Aronofsky (e.g., Black Swan) have been influenced by anime's character-driven storytelling and exploration of complex human emotions.
  • Action Sequences: Anime features dynamic and visually engaging action sequences, which have inspired directors working in the action genre. Films like The Avengers and even Nope draw inspiration from the over-the-top action scenes commonly found in anime.
  • Worldbuilding: Many anime series and films create rich and immersive fictional worlds. This has inspired directors to pay more attention to world-building in their own projects.
  • Cultural Exploration: Anime often delves into Japanese culture and folklore, introducing global audiences to these elements. This cross-cultural exchange has inspired directors to explore different cultures and perspectives in their films.
  • Experimental Storytelling: Some anime, such as Satoshi Kon's works (Perfect Blue, Paprika), employ surreal and psychologically challenging storytelling techniques. This has encouraged directors to experiment with the boundaries of reality and imagination in their own films.
  • Fandom: The passionate and dedicated fan communities around anime have shown the power of storytelling to connect with audiences on a deep emotional level. This has encouraged directors to engage more with their fan bases and create content that resonates with dedicated fans.

Anime's impact on modern directors is evident in various aspects of filmmaking, including visual style, storytelling techniques, genre-blending, character development, and cultural exploration.

As anime continues to evolve and gain international recognition, its influence on filmmaking is likely to persist and expand in the future.

So if you want inspiration for your next project, maybe it's time to turn on some anime and see where it takes you.

Let me know what you think in the comments.