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What was Macross's budget?

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Hi, i'm n00b here, so bear with me yeah?

Started rewatching Macross SDF after 15 years fast forwarded from my childhood. Things I never realised as a kid, the obvious cutting-cost animation. I was just wondering how much was Macross's budget when it started. It seems on certain frames quite oftenly, there will be animation inconsistencies, ie: colors change, gunpod not there, pure white valkyrie etc. Its like they had a whole buncha animators sitting in a room, but not all of them are following the color designs they were given or something. There was also a scene which I vaguely remembered, when Max and Hikaru was in Britai's ship....one of the valk's changed into the VF-1D.....or some other valk that wasn't supposed to be there. (i'm rewatching....these are vague childhood memories)

Are these mistakes due to inexperienced animation staff, low budget, or short on time? But Macross is not the only cartoon which suffered from art inconsistencies. Being a Transformers fan as well, there are alot of these inconsistencies in Transformers as well. Is it just something that happens often in old anime? IE: people not careful enough with QC issues.

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What's animefriends? Urmmm....no reply after 40 views....is this a stupid question?

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wow i think you managed to find a question that no one knows the answer to. congrats!

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Long story short, three studios produced animation for Macross.

Animefriend, a studio under the umbrella of Tatsunoko, was one of these studios and did a lot of the work.

Animefriend sucks.

Really, really bad.

Although there are QC issues with all of the animation, most of it can be chalked up to simple oversight.

But animefriend can't even keep correct proportions (or even attempt them) in a single shot, let alone consecutive frames.

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Long story short, three studios produced animation for Macross.

Animefriend, a studio under the umbrella of Tatsunoko, was one of these studios and did a lot of the work.

Animefriend sucks.

Really, really bad.

Although there are QC issues with all of the animation, most of it can be chalked up to simple oversight.

But animefriend can't even keep correct proportions (or even attempt them) in a single shot, let alone consecutive frames.

That's an interesting titbit. Thanks, Drew.

Any links to previous discussions/topics on this?

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That's an interesting titbit. Thanks, Drew.

Any links to previous discussions/topics on this?

A good place for Macross history would be either the Macross Compendium, Lebhead's Macross/Robotech comparison essays or (for a good dose of fun), the the infamous License Debate thread, which does touch upon the history and production of Macross... occasionally.

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The January 2003 ruling says that Mainichi paid "5,500,000 yen per episode as an expense of a production in the animation movie," which gave Mainichi the exclusive right to broadcast SDF Macross in Japan for 2 years. This was based on their agreement with Tatsunoko Productions (TP) made in September 1982. That was because TP were the copyright owners of the material since they had been paying all production expenses out of pocket since May of that same year.

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The January 2003 ruling says that Mainichi paid "5,500,000 yen per episode as an expense of a production in the animation movie," which gave Mainichi the exclusive right to broadcast SDF Macross in Japan for 2 years. This was based on their agreement with Tatsunoko Productions (TP) made in September 1982. That was because TP were the copyright owners of the material since they had been paying all production expenses out of pocket since May of that same year.

And, in turn, Tatsunoko parceled off much of the animation duties to the "lowest bidder*" in order to keep as much of the money as possible.

At least, that's my opinion.

*the lowest bidder being Animefriend, who probably produces sheap, yet crappy, work.

IIRC- Studio Nue (or Artland) probably produced some of the best animation you'll see early in the series. Simply because they were the creators and wanted their baby to look as good as possible, although time constraints considerably dulled their attention to detail and quality later in the series.

The next step down is Tatsunoko themselves. A more experienced company with skilled animators, yet lacking the heart and desire that drove Studio Nue. In the end, the simple inability of Tatsunoko's animators to correctly interpret Studio Nue's intent led to minor consistency errors, along with the expected continuity errors.

Animefriend got tossed the rest of the animation, possibly after it was decided to re-lengthen the series to 36 episodes. Their quality was sub-par, and animation, proportion and simple artistic mistakes are readily evident.

In the end, the original macross series is a frankenstein monster that has it's great, it's good and it's bad parts.

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Very few anime tv shows from the early 80's had anywhere near a high budget. For what budget they had they did good with. Except Animefriend. They sucked the big one.

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The issue wasn't budget so much as time restraints. The Macross Production schedule didn't allow for Big West's chosen studio (Artland wasn't it?) to do the full work load, so they had to seek out help (Tatsunoko, and in turn, animefriend).

As Orguss showed not a year alter, Macross could have looked so great for its full run.

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The fees for making Macross flowed from sponsors through Big West to Mainichi Broadcasting and thence to Tatsunoko. However, the amount quoted (which Wrylac gets from the court judgments in recent legal cases) doesn't tell us how much it really cost to make Macross. For that you'd have to audit Tatsunoko's internal records. (Good luck!)

Tatsunoko claimed the fees they received were insufficient to cover their costs, on which grounds they renegotiated their contract and received additional compensation in the form of international distribution and merchandising rights.

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The issue wasn't budget so much as time restraints. The Macross Production schedule didn't allow for Big West's chosen studio (Artland wasn't it?) to do the full work load, so they had to seek out help (Tatsunoko, and in turn, animefriend).

yeah, i think originally it was supposed to be Artland.

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Remember kiddies: Say "NO!" to Korean animation studios.

Well, that's not entirely fair. Maybe in the 80's and early-90's it was prudent to say "no" to Korean animation studios. But several notable projects have come out recently which shows that Korean studios are starting to release quality projects.

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Remember kiddies: Say "NO!" to Korean animation studios.

A whole bunch of high quality aniem is animated in Japan, so that's a pretty ridiculous thing to say. You'd be hard pressed to find an aniem series or movie that wasn't at least partially animated in Korea. Not to mention the fact that their are some damn good Korean animation studios. I'd advise you to check out the movie Wonderful Days, it'll make you rethink your opinion on Korean animators.

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Remember kiddies: Say "NO!" to Korean animation studios.

Mospeada was done by Anime Friend.

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Remember kiddies:  Say "NO!" to Korean animation studios.

Mospeada was done by Anime Friend.

Yeah, but considering Amano did the initial designs, look how far they deviated...:)

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Remember kiddies:  Say "NO!" to Korean animation studios.

Mospeada was done by Anime Friend.

Yeah, but considering Amano did the initial designs, look how far they deviated...:)

Can you imagine having to animate in Amano's style? That'd be painful and almost impossible with a budget for a mid-80's TV series.

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The January 2003 ruling says that Mainichi paid "5,500,000 yen per episode as an expense of a production in the animation movie," which gave Mainichi the exclusive right to broadcast SDF Macross in Japan for 2 years.  This was based on their agreement with Tatsunoko Productions (TP) made in September 1982.  That was because TP were the copyright owners of the material since they had been paying all production expenses out of pocket since May of that same year.

And, in turn, Tatsunoko parceled off much of the animation duties to the "lowest bidder*" in order to keep as much of the money as possible.

At least, that's my opinion.

*the lowest bidder being Animefriend, who probably produces sheap, yet crappy, work.

IIRC- Studio Nue (or Artland) probably produced some of the best animation you'll see early in the series. Simply because they were the creators and wanted their baby to look as good as possible, although time constraints considerably dulled their attention to detail and quality later in the series.

The next step down is Tatsunoko themselves. A more experienced company with skilled animators, yet lacking the heart and desire that drove Studio Nue. In the end, the simple inability of Tatsunoko's animators to correctly interpret Studio Nue's intent led to minor consistency errors, along with the expected continuity errors.

Animefriend got tossed the rest of the animation, possibly after it was decided to re-lengthen the series to 36 episodes. Their quality was sub-par, and animation, proportion and simple artistic mistakes are readily evident.

In the end, the original macross series is a frankenstein monster that has it's great, it's good and it's bad parts.

I don't know when this whole thing about Animefriend being the crap studio began, but I would like to see the source of this information. I've tried to set the record straight several times, but I admit I don't have all the facts.

To start with, Studio Nue isn't actually an animation studio, it is a creative agency which outlines projects which are then pitched to others so they can get made.

In this case, Nue did all the pre-production and Tatsunoko Pro was supposed to take care of the animation.

Now, it is my belief that Animefriend did its job just fine, but notice in the credits of episodes such as "Spacefold" (the first crappy-looking one), the studio credited is actually "Star Pro". No keyframe artists are credited, as I recall (possibly to avoid death-threats by MW members like myself 20 years down the line..?). I think Star Pro was just a cheap overseas studio, which took care of the outstanding bulk which couldn't have been made with the debts Tatsu and Nue were carrying.

By the way, you can't even tell that Animefriend worked on DYRL, can you? But they did. Therefore, it is not Animefriend who did the ugly episodes, for the record.

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Oh, and as for Korean studios.... Hello, heard of Macross Zero??

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The issue wasn't budget so much as time restraints. The Macross Production schedule didn't allow for Big West's chosen studio (Artland wasn't it?) to do the full work load, so they had to seek out help (Tatsunoko, and in turn, animefriend).

yeah, i think originally it was supposed to be Artland.

IIRC, it was both Artland and Studio Nue originally. What had happened was Haruhiko Mikimoto wanted to join onto the Macross project that Kawamori was starting (and Mikimoto had been a SN staffer for a short time), and so when he signed on, someone involvedn in the project invited Artland in as well.

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Remember kiddies:  Say "NO!" to Korean animation studios.

Well, that's not entirely fair. Maybe in the 80's and early-90's it was prudent to say "no" to Korean animation studios. But several notable projects have come out recently which shows that Korean studios are starting to release quality projects.

Well, that's what I meant, during the 80s, on low budgets. They've definately come a long way, though... But so has the entire animation industry. (Hmm.. Who exactly animated GI Joe? They really suck.)

Well, unless you consider North Korean animation...

http://www.robpongi.com/pages/combofrakkINGUSAHI.html

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Studio Nue did the story and mecha designs.

Mikimoto did the character designs. Mikimoto was an employee of Artland.

Tatsunoko Productions managed the overall production of the television show.

Artland shared the animation work with Animefriends.

This is all from the findings of fact in the court judgment of January 20, 2003. The info about Artland and Animefriends working jointly on the animation is in the section regarding the "concrete work" of the television animation, third paragraph.

Nevertheless, I believe Renato's account about (at least some of) the badly done episodes being done by studios other than AF. I assume that for the work that Artland couldn't do, Animefriends did some of the work itself and subcontracted some of it with other studios. (It could also be that TP contracted direclty with the outside studios instead of having Animefriends do it.)

Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that SN did not do any animation, but Art Land did.

Edited by ewilen

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Oh, and as for Korean studios.... Hello, heard of Macross Zero??

Wasn't someone supposed to cough the name "Macross Plus"? :ph34r:

FV

They are Korean? What's the name of the studio?

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One of the mistakes that I really noticed was in episode 32 of the orginal Macross; the CF-1 in a couple of scenes had 3 laser turrents on the head. This has to be a mistake, right? It couldn't be the "VF-1R" from R*******.

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Studio Nue did the story and mecha designs.

Mikimoto did the character designs. Mikimoto was an employee of Artland.

Tatsunoko Productions managed the overall production of the television show.

Artland shared the animation work with Animefriends.

This is all from the findings of fact in the court judgment of January 20, 2003. The info about Artland and Animefriends working jointly on the animation is in the section regarding the "concrete work" of the television animation, third paragraph.

Nevertheless, I believe Renato's account about (at least some of) the badly done episodes being done by studios other than AF. I assume that for the work that Artland couldn't do, Animefriends did some of the work itself and subcontracted some of it with other studios. (It could also be that TP contracted direclty with the outside studios instead of having Animefriends do it.)

Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that SN did not do any animation, but Art Land did.

Don't forget the part that says TP paid for the whole thing.

From Shyowa 57 (1982) May, onward, it is the time to participate in making the animation movie.  The plaintiff paid money to Anime Friend, the defendant, Studio Nue, and Art Land for their work.

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Remember kiddies:  Say "NO!" to Korean animation studios.

Mospeada was done by Anime Friend.

Yeah, but considering Amano did the initial designs, look how far they deviated...:)

Can you imagine having to animate in Amano's style? That'd be painful and almost impossible with a budget for a mid-80's TV series.

Amano? Really? I didn't know that. Amano as in the Final Fantasy guy and the Vampire Hunter D guy? For an 80s movie I thought the Vampire Hunter D movie was ok - but definitely not up to showing off Amano's illustrations lol. And that was for a full leangth feature movie - if it was done on a tv budget Amano's D would have turned in his undead grave i'm sure.

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Macross Plus, Macross Zero, Wonderful Days, were all Korean?

More power to my homeland!

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Studio Nue did the story and mecha designs.

Mikimoto did the character designs. Mikimoto was an employee of Artland.

Tatsunoko Productions managed the overall production of the television show.

Artland shared the animation work with Animefriends.

This is all from the findings of fact in the court judgment of January 20, 2003. The info about Artland and Animefriends working jointly on the animation is in the section regarding the "concrete work" of the television animation, third paragraph.

Nevertheless, I believe Renato's account about (at least some of) the badly done episodes being done by studios other than AF. I assume that for the work that Artland couldn't do, Animefriends did some of the work itself and subcontracted some of it with other studios. (It could also be that TP contracted direclty with the outside studios instead of having Animefriends do it.)

Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that SN did not do any animation, but Art Land did.

Don't forget the part that says TP paid for the whole thing.

From Shyowa 57 (1982) May, onward, it is the time to participate in making the animation movie.  The plaintiff paid money to Anime Friend, the defendant, Studio Nue, and Art Land for their work.

Incorrect. TP didn't pay for the preproduction work on the lineart, either before or after the fact. (This is why they lost the first case). TP also didn't pay for the preproduction work on the story. (The legal significance of that fact has not yet been tested.)

TP did directly pay the production costs, although I'm not aware of any publicly-available accounting of what they were. Edit: Even saying that TP "managed the overall production of the TV show" is a bit of an overstatement on my part. They footed the bills and handled some of the production. According to the court findings, Noboru Ishiguro oversaw the entire production of the TV show.

Edited by ewilen

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Studio Nue did the story and mecha designs.

Mikimoto did the character designs. Mikimoto was an employee of Artland.

Tatsunoko Productions managed the overall production of the television show.

Artland shared the animation work with Animefriends.

This is all from the findings of fact in the court judgment of January 20, 2003. The info about Artland and Animefriends working jointly on the animation is in the section regarding the "concrete work" of the television animation, third paragraph.

Nevertheless, I believe Renato's account about (at least some of) the badly done episodes being done by studios other than AF. I assume that for the work that Artland couldn't do, Animefriends did some of the work itself and subcontracted some of it with other studios. (It could also be that TP contracted direclty with the outside studios instead of having Animefriends do it.)

Anyway, the point I'm trying to make is that SN did not do any animation, but Art Land did.

Don't forget the part that says TP paid for the whole thing.

From Shyowa 57 (1982) May, onward, it is the time to participate in making the animation movie.  The plaintiff paid money to Anime Friend, the defendant, Studio Nue, and Art Land for their work.

Incorrect. TP didn't pay for the preproduction work on the lineart, either before or after the fact. (This is why they lost the first case). TP also didn't pay for the preproduction work on the story. (The legal significance of that fact has not yet been tested.)

TP did directly pay the production costs, although I'm not aware of any publicly-available accounting of what they were. Edit: Even saying that TP "managed the overall production of the TV show" is a bit of an overstatement on my part. They footed the bills and handled some of the production. According to the court findings, Noboru Ishiguro oversaw the entire production of the TV show.

Pre-production story work on a series usually only consists of a couple of pages outlining the direction of the first few episodes. Much different from how movies are done, which have a script before hand. For a TV series writers are hired as part of the production as they are a major expense. But, just to reiterate what you said we don't know the legal significance of all of that yet.

Noboru Ishiguro, was employed by Tatsunoko Prod. through Anime Friend.

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TP didn't pay for the preproduction work on the lineart, either before or after the fact. (This is why they lost the first case). TP also didn't pay for the preproduction work on the story. (The legal significance of that fact has not yet been tested.)

TP did directly pay the production costs, although I'm not aware of any publicly-available accounting of what they were. Edit: Even saying that TP "managed the overall production of the TV show" is a bit of an overstatement on my part. They footed the bills and handled some of the production. According to the court findings, Noboru Ishiguro oversaw the entire production of the TV show.

Pre-production story work on a series usually only consists of a couple of pages outlining the direction of the first few episodes. Much different from how movies are done, which have a script before hand. For a TV series writers are hired as part of the production as they are a major expense. But, just to reiterate what you said we don't know the legal significance of all of that yet.

Noboru Ishiguro, was employed by Tatsunoko Prod. through Anime Friend.

1. Noboru Ishiguro wasn't employed by Animefriends or TP. If he had been employed by either of them, the second judgment would have ruled that TP had full author's rights including moral rights to "Super Dimension Fortress Macross". He did receive compensation through Animefriends, which the court considered evidence of Ishiguro's "promise or undertaking to participate" in the production. Since the court considered Ishiguro to be the author of "Super Dimension Fortress Macross", his promise to participate fulfilled one of the two conditions necessary for TP to obtain © of the TV show. The other condition was that TP was found to the "maker" of the show, since it directly took on the economic costs and risks of production.

However, since Ishiguro was not an employee of TP, either directly or indirectly, he (or possibly his actual employer) is considered the Author of the show, with moral rights.

Please refer to http://www.maxlaw.co.jp/e/ipclw/03autumn.pdf (IP/Cyberlaw Watch, 2003 Autumn).

2. Whatever preproduction work "usually" is, the court's findings of fact in the first case explicitly describe how the scenario was developed and the series was planned out before TP's involvement. The circumstances under which the final scripts were written may or may not be relevant to a legal case. However, as far as the line art is concerned, the court explicitly rejected the notion that Studio Nue received compensation for transfer of copyright from TP, or that Studio Nue engaged in an open or tacit declaration of copyright transfer.

In any case, this is all irrelevant to the this particular thread. If you would like to further discuss the legal issues, I suggest we take this to the pinned debate thread.

Edited by ewilen

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