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Working in the Anime Industry: A Struggle

The Japanese Animation Creators Association just recently released the results of a survey taken in 2015 of over 750 different people working in the Anime industry in Japan. Coming from an American standpoint, where our entertainers are paid staggering amounts of money, you might think it would be similar for Anime creators, considering how popular the medium is.
You'd be wrong.
Here's a collected set of averages from Kotaku that shows the median salary for each different position in the creation of anime.
Series Director
Average Age: 42 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 540,833 yen ($5,036)
Average Yearly Salary: 6,490,000 yen ($60,437)
Chief Animation Director
Average Age: 43 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 470,000 yen ($4,378)
Average Yearly Salary: 5,640,000 yen ($52,521)
Producer
Average Age: 39 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 451,667 yen ($4,206)
Average Yearly Salary: 5,420,000 yen ($50,471)
Character Designer
Average Age: 38 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 425,000 yen ($3,958)
Average Yearly Salary: 5,100,000 yen ($47,491)
Animation Director
Average Age: 38 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 327,500 yen ($3,045)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,930,000 yen ($36,602)
3DCG Animator
Average Age: 34 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 320,000 yen ($2,980)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,840,000 yen ($35,764)
Episode Director
Average Age: 41 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 316,667 yen ($2,949)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,800,000 yen ($35,391)
Storyboarder
Average Age: 49 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 310,000 yen ($2,887)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,720,000 yen ($34,647)
Art Director (Background Art)
Average Age: 35 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 285,000 yen ($2,655)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,420,000 yen ($31,864)
Color Designer
Average Age: 38 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 278,333 yen ($2,593)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,340,000 yen ($31,120)
Cinematographer
Average Age: 34 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 265,833 yen ($2,476)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,190,000 yen ($29,723)
Production Assistant
Average Age: 30 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 257,000 yen ($2,394)
Average Yearly Salary: 3,090,000 yen ($28,788)
Key Animator
Average Age: 36 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 235,000 yen ($2,189)
Average Yearly Salary: 2,820,000 yen ($26,271)
Inbetween Checker
Average Age: 35 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 217,500 yen ($2,026)
Average Yearly Salary: 2,610,000 yen ($24,314)
Layout Artist/Rough Keyart
Average Age: 38 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 195,000 yen ($1,817)
Average Yearly Salary: 2,340,000 yen ($21,800)
Paint Staff
Average Age: 26 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 162,000 yen ($1,509)
Average Yearly Salary: 1,950,000 yen ($18,167)
2nd Key Animation/Clean-Up
Average Age: 27 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 93,333 yen ($870)
Average Yearly Salary: 1,120,000 yen ($10,434)
Inbetween Staff
Average Age: 24 years old
Average Monthly Salary: 92,500 yen ($862)
Average Yearly Salary: 1,110,000 yen ($10,340)
The people at the top of the pyramid make the most; that's something we can understand universally. However, even at the highest salary, the numbers still pale in comparison to what series directors would be receiving here in the States.
It only gets more depressing as you go down the list, where some of these positions mean that these employees are making less than minimum wage. Considering the amount of work and pressure these people are under, it's a little disheartening to see how little they earn for their efforts.
So, maybe rethink your foray into the industry for now...
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You shouldn't care about the money , your doing something that you like . It's better than doing something you don't like , am I right ?
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No, don't rethink! Happiness is worth more than money. You live a longer healthier life when you chose a career that makes you happy because you'll make it work. That's a fact! Paraphrased but true
I don't think they do it for the money they are doing it because that's what they are good at and what they really wanted to do
This makes me cry. I feel so bad for enjoying something so much when it seems they don't get paid very much. I wonder what the cost of living is like there because if you at the bottom you ain't doing shit with that salary in america. *strugglestruggle*
That's terrible. Anime is a beautiful medium and they deserve much more than that.
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