Complaint 'hidden' in 'Akira' by fed-up animator has been discovered 33 years after the anime's release

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  • Animator
    Person who makes animated sequences out of still images
  • Katsuhiro Otomo
    Japanese manga artist, screenwriter and film director

An animator’s “hidden” complaint in the 1988 classic anime film “Akira” has been discovered by an eagle-eyed viewer 33 years later.

The complaint: Twitter user @HikozaTwi spotted the message on a caution sign attached to a piece of equipment that is seen at the 38-minute mark of the film.

  • “Why do I even have to draw this part! Give me a break! Geez,” the complaint read, per a translation from SoraNews24.





The seminal cyberpunk action film, lauded for its style and painstakingly hand-drawn details, required over 160,000 animation cels from its team of 70 animators.

  • “Akira,” written and directed by Katsuhiro Otomo based on his 1982 manga of the same name, was available for free streaming on YouTube until Dec. 28.

  • Paris Beacon News suggested that the film’s free streaming availability during the holidays in Japan likely led to the discovery of the message as it helped “a greater number of viewers pay more attention to the details.”

  • The film is set in a futuristic "Neo-Tokyo” city decades after a nuclear explosion. The city becomes endangered after biker gang member Tetsuo Shima gains psychic powers and goes on a rampage as his friend and main protagonist Shōtarō Kaneda tries to save him.


“Akira” will be released on 4K UHD Blu-ray™ on Jan. 18, 2022.

Featured Images via @HikozaTwi

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