Pokémon: The First Movie Screenwriter to Receive Lifetime Achievement Award

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The many directors and writers who have worked on the Pokémon series have gone mostly unnoticed by the general fandom. Since the franchise is based in Japan, and it is a series mostly aimed at kids, many of the creative people who actually work on the multibillion-dollar franchise don’t get their moment in the spotlight.

It may be long overdue, but the screenwriter for Pokémon: The First Movie – Mewtwo Strikes Back will soon receive posthumous recognition for his contribution to the series. The award will be presented at next year’s Tokyo Anime Award Festival.

Takeshi Shudo was a Japanese screenwriter who worked on multiple anime series, but is most famous for writing for the Pokémon anime in the early years. He was also credited as the writer for the first three movies, which includes Pokémon: The First Movie. He passed away in 2010. He will be receiving the lifetime achievement anime award at the 2020 Tokyo Anime Award Festival.

The late Hisao Shirai, who was the director of Photography for the Pokémon anime and movies for years, will also be receiving a posthumous lifetime achievement anime award at the festival. Shirai passed away earlier this year.

It is satisfying that the years of work in the franchise has been given the respect it deserves. The early Pokémon anime were instrumental for the franchises massive success; like many others, we were obsessed with it as children. The First Movie continues to be a fan favorite, with many fans praising Mewtwo’s complex motivations in the original Japanese translation (perhaps less so in the dub translation).

Below is the full list of recipients, as presented by Crunchyroll.

  • Shoji Sato, Producer, Future Boy Conan
  • Junzo Nakajima, Producer, Heidi, Girl of the Alps
  • The late Takeshi Shudo, Screenwriter, Pokémon the Movie – Mewtwo Strikes Back, Mewtwo Strikes Back Evolution
  • The late Kazuko Nakamura, Animator, Astro Boy, White Snake Den
  • The late Hisao Shirai, Director of Photography, My Neighbor Totoro, Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie, Pokémon TV anime
  • Akiko Koyama, Color Design, Little Women, Soul Eater (episodes 14 and 22)
  • Michio Mamiya, Composer, Gauche the Cellist, Grave of the Fireflies
  • Masako Ikeda, Voice Actor, Maetel in Galaxy Express 999, Sharon in Space Brothers
  • Seiki Co., Ltd., for precision filming equipment used in animation, the company is dissolved

The Tokyo Anime Award Festival 2020 will be held in Ikebukuro, Tokyo, from Mar. 13 to 16.