Tragic incident of fire at Kyoto Animation Studio shook entire Animation industry worldwide.
A man is being investigated by the Police of Japan for flaming down a renowned animation studio in Kyoto. The fire at Kyoto Animation Studio left 33 people dead and is being recounted as one of the deadliest mass killings in almost 20 years. The 41-year-old suspect who didn’t work for the studio was injured and taken to a hospital for severe burns while pouring gasoline on the studio setting it ablaze. He suffered serious burns on his feet, chest and hands. He collapsed while attempting to flee from the police. Multiple knives were also discovered at the scene.
According to witnesses, the suspect shouted: “Die!” as he overturned the liquid on the building’s ground floor. While the suspect’s motives are not clearly identified, he was quoted as saying “they stole a novel,” insisting his ideas had been plagiarized. The onlookers said, “He sounded he had a huge grudge against the society and he was very angry while talking to the policemen.”
20 women, 12 men and an undisclosed individual died in the fire at Kyoto Animation Studio, followed by 35 people getting injured. Most of the victims were employees of Kyoto Animation who work on movies and TV productions. Fire officials said more than 70 people were present in the building. The country is no stranger to such mass killings. In another such incident, 44 people were killed in a 2001 arson attack on a building in Tokyo’s Kabukicho district. A resident reported the police after hearing an explosion-like sound coming from the studio. According to local media, the fire broke out around 10:30 a.m. local time on Thursday.
Shinzo Abe, the Prime Minister of Japan was left speechless at “gruesomeness of the crime.” He offered condolences to victims with a heartfelt tweet. “The company had received death threats in the past through emails,” said Kyoto Animation’s CEO Hideaki Yata to reporters. He expressed grief for the workers in the industry who had been targeted. He further stated, “They are the people who carry Japan’s animation industry on their shoulders, I can’t bear to accept the fact they are being hurt or losing their lives.”
The well-known studios’ popular works include “Free!”, manga series “K-On!”, the anime TV adaptation of “Haruhi Suzumiya” and “Violet Evergarden” which Netflix picked up in 2018. Kyoto Animation also is known as KyoAni was, found in 1981 produces animations, publishes comics, books, and anime novels. The company has a devoted fan following worldwide.
Anime fans expressed shock, outrage, prayers and mourned for the victims on social media. To help the company rebuild, a crowd-funding site was set-up.