, established in 1975, is an animation studio best known for adding an almost constant stream of references and shout-outs
to other series in the backgrounds of their shows. This usually manifests itself as writing on blackboards and posters which change with every cut. Also known for having a somewhat minimalist yet oddly stylish bent to their own productions. One of the more divisive anime studios. People either love the style or hate it. Middle ground is rare. Oh, and keep one thing in mind: whether the adapted work was originally a Widget Series
or not, the SHAFT anime
will most likely be one. They were one of the animation studios behind Jayce and the Wheeled Warriors
has been their primary director since 2004, and is responsible for much of their present image.
Note that some fans refer to them as just "Shaft". Do not confuse this with a badass mother
—(SHUT YO' MOUTH
!), or a minor character in two Castlevania
Studio SHAFT solo productions:
Shows for DiC:
Other projects as support include:SunriseOther
Tropes associated with SHAFT:
- Anime First: Puella Magi Madoka Magica is their first-ever original work (read: not based on any preexisting material).
- Deranged Animation: To quote a random blogger: "Whenever I watch a SHAFT anime, I feel like I'm on acid. Not just a little bit of acid, a tanker truck filled with it."
- Design Student's Orgasm
- Enhanced on DVD: Their by-now infamous scrambling to meet deadlines during a show's original airing season generally means improved animation for the eventual DVD release. They've become so notorious for it that this practice of revising art and animation has come to be known as "Shafting", as in "Bakemonogatari was Shafted".
- GIS Syndrome: SHAFT has developed a reputation for this.
- Harem Genre: Most of their series have at most The One Guy.
- Hey, It's That Guy!: Akiyuki Shinbo has directed a good number of SHAFT's productions.
- Hey, It's That Voice!: Hiroshi Kamiya and Chiwa Saito are often present in many of their shows, and sometimes even share the same show. Other Shaft regulars include Ai Nonaka, Aoi Yuuki, Asami Sanada, Chiaki Omigawa, Emiri Katou, Eri Kitamura, Kana Hanazawa, Marina Inoue, Miyu Matsuki, Miyuki Sawashiro, Ryōko Shintani, Ryōko Shiraishi, Takahiro Sakurai, Tomokazu Sugita, Yui Horie, Yuko Goto, Yuu Kobayashi and Yuuichi Nakamura, among others.
- Makes Just as Much Sense in Context: Whenever they stop trying to get some point across...it is as glorious as orthopedic squid panties to behold.
- Medium Blending
- Mind Screw: "Meanwhile at SHAFT..."
- Off Model: Both intentionally and as a side effect of their trademark Schedule Slip.
- Retraux: They'll often add old-time-y film effects or use old-time-y orthography.
- Schedule Slip: They're becoming increasingly infamous for this, due to a company policy of not rejecting work. Though they're generally good at fixing any errors on their TV release come the DVD/BD release.
- Signature Style: Part from the studio, part from Akiyuki Shinbo, but there are a lot of those:
- Unreadably Fast Text
- Unmoving Plaid
- Camera showing whatever instead of the characters that are talking at the moment
- Pictures of real-life objects
- The infamous head-tilt (Now compiled for your convenience◊)
- Art Shift: Frequently for asides or flashbacks, the art style will be drastically different from the show's usual style. Just watch almost any five-minute segment of a Bakemonogatari episode and you'll probably get an example.
- Mundane Made Awesome: SHAFT will often, and for no reason, up the framerate and animation quality immensely, and can focus on incredibly mundane things.
- They also seem to have a thing for huge, mostly empty rooms that are, in fact, totally impractical but look artistic.
- SHAFT likes using stained glass or stained glass patterns a lot.
- Surreal Theme Tune: All of them. Madoka Magica's makes complete sense, you just don't get context until the end.
- Widget Series: Many of their shows are this. Even if the source material isn't a Widget Series, SHAFT's extra layer of weirdness will turn it into one.