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Creator / Shinichiro Watanabe

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Shinichiro Watanabe (born May 24, 1965) is a well-known Japanese anime director.

He likes to mix different opposing styles into his works to create something new—for example, Cowboy Bebop is cowboy space opera mixed with film noir, martial arts, and jazz. Samurai Champloo fuses traditional samurai with hip-hop music and culture. Space Dandy fuses Raygun Gothic and Zeerust with disco music.

Not to be confused with Shinichi Watanabe, the director of Excel Saga.


He has directed the following full-length works:

He has also worked on:

He's also the music producer for Michiko & Hatchin and Lupin III: The Woman Called Fujiko Mine


Tropes found in his work:

  • Anachronism Stew: Used exceedingly well.
  • Author Appeal: MUSIC. Every one of his directed works had some genre (or genres) of music as a major part of the storyline and/or general theme of the series. And among the works where he's credited but isn't directing, he's usually in charge of the music production for the show.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: Taken Up to Eleven in Space Dandy, where every bad guy and alien race is designed by a different artist.
  • Creator Thumbprint: Likes to have a focus on a character's eye.
  • Doing It for the Art: As above, Space Dandy uses different art styles, moods and directing styles for each episode, plus having every bad guy and alien race designed by a different artist.
  • Genre Roulette: Watanabe is well-known for taking many genres and hitting "puree".
  • Production Posse: With composer Yoko Kanno, who has to date composed the soundtrack for four of his directorial works.