• Kyodo


The venerable TV cartoon “Sazae-san,” still drawn frame by frame in the technique known as cel-based animation, will switch to full digital production next month.

The show is the only cel-based anime still broadcast in the nation, according to the Association of Japanese Animations.

“Sazae-san” started partial digital production in 2005. The full transition will begin with the show to be broadcast Oct. 6, while the last cel-based show will be aired Sunday.

Fuji TV, which broadcasts “Sazae-san,” said the switch to digital is intended to provide high-quality images.

Until digital production became the norm in the late 1990s, TV anime was largely made by shooting each scene using transparent cels with hand-drawn characters superimposed on background images. Another popular series, “Doraemon,” went digital in 2002.

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