Evangelion 1.0 Nabs Tokyo Fair Top Honor

Evangelion 1.0: You are (Not) Alone has been given the Animation of the Year Award by the organizers of this year’s Tokyo International Fair (TAF). Directed by Hideaki Anno, Masayuki and Kazuya Tsurumaki, 1.0 is the latest installment of the franchise, based on the 1994 manga by Yoshiyuki Sadamoto about a group of teenagers who battle alien invaders with their massive flying robots.

This new animated movie chapter proved to be the most profitable one in Japan to date, raking in $19 million at the box office for distributor Klockworx. A live-action American version of the franchise (written by ADV founder Matt Greenfield) has been in development for several years, with Weta Digital attached to create the visual effects.

TAF, taking place March 27 to 30 at the Big Sight convention center in Tokyo, is showing more signs of growth every year. In 2007, the event featured 270 companies (55 from international outfits) and drew in 107,713 attendees.

The winners of this year’s awards for individual achievement were:

Best Director: Hideaki Anno (Evangelion: 1.0 You Are [Not] Alone)

Best Original Story: Taiyo Matsumoto (Tekkonkinkreet)

Best Screenplay: Keiichi Hara (Summer Days with Coo)

Best Character Design: Atsushi Nishigori (Tengen Toppa Gurren-Lagann)

Best Art Direction: Shinji Kumura (Tekkonkinkreet)

Best Music: Yako Kanno (Aquarion)

Best Voice Actor: Mamoru Miyano (Mobile Suite Gandam 00, Death Note)

Best TV Series: Denno Coil (Madhouse), Tengen Toppa Gurren-Lagann (Gainax)

Best Original Video: Nasu: A Migratory Bird with Suitcase

Best Domestic Feature: Summer Days with Coo

Best Overseas Feature: Ratatouille

TAF honorees also include Helen Huang’s Adventures in the NPM, a Taiwanese short about Taipei’s National Palace Museum, which was award the grand prize in the Nominated Works section. Grzegorz Jonkajtys’ SIGGRAPH 2007 winner Ark and Iranian animator Moin Samadi’s stunning short The Lost Puppet were also selected as Notable Entries. Young-kwang Jo’s Christmas in Taxi took home the Special Award, and the Notable Entry prizes in the Student Category went to Takashi Kato’s The Clockwork City and Guillaume Briet’s BistRobot. For more info, visit www.tokyoanime.jp/en.