Anime Vice News

Director Satoshi Kon Dies at 46

We'll never forget the brilliant director's psychological dramas.


Word began popping up around Twitter yesterday early afternoon, but we wanted to wait for solid confirmation before running anything: cutting-edge director Satoshi Kon has unfortunately lost a battle with pancreatic cancer at the young age of 46. Confirmation of the news came from the Twitter accounts of Masao Maruyama of Studio Madhouse and Yasuhiro Takeda of Gainax, both acquaintances of the director and contemporaries. 
 
Kon's films stand above run-of-the-mill anime offerings for the simple fact that, had they been made as live-action, effects-driven psychological dramas, they'd still have been brilliant works. He specialized in a twisting and beautiful form of psychological drama that challenged perceptions of reality for both his characters and the audience. His directorial debut title, 1997's Perfect Blue, made the rounds on the festival circuit and was well-received by critics and audiences alike. Darren Aronofsky liked it so much he bought the film's rights just to use a single scene in his title Requiem for a Dream, and Madonna used clips from it for a music video and concert background projection. His subsequent works Millennium ActressTokyo GodfathersParanoia Agent and Paprika were each stood as monuments to Kon's skill as a director. 
 
He was busy on a new film before his cancer caused him to stop working. The Dream Machine will be released posthumously some time in 2011. Just before he passed, Kon left a message to fans on his website that translates into English as:

 "Full of gratitude for all that is good in the world, I put my pen down. Well, it's time to go." 

R.I.P. Satoshi Kon, 1963-2010
rubberluffyon Aug. 25, 2010 at 9:46 a.m.
I've only seen Perfect Blue, and it was certainly an interesting story.  I can't really call myself a fan of his work, as all I've seen is PB, but this is a sad day.   Perhaps I'll go and watch some of his other work.
Djratcheton Aug. 25, 2010 at 10:12 a.m.
He will be missed. 
 
(Also, you guys kinda repeated yourselves....)
Boddingtonon Aug. 25, 2010 at 10:16 a.m.
Hrm, some kind of technical glitch was making it repeat the text a few times. Fixed now.
YotaruVegetaon Aug. 25, 2010 at 10:56 a.m.
I read he was 47
shelson Aug. 25, 2010 at 11:17 a.m.
I've already seen everything from him and must say that he was a master in what he did,
A great loss to  anime and certainly to the world..
Kraznoron Aug. 25, 2010 at 11:29 a.m.

Really sad news. Great filmmaker, every single one of his films is worth seeing.

NickLotton Aug. 25, 2010 at 11:42 a.m.
 Very sad about this. One of the unique voices in Japanese animation amongst a sea of pandering garbage that anime has devolved into. A huge hole has been left by him.    
Kelleth moderator on Aug. 25, 2010 at 11:59 a.m.
I loved all you're movies R.I.P T_T
WarlordPayneon Aug. 25, 2010 at 12:18 p.m.
Satoshi Kon was like Miyazaki, if I watched something that he made I knew I was in for something special.  This strikes me as an enormous tragedy for the anime industry, when many shows are so formulaic and content to just copy whatever else is popular his really seemed to stand out.
Undeadpoolon Aug. 25, 2010 at 12:22 p.m.
This is terrible! Paranoia Agent was one of the last anime I watched and really enjoyed. We've truly lost one of the great paradigm shifters of anime. 
RIP
FoxxFireArt moderator on Aug. 25, 2010 at 12:35 p.m.
Nice to see this news finally made it to the front page. While I was never a fan of his series. I did recognize the quality behind the work. He deserved to be honored in more than just a forum post.
Bigheart711on Aug. 25, 2010 at 2:25 p.m.
 
He definitely will be missed. R.I.P. :_(
Bunnymanon Aug. 25, 2010 at 3:24 p.m.
Saw him hold a lecture at the Stockholm Film House a few years ago. He was humble and funny.  
I wish everyone who enjoyed his work would have had the opportunity to see him like that. 
Here is a brief account of that most memorable evening-
Thisguyon Aug. 25, 2010 at 3:46 p.m.
I have seen perfect blue, as well as millennium actress. It seems a real shame that a talented person passes away when so young and could offer a lot more to other people R.I.P
DBZ_universeon Aug. 25, 2010 at 3:52 p.m.
RIP
dcfoxon Aug. 25, 2010 at 4:34 p.m.
RIP Satoshi Kon. The world is a sadder place without you.
Papasanon Aug. 25, 2010 at 6:07 p.m.

If anyone at New People in San Francisco is reading this, a special screening of "Paprika" at Viz Cinema is certainly in order, don't you think?
FoxxFireArt moderator on Aug. 25, 2010 at 7:40 p.m.
@Papasan: 
I wouldn't go to that, since it's VIZ; but it's a nice sentiment. Thanks for sharing that bit.
frsty13on Aug. 25, 2010 at 8:43 p.m.
Just re-watched Tokyo Godfathers.  Still among the greatest films I've ever seen.  RIP.
hitsusatsu11on Aug. 25, 2010 at 8:58 p.m.
RIP

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