During his summer vacation last year, Zombie Zoo Keeper aka a 9-years-old boy produced the art collection ZOMBIE ZOO as a research project. He began selling the pixel art as NFTs (Non-Fungible Tokens) with the support of his mother, artist Emi Kusano, and celebrities such as STEVE AOKI purchased the NFT artwork.
Zombie Zoo Keeper has created 209-pixel art pieces and made them available on the NFT marketplace OpenSea as of January 24. He was then named to the “2021 Forbes JAPAN 100” list, and according to TOEI ANIMATION, he immediately “become the face of Japan’s ‘NFT Art Scene.'”
So, here’s what we know about this unique anime project.
Zombie Zoo: Toei Animation Took the Ultimate Project!
Toei Animation, the studio behind anime masterpieces like Mazinger Z, Dragon Ball, Sailor Moon, and One Piece, is broadening its NFT activities by collaborating with many artists to create animation franchises based on their artworks. The 60-year-old Japanese company announced the development of Zombie Zoo, its first collaborative project, in January.
The anime is based on an NFT collection by Zombie Zoo Keeper, a nine-year-old artist, and is Japan’s first NFT-based animation effort. This spring, we’ll get the first glimpse.
The project stands out because of its young creator, in addition to being a unique crossover between NFTs and anime. According to the studio, the Toei Animation has brought numerous children’s animations into the world through the hands of adult producers, but the children themselves are the primary creators of this project.
The 60-years-old studio established this initiative to encourage and develop cartoons that reflect children’s natural inventiveness. This wonderful initiative would share the beauty and delights of children’s creativity as it spreads around the world thanks to technological advancements and the internet.
Zombie Zoo: a Wonderful Young Artist!
In 2021, Zombie Zoo Keeper launched his NFT project as a summer school homework alongside his mother, multimedia artist, and singer Emi Kusano. Since then, the Zombie Zoo horde has expanded to 212 pieces of pixel art created on an iPad, all of which have sold out swiftly on the OpenSea marketplace.
For his effort, the aspiring artist received critical acclaim, becoming an NFT star and making the Forbes JAPAN 100 list in 2021.
The 9-year-old artist stated, “I’m overjoyed that a dream I’d been discussing with my mom every day, that of making an anime about capturing zombies, has come true!” The announcement made Zombie Zoo Keeper beam. “It’s fantastic that I get to work with adults and creative experts as a kid.”
Zombie Zoo: What Will Be the Release Date of the Anime?
Toei’s three main priorities for the project are “Children’s creativity” x “Technology & Internet” x “Content production,” whose “synergy” will “support and develop animations that depict children’s creativity as it is.”
This spring, the anime project ‘Zombie Zoo’ will be released. Toei Animation has revealed that the launch date for the Zombie Zoo anime project will be announced in May 2022.
Who Are Involved in the Production?
On Thursday, May 5, 2022, the official website of Toei Animation NFT mixed media animation project Zombie Zoo revealed the character designs and team. The anime is based on the same-named NFT art collection by a 9-year-old boy named Zombie Zoo Keeper.
The character design designs were on exhibit at the “NFT FESTA 2022 SPRING” metaverse space from April 29 to May 5, 2022. Along with the announcement, the live-action segment was also released.
The original artist, Zombie Zoo Keeper, is part of the main production team. YP (YURUPPE)will direct the anime, YP has directed music videos for ZUTOMAYO, GReeeeN, Gorilla Attack, and Buyer Client, among others. The characters are designed by Jiro Sameyama (Digimon/Hatsune Miku cooperation).
Young artists have earned hundreds of thousands of dollars by selling their own unique pieces, and the 9-year-old one is just one of many children who have found success in the world of NFTs.
While some may be concerned about children so young participating in the online and high-earning activities, the presence of young artists in the NFT world demonstrates the diversity of artists and the accessibility to opportunities that the sector fosters, there are bound to be many more budding artists who take advantage of this new arm of the art world.