Arson at Kyoto Animation Studio
News of a suspected arson at one of Kyoto Animation’s buildings just after 10:30am on Thursday. NHK has reported that 33 people have been confirmed dead and that the suspect, in his 40’s, “...was reportedly seen pouring a flammable liquid inside the building before it went up in flames.” It is reported that another 30-40 people were injured in the fire. The suspect was taken into custody and was reported being treated at a nearby hospital. The Kyoto Fire Department extinguished the fire and completed rescue efforts and cleared the building.
Kyoto Animation, established in 1981, is known for numerous popular series, including “K-On”, “The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya”, and “Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid.” The studio has been referred to as the first successful animation studio outside of Tokyo.
Fans, conventions and members of the industry have voiced their support for the victims, sharing their love for KyoAni’s various projects. American distributor Sentai Filmworks has started a GoFundMe campaign to help support the studio and employees in rebuilding. Sentai and it’s employees were greatly affected by Hurricane Harvey in 2017 and the subsequent flooding that occurred in Houston, Texas.