symbv wrote:The twist is that, as I mentioned in my previous post, this time it seems that it was not Bandai Namco who asked for a new show. All they asked is a new game, but the game-maker wanted a show to go with the game, hence the new show.
yeah I saw that. Still, it's telling they already have toy prototypes ready in such swarms (neither Macross or Eva has nothing on this scale pre-launch these mere prototypes show - Gunpla is huge biz and IIRC consists of 70-90% of Japan's yearly plamo sales so it's BIG).
Wut. This is common lore. Even wikipedia mentions it
Gundam was not popular when it first aired, and was in fact cancelled before the series was intended to end. The series was originally set to run for 52 episodes and was cut down to 39 by the show's sponsors, which included the original toymakers for the series. However, the staff was able to negotiate a one month extension to end the series with 43 episodes.
When Bandai received the licensing to the show's mecha, however, things changed completely. With the introduction of their line of Gundam models, the popularity of the show began to soar. The models sold very well, and the show began to do very well in reruns and even better in its theatrical compilation. Audiences were expecting another giant robot show, and instead found MS Gundam, the first work of anime in an entirely new genre, the mecha drama or the 'real robot' genre as opposed to the 'super robot' genre.
Bandai and other toy firms used to have huge grip of control over anime world (which also explains why most old mecha anime are little more than glorified toy commercials and thus not much different from Pokemon) though during late-90s record business took over as main sponsors.
This is why Anno designed EVAs the way they were designed, he wanted to create mechas that would be impossible to turn into succesful toys and thus he hoped to get free from control toy firms imposed upon his creativity. He was succesful as no one believed Eva toys could be a hit and thus toy makers did not have any notable "executive meddling" with original Eva. With Gundam it's occasionally painfully obvious the random enemy mecha of the week was thrown in only to boost toy sales.
It used to be completely normal for Bandai or some other company coming up with new robot toys and then get anime made simply to market them - this holds true for Gundam franchise too to quite the extent. It's not really any different from shows like Bakugan being made for kids to buy toys or some late-night fanservice show made to sell dakimakuras to otaku. Simple business.
Anno had this to say about it back in the day
"At the planning stage, director Hideaki Anno is reported to have said, "With recent robot anime series there have been too many instances of toy makers sticking their big noses in from the design stage so they can get a spec that is easy to turn into a toy. I don't want any interference from toy makers, so I'm going to design a robot that just cannot be turned into a toy."
Well for some reason I'm not surprised