TMS Entertainment

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Established in 1964 by Ex Mom Productions (A studio mostly known for doing stop motion animation for Rankin Bass) stop motion animator Yutaka Fujioka after his 1st studio bombed (Tokyo Ningyo Cinema), TMS Entertainment (short for Tokyo Movie Shinsha, also credited as TMS-Kyokuchi on occasion) is one of the oldest and most well-known (both in Japan and overseas) producers of Anime in the world. Their most famous works are probably Lupin III and Tiny Toon Adventures. They have also done various other anime, such as Soreike! Anpanman, Sonic X, Detective Conan, Lil Pri, Ulysses 31, Hamtaro and Bakugan Battle Brawlers, and even some full length feature films, such as Akira and Little Nemo Adventures in Slumberland.

Outside of anime, they are also one of the best and most recognized overseas animation studios in the world. Their high quality work first popped up in the early 80's, when they did animation for Filmation's The New Adventures of Zorro (and, of course, knowing Filmation's reputation for cheap animation, it was a sight to see) as well as Di C's cartoons back in the day. Soon enough, Disney and Warner Bros joined the list of clients, giving us glorious animation in shows such as DuckTales and The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh from Disney, and Tiny Toon Adventures, Batman the Animated Series, and, of course, Animaniacs from Warner Bros, on the Japanese side of clients, we have Shogakukan with Detective Conan and Hamtaro, and Shueisha with D Gray Man.

TMS started off as a independent studio when the studio was founded in 1964, but was sold of to Sega-Kyokuchi in 1992 when the studio's founder Yutaka Fujioka left TMS to retire (hence the name of their 1996 to 1999 productions as TMS-Kyokuchi, was renamed to TMS Entertainment in 2000) and again in 2005 during the SegaSammy merger.

In spite of their glory, their foreign workload has meet a sharp decline, thanks to factors such as rising prices (as well as their surprisingly disappointing work after TMS shipped off their own works to cheaper studios in Japan as well as in Korea and China, and the less said about most of the episodes (animation wise) of Spider-Man: The Animated Series or Weiss Kreuz the better, (however the later was a co production with Studio DEEN, which might explain the bad animation). The 2011 earthquake on Japan hasn't helped matters either.

Whatever the case may be, TMS decided to focus themselves mostly on anime (either theirs' or others', See below). The clients they once had have since moved to other studios: Disney opened its own overseas studio in Japan, using them for a while before dumping them in 2004, as well as using other Asian studios, like Toon City and Rough Draft; Di C, in its twilight years, used various other Asian studios after The Littles (Which itself was taken over by Studio Gallop in season three; although Di C did use TMS for some episodes of The Real Ghostbusters and Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog (SatAM fans, please sit down) before being absorbed into The Cookie Jar Group; Warner Bros likewise ended its ties with TMS after Wakkos Wish and Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, instead going for cheaper animation studios like Moi (most of the DC showcase shorts), JM Animation (the Jonah Hex short), Lotto Animation and Dong Woo Animation in Korea and Toon City as well (with Wang Film Productions on occasion). They did reunite with TMS for Green Lantern First Flight and Justice League Doom.

Even with all of these factors, TMS still manages to be ahead of the game with its many animated productions.

They were also one of the minds behind the channel Animax (With Toei Animation, Sunrise and Sony). See also Koko Enterprises/Dong Yang, Seoul Movie and Mizo Planning, South Korean studios owned by TMS.


Units of TMS[edit | hide | hide all]

  • Telecom Animation Film: Founded in 1975 so that TMS can compete in western markets as pure American animation was started to become expensive (as well as rather limited), the studio did not start doing productions until 1977 (said production came out in 1978). Their 1st product was a show called Obake Chan which is very unknown. After that Telecom did a number of episodes of Lupin III series 2, The Castleof Cagliostro, and started production on Little Nemo (which started in 1978 and was finished in 1989). From the 80's and 90's most of their productions were made for US markets (as the western productions from Di C and later on Disney were taking time away from Little Nemo; this was one of the reasons why the movie was taking so long). The studio is known for some of the best animation in history, and also does their own productions outside of TMS as well.
  • TMS Photo:Sometimes known as Toms Photo, founded in 1988 to do digital effects on AKIRA, TMS Photo is TMS's digital effects and coloring unit.
  • TMS Music
  • Studio Sakimakura: A more recent studio, the studio was founded in March of 2011, and has worked on Bakugan (Mechtanium Surge series), Cardfight Vanguard and Brave 10.
  • A-Productions:Founded in 1965 to help out TMS during Fujiko Pro's large work load, A-Pro split off from TMS in 1976 when TMS replaced them with Telecom, from then on A-Pro became Shin-Ei Doga.
  • Koko Enterprises/Dong Yang: They're owned by TMS, but the studios run on their own.
  • Mizo Planning
  • Seoul Movie


Studios founded by Ex TMS staff Members[edit | hide]

  • Shin Ei Doga: After A-Pro split off from TMS, they got 98% of their stocks, 90% of it was sold to TV-Ashai, 8% of it became Shin-Ei Doga. The 2% TMS did not give out to A-Pro was put into Telecom. As of 2010, the studio is now 100% owned by TV-Ashai.
  • KKC and D Asia: Formed by Tetsuo Katayama and Shigeru Akagawa in 1983 because of the way Little Nemo was going, the studio mostly did shows for Di C (but the studio did shows for other studios as well) with their biggest project being The Real Ghostbusters. The studio went down in 2000 due to becoming too expensive for the US to ship off productions to Japan and failing to compete in the anime market. Most of the staff now work for Production I.G.
  • Studio Ghibli: To an extent; Hayao Miyazaki and a few others got their start at Toei.
  • Spectrum: Formed in 1988, the studio's first job was to supervise the Korean studios responsible for Dic's Captain N: The Game Master. The company's first (and only) big break was on Batman: The Animated Series, providing animation to episodes like "Robin's Reckoning Part 1" and to the movie Mask of the Phantasm. The studio also did some other work for Cinar and Di C as well. But, much like KK C&D, they were unable to compete in the anime market and shut down in 1998. Most of their staff, like KK C&D's, now work for Production IG.
  • Walt Disney Animation Japan: Founded by Motoyoshi Tokunaga in 1988 as Michael Eisner was opening up a unit in Japan (after he bought out Pacific Animation Corp.) and was giving him more money to him to run the studio, the studio did works for Disney until 2004 when Disney was getting rid of there traditional animation units (however, Roy E. Disney and John Lasseter did save the Los Angeles units). After that most of their staff members went to work for Madhouse, Studio Pierrot or Production IG. The ones who did stick with Tokunaga went on to become...


Noteworthy staff[edit | hide]

Noteworthy TMS staff members include (also counting their Telecom unit).

executives and producers[edit | hide]

  • Yutaka Fujioka: Founder of TMS, he left to retire in 1992 (some say that he left in 1989 because of Little Nemo's bombing, however he was in a Tiny Toons staff photo, which was shot in 1990, which debunks that. Here's a picture of him, and the full photo; to compare with older pictures of him, here is a photo of him and other TMS staff members during production on Little Nemo; the latter photo is a video, but he is in the very start of the video). He died in 1996.
  • Koji Takeuchi: Came to TMS in 1977 from A-Pro. He is the president of TMS's Telecom unit.
  • Shunzo Kato
  • Tetsuo Katayama: He worked for TMS in the 70's and early 80's and left in 1983 to find KKC and D Asia.
  • Shigeru Akagawa: He worked for TMS in the 70's and eary 80's. Like Tetsuo Katayama, he left TMS in 1983 to work for KK C&D Asia.
  • Motoyoshi Tokunaga: He did some stuff for TMS, then left the studio in 1988 to find Walt Disney Animation Japan, where he stayed until the studio closed down in 2004. After that he founded The Answer Studio.

artists[edit | hide]

  • Toshihiko Masuda: Coming to TMS in 1980, he's mostly known for the Istanbul, Not Constantinople music video of Tiny Toon Adventures. He helped made the Tom Ruegger shows what they are today, and no, he is not related with Junichi Masuda.
  • Nobuo Tomizawa: He came to TMS from Nippon Animation in 1977 for more money, mostly known for being the animation director of The Great Anvil Chorus of Tiny Toons, he was one of the animation directors of Little Nemo, as well as the chief director of Ramen Fighter Miki and The Daughter of Twenty Faces.
  • Sadakazu Takiguchi: Yet he came to TMS in 1983 when a batch of people were leaving TMS to go work for KKC and D Asia or went with Hayao Miyazaki to work on Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, he did not became a director until 2003 when Hiroyuki Aoyama left Telecom to became a freelancer, he has worked on The Daughter Of Twenty Faces and Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (stationed at Telecom of course).
  • Kenji Hachizaki
  • Kazuhide Tomonaga: He came to TMS from Oh! Production in 1978 for more money, mostly known for doing some key animation for The Castleof Cagliostro and Sherlock Hound, as well as being the animation director of Feat of Clay part 2 of Batman the Animated Series; He was the other animation director for Little Nemo as well.
  • Yoshinobu Michihata
  • Hiroyuki Aoyama: He came to TMS in 1980. He left in 2003 to become a freelance staff member for other studios, but came back in 2006 (but still does some freelance work now and then). He's mostly known for The Girl Who Leapt Through Time and Summer Wars for Madhouse and A Letter To Momo for Production I.G.
  • Yuichiro Yano: Came to TMS in 1982, he's mostly known for most of The Great Wakkorotti shorts from Animaniacs (the last one was done by Jon McClenahan and shipped off to Wang).
  • Hayao Miyazaki: Miyazaki came to TMS the 1st time in 1968 through A-Pro from Toei (however, he did so much stuff for Toei, it lasted up to 1971), doing Isao Takahata's Panda Go Panda. He left TMS in 1972 to go work for Nippon Animation because of lack of work, but he came back to TMS through Telecom in 1977, doing stuff like The Castleof Cagliostro and Sherlock Hound, before leaving a 2nd time for a number of reasons (like he did not want Little Nemo to be just a dream, and asked for more money) to go work for Topcraft to do Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind. After that, Miyazaki stole most of their staff and co founded Studio Ghibli. The rest is history.
  • Saburo Hashimoto: He worked for TMS in the 70's up until the early 90's, when he left for Walt Disney Animation Japan where he stayed until it was closed down in 2004. He is now a arts teacher.
  • Keiko Oyamada
  • Sawako Miyamoto: She came to TMS in 1977, left in 1989 for Walt Disney Animation Japan (however, she did do some freelance work for Studio Ghibli's Porco Rosso) but came back in 1994 because of the Direct to Video movies that WDAJ was getting, and no, she is not related with that Miyamoto.
  • Isao Takahata: Takahata came to TMS from Toei through A-Pro in 1968, then left with Miyazaki to go work for Nippon Animation in 1972 He came back to TMS through Telecom in 1977, left with Miyazaki in 1983 to go work for Topcraft, and went with Miyazaki when he co founded Studio Ghibli.
  • Yasuo Otsuka: He came to TMS from Toei through A-pro in 1968 and came To TMS's Telecom unit as A-Pro split from TMS and became Shin-Ei Doga in 1976. However, he did not come to Telecom until 1977 (as Otsuka was supposed to be one of the main executives of Shin-Ei Doga). However, Otsuka wanted to do Lupin III's second series a lot, so he left Shin-Ei Doga and went to Telecom and stayed there ever since. Mostly known for doing key animation on The Castleof Cagliostro and doing early drafts for Little Nemo. He also runs a TMS owned animation school called Anime Juku.
  • Yoshifumi Kondo: Mostly known for Whisper of the Heart from Studio Ghibli, he went to TMS in 1968 through A-Pro. He left for Shin-Ei Doga when A-Pro split off from TMS and became Shin-Ei Doga, after which he left for Nippon Animation, working with Hayao Miyazaki on Future Boy Conan and some other stuff. Then, in 1980, he left Nippon Animation to go back at TMS through Telecom He left Telecom in 1985 because of a sickness he got. When he got better, he went to do contract work for Nippon Animation, but that did not last to long. After that, he went to work for Studio Ghibli, where he stayed until he died in 1998. No, he is not related with that Kondo
  • Teiichi Takiguchi
  • Takashi Kawaguchi: He did a number of things for TMS, then left to become freelance (but still did some stuff for TMS as well).
    • There are 2 knowed Takashi Kawaguchis out there in the world, the later is the Ex-TMS staff member.
  • Hiroaki Noguchi
  • Koichi Suenaga
  • Hisao Yokobori
  • Yuzo Aoki: When he's not as well knowed as Hayao Miyazaki, he is mostly known for keeping Monkey Punch's style in Lupin III when others tend to tone his style down like Toshihiko Masuda (Elusiveness Of The Fog, but that has more to do with the special's budget), Nobuo Tomizawa (Farewell To Nostradamus) and even Hayao Miyazaki (The Castle Of Cagliostro) toned Monkey Punch's style down, however, toning down Monkey Punch's style was still not a bad thing.
  • Yukio Okazaki: He worked at TMS in the 80's. He left in 1989 to work for Walt Disney Animation Japan for a few years before becoming a freelancer.
  • Atsuko Tanaka: Coming to TMS's Telecom unit from A-Pro in 1976, she's mostly known for doing key animation for The Castleof Cagliostro, Sonic X, three episodes of The Daughter of Twenty Faces, Return of the Joker, Galaxy High and several Ghibli movies like Princess Mononoke and Spirited Away while stationed at Telecom.
    • Not to be confused with other Atsuko Tanakas that are out there in the world.
    • Also, as a side note, she was the animation director of several Animaniacs episodes including Taming Of The Screwy[1], Ta Da Dump, Ta Da Dump, Ta Da Dump Dump Dump and Schnitzelbank.
  • Shojiro Nishimi: Sometimes known as Shijiro Nishimi and Shoujirou Nishimi, he came to TMS in 1984, left in 2003 to work at Studio 4°C, and came back to TMS in 2009, as the last thing he did at 4°C was some animated clips to a movie that he did in 2008 but said movie did not came out until 2009.
    • He also did Storyboards for Atlus's Catherine, whose chief animation studio is Studio 4°C. However, he did it along side Toshihiko Masuda and Sawako Miyamoto, who were doing key animation for it were all stationed at Telecom during its animation production.
  • Osamu Dezaki: He came to TMS in 1968 from Mushi and died in 2011 from lung cancer.
  • Osamu Nabeshima: Worked at TMS as early as the early 80's, doing key animation on Inspector Gadget. He is the chief director of Kaitou Saint Tail, Hamtaro, D.Gray-man and Visionaries: Knights of the Magical Light.
  • Masatomo Sudo: Worked at TMS as early as the 1980's, doing key animation on Mighty Orbots. He is the creator of Laura Haruna.

Outside people that still made a impact for TMS[edit | hide]


Noteworthy productions from the 1960's[edit | hide]

  • Big X: TMS's 1st production, the only production that TMS got from Osamu Tezuka when he was still alive, only done by them because Mushi (the studio that most of Tezaka's productions were done by when he was still alive) was full at the time.
  • Obake No Q-Taro: TMS 1st production from Fujiko Pro as most productions came from them until A-Pro split off from TMS in 1977 and became Shin-Ei Doga.
  • Chingo Muchabe: The Series was made in 1967, but it did not aired until 1971. Final anime broadcast in black and white (but not the last one made, which was Umeboshi Denka)
  • Pa-Man: 1st series only, the 2nd series and the movies are done by Shin-Ei Doga. Production was split between TMS and Studio Zero (Fujiko duo's studio)
  • Kyojin No Hoshi
  • Kaibutsu-Kun - Between TMS and Studio Zero.
  • Umeboshi Denka - Between TMS and Studio Zero. Final black and white anime from TMS (Chingo Muchabei was made before Denka, but aired years after)
  • Roppo Yabure-Kun
  • Moomin: Episodes 1 to 26 of the first series, episodes 27 to 65 of the first series and New Moomin are done by Mushi, and Tanoshii Moomin Ikka is done by Telescreen and Visual 80.
  • Attack No. 1


Noteworthy productions from the 1970's[edit | hide]

  • Tensai Bakabon: 1st and 2nd series only, the 3rd and 4th series are done by Studio Pierrot.
  • Panda Go Panda
  • Lupin III: Pilot came out in 1969, 1st series came out in 1971 but bombed, the 2nd series came out in 1977, the series received a 3rd series in 1985 (but is mostly forgotten by many fans) and the franchise's many movies and specials. The 4th series, The Woman Called Fujiko Mine, was released in 2012.
  • Akado Suzunosuke
  • Dokonjo Gaeru
  • Jungle Kurobe
  • Arano No Isamu
  • Karate Baka Ichidai
  • Aim for The Ace
  • Samurai Giants
  • Judo Sanka
  • Hajime Ningen Gyatoruzu
  • Ganba No Boken
  • Hana No Kakaricho
  • Nobody's Boy: Remi
  • Takarajima: A adaptation of Treasure Island
  • The Rose Of Versailles
  • Ganbare!! Tabuchi-Kun!!


Noteworthy productions from the 1980's[edit | hide]


Noteworthy productions from the 1990's[edit | hide]


Noteworthy productions from the 2000's[edit | hide]


Noteworthy productions from the 2010's[edit | hide]

  • Hime Chen! Otogi Chikku Idol Lilpri: 1st series only, the 2nd series (yes, there is a 2nd series) is done by Studio 4°C.
  • A music video from the UK called Cartoon Style Fighting Kids aka It's Tropical: Live action X animation cross breed, produced by in the UK by Elnino and Studio 7-Machine Molle, but the live action was shot in France and the animation is done in Japan by TMS (Telecom Unit), however this video is NSFW due to all the blood shed that goes on in it.
    • Animation Directior: Toshihiko Masuda.
    • Key Animation: Kazuhide Tomonaga, Yoshinobu Michihata, Sawako Miyamoto, Hiroyuki Aoyama, Atsuko Tanaka, Koichi Suenaga.
  • You Are Umasou
  • Cardfight Vanguard
  • Sengoku Otome
  • Anime Mirai:Formaly known as Project A, Anime Mirai is a production of multiple short movies done by a number of studios, all short movies hear are done by the Telecom unit.
    • O-Jii-San No Lamp
    • Buta
  • Toaru Hikuushi E No Tsuioku: Production end only, actual animation for the movie is done by Madhouse.
  • Hal's Flute: Co production with The Answer Studio.
  • Zetman
  • Brave 10: Production end only, actual animation for the series is done by the Studio Sakimakura unit.
  • Justice League Doom: Through Telecom.
  • Code Of Princess: Opening (might be a little NSFW due to lite Fan Service), done through the Telecom unit.
    • Telecom Director: Kenji Hachizaki.
    • Animation Director: Tadashi Shida (Freelancer).
    • Additional Animation Studios under contract for TMS/Telecom: Studio Ace (CGI Animation).


Other Projects TMS (or their subdivisions Telecom and TMS Photo) had a hand in:[edit | hide]


TMS Entertainment provides examples of the following tropes:
  • Animation Bump: Like most studios in Japan, the work of the chief studio (in this case TMS) tends to be shiped off to other studios from time to time, one studio in particular (Telecom) tends to do such gorgeous animation. It's also one of the reasons why most of their western productions are done by them. Telecom still ships off to other studios (like with Lil Pri), but not as often like other Japanese studios.
    • Other commonly praised studios that TMS did use include Studio Jungle Gym (They're sometimes off key, but there are the closest studio TMS uses that is close to Telecom's quality, The studio worked with TMS on Hiroyuki Aoyama's A Ditch In Time of Tiny Toon Adventures and Toshihiko Masuda's Clown And Out of Animaniacs, they also worked on other TMS shows as well like Hamtaro (watch episodes 27, 32 and 37)).
    • Nakamura Productions (which tended to stay on model), the studio provided animation for Nobuo Tomizawa's Buster Bunny Bunch and Yakko's World (and the cold ending to Cutie And The Beast as well, Cutie And The Beast itself was shiped off to Anime Spot under contract), as the 2 episodes tend to use the Warner Bros model sheets rather then the ones made by Toshihiko Masuda and Kazuhide Tomonaga (as why The Warners and the Tiny Toons gang tend look thiner and a bit taller (depending on the character) then the rest of the studios that worked on both shows)).
    • Oh! Production is also one of the better outsource studios along side Studio Jungle Gym and Nakamura Pro., the studio worked with TMS on Lupin VS The Clones and Toshihiko Masuda's Take Elmyra Please.
    • Mook DLE was also another studio hired by TMS to animate another Tiny Toon Adventures episode (Hisao Yokobori's "Test Stressed"). However, there were times when things went Off-Model (like in the opening to the second short when Furball is in the cat museum with Sylvester), making the studio not as good as either Studio Jungle Gym, Oh! Production or Nakamura Pro.
  • Animation Wars: TMS vs Spumco.
  • Author Appeal: Their western productions, just comepare them to say AKOM or Freelance Animators New Zealand and you understand why.
  • Cash Cow Franchise: TMS's western productions (mostly the stuff TMS did with Warner Bros), on the anime side, we have Lupin III, Bakugan, Anpanman and Detective Conan.
  • Conspicuous CG: Bakugan and Lil Pri have this IN SPADES!
  • Iconic Logo
  • Limited Animation: Justified throughout the 60s and 70s as practically everyone, even Disney, was doing it due to incredibly low budgets; However it is still the norm for the studio's anime productions (like most anime productions that are made), though they fare much better than others (With some exceptions as shown below).
  • Off-Model : Anything TMS ships off to Tokyo Kids's D unit (a number of the later episodes of Hamtaro were shiped off to them under TMS's contract), the C unit's not that bad, on par with Anime Spot and Ajia Do, as Tokyo Kid's C unit did the Lake Titicaca song on Animaniacs, but TMS rarely gets to use them, the B unit only works on action shows, but tend to be reserved by other studios, the A unit does not do outsourcing (often that is), and the less said about their E unit, the better.
    • The same goes for most of the stuff that TMS ships off to Korea and China (like Hisao Yokobori's HMS Yakko, most of which was shipped off to Mizo Planning in South Korea.
    • As for some of the shows themselves, Kenichi, Sonic X, Hamtaro and Bakugan are the more recent offenders; mainly due to horrid outsourcing.
  • The Dark Age of Animation: The studio got their start in this era in 1964.
  • The Renaissance Age of Animation: This is the studio that started this era of animation thanks to Ulysses 31.
  1. which was shipped off to Actas under TMS's contract
  2. Others by Wang, AIC and Toei
  3. Including Wang, AKOM, Dai Won, Pacific Rim Animation, Hinton Animation Studios and Island Animation