Animation studio Ufotable, who recently produced the first season of the popular Demon Slayer anime, could potentially be in a lot of trouble after charges are levied against it and its president for tax evasion to the tune of 137 million yen.
According to Anime News Network, the Tokyo Public Prosecutor's Office issued formal indictments against Ufotable's founder and president Hikaru Kondo and the studio itself on July 9. The president and the company are accused of failing to pay 137 million yen - more than $1 million USD - in taxes due from the years of 2015-2018. Japanese news organizations are also reporting that the studio is facing a charge of misappropriating funds that were raised at a charity event benefitting victims of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, a violation that carries a potential sentence of up to ten years in prison. Ufotable has issued a statement acknowledging the indictments and states that it believes it has paid the appropriate amount of taxes.
Ufotable has been a studio on the rise in recent years. Founded in 2000 and previously best known for their work on shows like Coyote Ragtime Show and Fate/stay Night: Unlimited Blade Works, as well as their frequent collaborations with video game publisher Bandai Namco, the studio found massive mainstream success with their 2019 hit anime adaptation of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba and its record-breaking film, Mugen Train. The producers of the Demon Slayer anime recently teased that they would make a new announcement about the anime, possibly concerning the premiere date for the upcoming second season of the show, later in July.
The first season of Demon Slayer: Kimetsu No Yaiba is available for streaming on Netflix, Hulu and Funimation, while the Mugen Train movie is exclusively available on Funimation.
Source: Anime News Network