Kenji Itoso

Animation Director, Dean and Professor at Osaka Seikei University, Faculty of Arts.

Kenji Itoso is a force to be reckoned with in the animation industry. A director, entrepreneur, and investor with a boundless creative spirit, he defies traditional boundaries and consistently pushes the envelope with his innovative projects and visionary leadership.

About Kenji Itoso

Online School of Anime Is Supervised and Led by Animation Legend

Miyazaki's Apprentice to Global Trailblazer

Born in Hiroshima, Japan, Itoso's passion for animation was evident from a young age. While in university, he honed his skills on commercial animation projects and showcased his talent as a manga artist. In 1998, he was accepted into Studio Ghibli's prestigious Tobukodai Village Camp, where he apprenticed under the legendary director Hayao Miyazaki, a pivotal experience that shaped his artistic vision.
Seeking broader horizons, Itoso ventured overseas, where his career took on an international dimension. He directed and produced a diverse range of projects, including the original anime "Coruboccoro," which received support from the Tokyo Metropolitan Government. His work has been showcased at prestigious events such as the Cannes Film Festival, cementing his reputation as a rising star in the global animation scene.
Itoso is equally passionate about education. At the age of 32, he became a professor at Osaka Seikei University, where he revolutionized the curriculum by introducing industry-academia collaboration and providing students with hands-on learning opportunities. His dedication to fostering the next generation of animators is a testament to his commitment to the industry's future.
Itoso's work has garnered numerous awards, including the Grand Prix and International Award at the METI-sponsored CMT Awards, the Tokyo Anime Award, and the Hokkaido Governor's Award at the Yubari International Fantastic Film Festival. Recognized as a New Artist by the Agency for Cultural Affairs in 2006, he continues to receive widespread acclaim for his groundbreaking contributions.


  • Studied under Hayao Miyazaki at Studio Ghibli
  • Contributed to iconic anime franchises like "Yu-Gi-Oh!" , "Attack on Titan", "Fire Force", "Mcross Δ" and so on.
  • Collaborated with Satoshi Kon on "Dreaming Machine"
  • Created, wrote, and directed "Santa Company," retaining 100% copyright ownership
  • The Santa Company project successfully raised 850 million yen (approximately 8.2 million USD in 2014) through crowdfunding, setting a Guinness World Record.