Hate the anime if you want, but Hideaki Anno’s Studio Khara will not tolerate personal attacks, no matter where in the world they come from.

Few anime releases in history have been bundled with such intense anticipation and high expectations as Evangelion: 3.0+1.0 Thrice Upon a Time. Coming at the end of a nine-year wait since the last piece of Evangelion animation, it not only serves as the conclusion to the 14-year-long Rebuild of Evangelion movie series, but as the endpoint of the entire franchise, which started with the Neon Genesis Evangelion TV series all the way back in 1995.

Inevitably, though, a certain proportion of fans who are so emotionally invested in a piece of media will feel like that investment didn’t fully pay off after seeing it. Unfortunately, some of those who were disappointed in Thrice Upon a Time have been trying to make up the difference by slandering or threatening members of Studio Khara, according to the animation house behind Evangelion.

This week, Studio Khara posted the following statement on its official website:

Thank you for your support of the Rebuild of Evangelion.

We have confirmed cases of slander, threats, and suggestions of criminal activity against individuals related to the film, as well as distorted misconstructions of the film’s content and articles and other media related to it.

This film was a collaborative production created by many staff members, principally at Studio Khara. Our company, in regards to created fiction, sincerely accepts the perceptions, reactions, feelings and opinions related to it.

However, damaging the dignity of people related to the production, making slanderous or threatening remarks against them, or suggesting criminal activity based on individual interpretation and inferences of the film, or it not meeting personal expectations, are things we strongly object to, regardless of circumstances.

Furthermore, in cases of statements which clearly constitute criminal defamation, intimidation, or death threats, we will contact the police if the comments originate from inside Japan, and even for statements originating from overseas we will report the statements to each country’s respective investigative agencies and pursue legal action, including seeking monetary compensation for damages.

▼ Trailer for Thrice Upon a Time

Anime fans who have been around for a while may remember that when the Evangelion TV series ended on a controversial note in 1996, creator/director Hideaki Anno was the subject of an intense backlash that involved dissatisfied fans saying they wished he would die, and the anime itself has always drawn heavily on Anno’s personal struggles with depression. Whether the statement was prompted in response to hurtful comments made about Anno specifically following the release of Thrice Upon a Time, or is a case of Anno, who essentially runs the studio, making the company’s stance clear to protect his staff is unclear, but in any case Khara is showing itself prepared to fight back against against both slander and piracy on a global scale.

Source: Studio Khara via Hachima Kiko
Top image: YouTube/株式会社カラー khara inc.official
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