Anime Director Causes Controversy With Anti-Semitic Tweets

[Image via Funimation]

According to Anime News Network, Recovery of an MMO Junkie anime director Kazuyoshi Yaginuma has been retweeting and liking anti-semitic for years, but recently, he’s started making his views known in English.

Kotaku’s Cecilia D’Anastasio called Recovery of an MMO Junkie her favorite anime of last fall.


Besides Recovery of an MMO Junkie, Yaginuma has worked on a variety of anime shows and movies, including doing key animation on three Naruto flicks and directing several Pokémon Generations episodes.


Besides conspiracies, he’s asked his followers why it was necessary for Nazis to kill mass numbers of Jewish people, questioned whether that atrocity really happened, and questioned the accuracy of Anne Frank’s diary and whether or not it’s fake. (The Dutch Government proved its authenticity decades ago.)


Yaginuma also appeared to doubt Nazi gas chambers on the ground that there are no images of how they worked.


The parent company of Crunchyroll, which streams Recovery of an MMO Junkie issued the following statement:


To which Yaginuma replied:


Signal MD, the animation studio that made Recovery of an MMO Junkie, recently issued a statement on February 16 denouncing Yaginuma’s tweets and saying the director was no longer employed by the studio.

Update February 21 - 6:11 am: The original title incorrectly stated that Yaginuma had subsequently been fired. Instead, he was brought on to direct the anime, which finished its run. The article has been updated to reflect this. Signal MD’s statement can be read below: 

Statement by SIGNAL MD concerning Tweets under the name of whom the director of “Recovery of an MMO Junkie”

It has come to our attention that a series of Tweets under the handle, @yaginuma_san, apparently made by Mr. Kazuyoshi Yaginuma have included anti-Semitic comments. SIGNAL MD wishes to make it clear that it is strongly opposed to and deprecates anti-Semitism and all forms of racism or discrimination.

Mr. Yaginuma was director of the anime “Recovery of an MMO Junkie” produced by SIGNAL MD, has never been our company member and is no longer employed by us.

Assuming the comments which appear under the Twitter handle @yaginuma_san, were indeed made by Mr. Yaginuma, they are not linked to his role as director of “Recovery of an MMO Junkie” and are not supported by SIGNAL MD.

We will continue to create works that are moving and enjoyable, with the philosophy of giving excitement to many viewers and working to create works that satisfy our clients.

Thank you for your support and understanding.


On February 17, Yaginuma tweeted this:


And this, among other tweets:


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About the author

Brian Ashcraft

Originally from Texas, Ashcraft has called Osaka home since 2001. He has authored five books, including most recently, Japanese Whisky: The Ultimate Guide to the World's Most Desirable Spirit.