Do we have any idea who owns the rights to Sailor Moon?

  • This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn more.
Dec 1, 2020
743
1,844
1,665
30
#1
Who gets the final say? Is it Toei, Naoko/PNP, Kodansha? Is Naoko limited in her ownership?

Was Sailor Moon always going to be a joint project between Toei and Naoko? Who originally came up with the idea for Sailor Moon? Osabu, Naoko? Toei? Bandai? It feels like they all tried to push their ideas onto Naoko during the creation of Sailor Moon but I always wondered if Sailor Moon was created organically or if it was always it the works to be a massive multimedia franchise from the start.

With the leaks that it was Sailor V that was originally going to be animated, perhaps something happened around that point before the creation of BSSM and some sort of new contract was drafted?

It’s all so fascinating and yet we know very little.
 

Tsundereshipper

Aurorae Lunares
Jun 17, 2019
1,367
2,066
1,665
30
#2
Who gets the final say? Is it Toei, Naoko/PNP, Kodansha? Is Naoko limited in her ownership?
I think it’s a 4 way split between Naoko/Osabu, Toei, Kodansha and Bandai. (Since that was the sponser)


Was Sailor Moon always going to be a joint project between Toei and Naoko?
Yes.


Who originally came up with the idea for Sailor Moon? Osabu, Naoko? Toei? Bandai?
Technically Osabu, and he’s the one who ended up pitching the idea to both Naoko and Toei.


It feels like they all tried to push their ideas onto Naoko during the creation of Sailor Moon but I always wondered if Sailor Moon was created organically or if it was always it the works to be a massive multimedia franchise from the start
Because Naoko was only supposed to provide the initial character designs and concepts and then each side was to diverge and do their own thing with these designs and concepts.




With the leaks that it was Sailor V that was originally going to be animated, perhaps something happened around that point before the creation of BSSM and some sort of new contract was drafted?
The story goes that Sailor V itself was Naoko’s original conception but that her editor Osabu got the brilliant idea that a Sentai-Style Magical Girl Team would do even better, he saw the potential that this had all the makings of something big, since Sentai/Tokusatsu style Mahou Shojo had never been done before, so he took his pitch to Toei and Nakayoshi/Kodansha, they consulted with Bandai and saw the potential and the rest is history.
 
Dec 1, 2020
743
1,844
1,665
30
#3
I think it’s a 4 way split between Naoko/Osabu, Toei, Kodansha and Bandai. (Since that was the sponser)



Yes.



Technically Osabu, and he’s the one who ended up pitching the idea to both Naoko and Toei.



Because Naoko was only supposed to provide the initial character designs and concepts and then each side was to diverge and do their own thing with these designs and concepts.





The story goes that Sailor V itself was Naoko’s original conception but that her editor Osabu got the brilliant idea that a Sentai-Style Magical Girl Team would do even better, he saw the potential that this had all the makings of something big, since Sentai/Tokusatsu style Mahou Shojo had never been done before, so he took his pitch to Toei and Nakayoshi/Kodansha, they consulted with Bandai and saw the potential and the rest is history.
This is all very interestin and makes sense. I always thought it must have been a joint venture from the start as quite honestly, usually it takes at least a couple of years for a manga to be adapted into an anime while in Sailor Moon’s case it was pretty much co-current. And for a huge studio like Toei to pick an almost no-name mangaka at the time seemed very.. strange.

I realized recently that though Toei produced many magical girl anime from the 60’s through to the end of the 70’s during the 80’s there was next to nothing in that genre from them. I always thought it was strange that they just willing let Studio Pierrot steal the monopoly from them with anime such as Minko Momo and Creamy Mami.

I guess Osabu must’ve seen an opening to revitalize the genre and pitched it to Toei as you said.

In that case, it’s quite ironic that Naoko is always given the majority of the praise for creating Sailor Moon when in reality Osabu was also pretty instrumental in its creation. It sort of lends itself to the idea that Naoko was probably not as talented of a visionary as some people like to believe. I’m sure she’s very talented in certain aspects but who knows to what degree her input was, drawing aside. I like to believe most of it was her work as the manga definitely has a female gaze about it but.. to what degree?
 
Last edited:

Tsundereshipper

Aurorae Lunares
Jun 17, 2019
1,367
2,066
1,665
30
#5
I like to believe most of it was her work as the manga definitely has a female gaze about it but.. to what degree?
There’s a male gaze to the manga too, don’t kid yourself. That Chibi-Usa’s Picture Diaries short story where Naru’s elementary school aged twin sisters get blatantly sexualized and perved on by Tuxedo Mask?
 

Rika-Chicchi

Staff member
Site Admin
May 7, 2009
39,786
3,126
1,665
#7
There’s a male gaze to the manga too, don’t kid yourself. That Chibi-Usa’s Picture Diaries short story where Naru’s elementary school aged twin sisters get blatantly sexualized and perved on by Tuxedo Mask?
Sexy elements are often seen in her various artworks, & they're obviously intentional, not outta random innocence, & can be interpreted as both male gaze & the self-awareness/consciousness of female sexuality. :)
 

Masquerade

Aurorae Lunares
Nov 22, 2016
1,614
2,153
1,665
#9
Naoko gets the final say on everything since the 2010 revival.
She has to approve international licensing anime and manga deals.
She has to approve manga covers from foreign publishers.
She even gets the final say on translations sometimes (Eternal dubs and subs got screwed with honorifics at her request).
Sailor Moon is a very complicated IP, a lot of international licensors have said through the years that it takes a lot longer than other anime properties.
I know a person who worked in the ADR studio that produced the Brazilian dub for Sailor Moon Eternal. This person had already left the company by the time production started, but they told me their friends who still worked there mentioned the project was waaaay difficult due to requests "made by Netflix." They are used to work with Netflix since they are one of their major dubbing providers in Brazil, but meddling by the IP owners (Toei/PNP) made the project a lot harder than usual.
 
Last edited:

Akari @ria

Luna Crescens
Jun 17, 2017
184
209
165
#11
Who originally came up with the idea for Sailor Moon?
The original idea is from Naoko herself but Osabu like the idea of dress the girls in a sailor suit.

As far as I know, thanks to PNP, Naoko owns the rights of the series.

In that case, it’s quite ironic that Naoko is always given the majority of the praise for creating Sailor Moon when in reality Osabu was also pretty instrumental in its creation. It sort of lends itself to the idea that Naoko was probably not as talented of a visionary as some people like to believe. I’m sure she’s very talented in certain aspects but who knows to what degree her input was, drawing aside. I like to believe most of it was her work as the manga definitely has a female gaze about it but.. to what degree?
It is true that Osabu contributed to some aspects of the story, but the basic ideas were all Naoko's anyway. Naoko and Osabui often sat down to see what to put and what not to put in the manga, what to change and how to change it without hurting the author herself.
By Osabu's own request, the anime could not go on without the author's ideas.

These interviews give some more insight into the processing of the anime and manga

Interviews with Fumio Osano
 

kasumigenx

Aurorae Lunares
Feb 8, 2021
1,999
1,053
1,665
33
www.deviantart.com
#12
I did not get why Bandai sponsored an anime adaptation of an incomplete Clamp manga CLAMP Campus Detectives while while waiting for CCS anime to start while Naoko's other manga outside of Sailor Moon franchise like Cherry Project got none of that treatment.
 

kasumigenx

Aurorae Lunares
Feb 8, 2021
1,999
1,053
1,665
33
www.deviantart.com
#14
Udpate: publisher JBC posted on social media that Naoko disapproved the color scheme of the Brazilian Eternal Edition for the FIFTH time.
It was announced back in 2019, and no volume was released yet. :lol:
I wonder why Kodansha and Bandai seem to treat CLAMP better than her? is it her attitude or that they are more submissive to them.
 
Likes: Masquerade
Jul 5, 2009
10,212
2,042
1,665
Philippines
#15
Udpate: publisher JBC posted on social media that Naoko disapproved the color scheme of the Brazilian Eternal Edition for the FIFTH time.
It was announced back in 2019, and no volume was released yet. :lol:
The color schemes must be so bad or Mama Naoko Sama has a grudge with that publisher. XD
 
Jun 17, 2019
1,367
2,066
1,665
30
#16
I wonder why Kodansha and Bandai seem to treat CLAMP better than her? is it her attitude or that they are more submissive to them.
CLAMP and Naoko do not compare. CLAMP is one of the most legendary manga circles of all time, famous throughout the industry whereas Naoko Takeuchi is nothing but a one-hit wonder. Yes Sailor Moon is a famous worldwide and revolutionary IP as far as anime goes but she can’t have her name just survive on that alone, especially since she’s stopped producing new works herself and Sailor Moon gets more and more irrelevant in Japan by the year. Heck, Sailor Moon has half the popularity it does thanks in large part to Toei/Ikuhara/Sato, Bandai’s merchandising and Osabu himself who was the one who originally came up with the idea in the first place, so it’s legendary status can’t even solely be attributed to Naoko herself.

It’d be like giving all the credit on a group homework assignment to that one kid who was only responsible for a minuscule portion of the project and not acknowledging it as a team effort.

Naoko not only just has Sailor Moon to her name, but she’s not even the IP’s sole contributor to boot! Very different situation from CLAMP.
 
Dec 1, 2020
743
1,844
1,665
30
#17
It feels as though Naoko is just there to collect her pay check at this point. But if that’s all she wanted then why is she so.. obtuse on a micro-scale in regards to the coloring on a Brazilian release, honorifics for Netflix, lyrics for VIZ and yet would let something as abysmal as Crystal Season 1 see the light of day? Being nit picky and delaying things that will effect her bottom line financially and yet not giving a damn about the bigger picture? The only thing I can think of is despite being an excecutive producer for CrysEternal she actually has little say in the production aspect and so exerts her power in what little ways she can? (Like the dubs, etc) and the title of ‘executive producer’ is just a flourish?

It makes sense, then, why the colored manga was unceremoniously cancelled. If she has issues with coloring for the Brazilian manga then it makes a lot more sense that she perhaps wouldn’t feel comfortable with the quality of the colored editions. Especially seeing as coloring is her ‘forte’ so to speak.

I’m so torn on this women. On the one hand I respect her for the work she (in part) created but on the other her decisions post-Sailor Moon baffle me. I can only think that perhaps she is frustrated with her lack of control and as a result fights tooth and nail over the things she does have control over.
 
Jun 17, 2019
1,367
2,066
1,665
30
#18
It feels as though Naoko is just there to collect her pay check at this point. But if that’s all she wanted then why is she so.. obtuse on a micro-scale in regards to the coloring on a Brazilian release, honorifics for Netflix, lyrics for VIZ and yet would let something as abysmal as Crystal Season 1 see the light of day? Being nit picky and delaying things that will effect her bottom line financially and yet not giving a damn about the bigger picture? The only thing I can think of is despite being an excecutive producer for CrysEternal she actually has little say in the production aspect and so exerts her power in what little ways she can? (Like the dubs, etc) and the title of ‘executive producer’ is just a flourish?

It makes sense, then, why the colored manga was unceremoniously cancelled. If she has issues with coloring for the Brazilian manga then it makes a lot more sense that she perhaps wouldn’t feel comfortable with the quality of the colored editions. Especially seeing as coloring is her ‘forte’ so to speak.

I’m so torn on this women. On the one hand I respect her for the work she (in part) created but on the other her decisions post-Sailor Moon baffle me. I can only think that perhaps she is frustrated with her lack of control and as a result fights tooth and nail over the things she does have control over.
I’m still going with my theory that “Naoko” is just being used as a spokesperson/figurehead at this point and the big corporations such as Toei, Bandai and Kodansha are putting words in her mouth in order to deflect all blame off of them.

I mean ffs, this woman doesn’t even have her own personal Twitter! She rarely engages with the fandom or is even out and about in general anime & manga circles. She’s too busy living her retired normie life as a housewife and mother. She’s a far cry from someone like J.K. Rowling or even Natsuki Takaya who are still very much actively engaged with their works and with the fandom. Hell even legendary “Queen of Manga” Rumiko Takahashi has her own PR Twitter account, Naoko doesn’t even have that!

When was the last time she’s directly interacted with the franchise or the fandom at any level? That 1990’s Comic Con where she officially canonized HaruMichi as a lesbian couple? That’s how many years now?

I would take any statements being made about “What Naoko said” with a huge grain of salt.
 
#19
I mean ffs, this woman doesn’t even have her own personal Twitter! She rarely engages with the fandom or is even out and about in general anime & manga circles. She’s too busy living her retired normie life as a housewife and mother. She’s a far cry from someone like J.K. Rowling or even Natsuki Takaya who are still very much actively engaged with their works and with the fandom. Hell even legendary “Queen of Manga” Rumiko Takahashi has her own PR Twitter account, Naoko doesn’t even have that!
Do not forget to add her husband, Yoshihiro Togashi.
 
Likes: kasumigenx
Sep 6, 2014
2,696
2,347
1,665
#20
I’m still going with my theory that “Naoko” is just being used as a spokesperson/figurehead at this point and the big corporations such as Toei, Bandai and Kodansha are putting words in her mouth in order to deflect all blame off of them.

I mean ffs, this woman doesn’t even have her own personal Twitter! She rarely engages with the fandom or is even out and about in general anime & manga circles. She’s too busy living her retired normie life as a housewife and mother. She’s a far cry from someone like J.K. Rowling or even Natsuki Takaya

.
Being involved with her IP and not engaging with her fandom online aren't mutually exclusive. I'm not even sure what made you reach that conclusion

We should thank our lucky Sailor Stars that Miss Takeuchi isn't Japanese JK Rowling