Russia officially banned the distribution of the iconic 1988 movie ‘Akira’ on July 5, as first reported by Bounding Into Comics.
According to The United Press Service of the Courts of St. Petersburg’s official telegram, the courts honored the prosecutor’s request claiming that the movie could “harm the health and mental development of children.”
Now, after more than thirty years since its release, Akira is on the growing list of anime the country has banned.
Earlier this year, the country also banned other widely popular series such as Death Note, Tokyo Ghoul, and Inuyashiki. The prosecutor’s claim for banning Death Note is similar to that of Akira’s, stating that the series is “potentially dangerous for a modern child.”
The crackdown on isekai anime, specifically, is still at large. Big titles such as Reincarnated as a Slime, Zombieland Saga, and KonoSuba are also part of the expanding anime ban in Russia. The country comes down hard on this specific genre due to the promotion of reincarnation beliefs.
The overall goal of the ban of Akira is to prevent pirate sites from distributing mature content to younger demographics. However, it’s not just specific anime that Russia has put a ban on.
In April of this year, Russia banned Crunchryoll for not “properly rating” certain anime. One of these anime includes Darling in the Franxxx. Apparently, this goes against Russia’s age-restriction law.
Crunchyroll states they’re trying to resolve the issue but there is no progress as of late.
Unfortunately, due to the ban on Akira, it seems like anime fans in Russia won’t be able to watch Katsuhiro Otomo’s work of art. The Silver Scream Award-winning movie is still available on Funimation and Hulu.
For any new anime fans that have a chance to watch Akira, it’s highly recommended that you do so.
In 1988 the Japanese government drops an atomic bomb on Tokyo after ESP experiments on children go awry. In 2019, 31 years after the nuking of the city, Kaneda, a bike gang leader, tries to save his friend Tetsuo from a secret government project. He battles anti-government activists, greedy politicians, irresponsible scientists, and a powerful military leader until Tetsuo’s supernatural powers suddenly manifest. A final battle is fought in the Tokyo Olympiad exposing the experiment’s secrets.
Based on the graphic novel “Akira” by Katsuhiro Otomo. First published by “Young Magazine”, Kodansha Ltd.
©1988 MASH・ROOM/ AKIRA COMMITTEE All Rights Reserved.