For those of you who aren’t caught up when it comes to Japanese animation studios, David Production is a studio with a good number of series under its belt. That being said, the studio has become synonymous with its most famous work, the anime adaptation of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure.
The studio was founded in September 2007, working as subcontractors for smaller series. Their name is based on the famous biblical story “David and Goliath”.
David’s victory over Goliath through using brains and creativity over brawn is the major theme that the studio felt attracted to. David would also be used as an acronym, meaning “Design Audio & Visual Illusion Dynamics” (which I have to admit does sound pretty cool).
They would receive their chance to head their own production with Ristorante Paradiso in 2008, and work on a handful of other series as well. Some of their biggest series include Captain Tsubasa, Fire Force and Cells at Work!
The studio has also worked on many anime adaptations for video games as well, such as Hyperdimension Neptunia: The Animation, Ensemble Stars!, Monster Hunter Stories: Ride On. In 2014 the studio would become a subsidiary of Fuji TV.
Their biggest development would come in 2012 however when they would begin working on the anime adaption to the famous Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. The studio wrapped up the fifth part of the series, “Vento Aureo”, in the middle of 2019. While fans of the Jojo series are waiting to see any news regarding an anime adaptation of “Stone Ocean”, the sixth part of the series, there’s also plenty of other works to look out for in the future.
While I’ll certainly be going over their work on the Jojo adaptation, I’ll also go over some of their other big series. I’m also going to list out what works that they are confirmed to be working on in the future and the best ways to watch the series they’ve finished.
From Phantom Blood to Vento Aureo
Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure is no stranger to adaptations. The third part of the series, commonly known as the “Stardust Crusaders” arc, was adapted into an OVA series by Studio A.P.P.P. in 1993, one year after it had finished its manga run. The popularity of the arc itself, as well as the OVA series, helped it become one of the most identifiable arcs in the series.
In 2006, just in time for the series 20th anniversary, Studio A.P.P.P. adapted the “Phantom Blood” arc (Part 1 of the series) into an anime film. The film had a limited release in theaters but was never seen again. There is a lot of fan speculation as to why this is, but there’s never been an official explanation.
David Production would begin their adaptation of the famous manga series in 2012. Their anime series would adapt Part 1 and Part 2 (the “Phantom Blood” and “Battle Tendency” arcs respectively) into a two-cour anime.
The final episode of the series would tease an adaptation of the “Stardust Crusaders” arc. They would indeed continue their adaptation of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure with two separate two-cour anime seasons to cover Stardust Crusaders beginning in 2014.
Although “Stardust Crusaders” had no teasers about a continuation, the adaptation for the following part, Diamond is Unbreakable, was announced at the end of 2015 and began running in 2016. Similarly, the adaptation of the fifth part of the series, “Vento Aureo”, wasn’t announced until the middle of 2018 and ran a few months after.
Every adaptation so far has been received very well from fans. Between their faithfulness to the source material and improvements through pacing or with the addition of small details, fans have a lot of reasons to be satisfied.
The usage of Western music in the ending songs and the reveal of them is just one aspect that fans get excited for, with the first season’s usage of Roundabout by Yes leading to a popular meme.
The changing nature of the openings (due to adding sound effects in the final episodes or extra animation showcasing a villain’s powers) is another unique touch that’s garnered love for the studio.
The Big Ones Besides Jojo
If you only know them for their work on Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, then you’re missing out on a lot of their other great work! The first of which is their work adapting the famous Captain Tsubasa series.
Although some would critique the show for cutting some content, the praise of the animation and overall comparison to previous anime works would result in the series gaining a positive reception.
Following this is their work on the unique manga Cells at Work!, which takes place inside a human body and follows anthropomorphized cells inside of it. The series has received praise for its comedy and scientific accuracy, and the popularity of it has led to the announcement of an additional season and a spin-off.
Their next big hit was their work on Fire Force, which is a shonen manga by Atsushi Ohkubo of Soul Eater fame.
In a world where people randomly combust (which is equally awesome and terrifying in an anime) and become Infernals, the Fire Force is tasked with fighting the Infernals while also investigating the cause behind it.
The anime garnered a lot of hype when it debuted, thanks to the incredible visuals and fight scenes.
We do know some of the projects they have slated for the future. The first to be released is going to be a second season to the popular Fire Force, Their next release is their foray into the massive Strike Witches series with Strike Witches: Road to Berlin.
As of this moment, there has not been any announcement of an anime adaptation of the sixth part of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, also known as “Stone Ocean”. The success and blu-ray sales of their adaptive work would lead me to assume that there’s a good chance of them animating this arc in the future.
Then again, it’s possible I might be just the slightest bias since “Stone Ocean” is one of my favorite arcs and it has some of my favorite characters in the series.
For now, we Jojo fans just have to continue waiting as patiently as we can for news about “Stone Ocean”. That doesn’t mean we can’t be excited for the fun projects that David Production is confirmed to be working on though!
The studio has been hitting it out of the park time and time again, and I feel that any work of theirs is worth looking into.
Where to Watch Their Works
- Ristorante Paradiso – David Production’s first series production can be watched on Crunchyroll with the Japanese dub. If you’re interested in the source material, VIZ has compiled where you can purchase the physical and digital versions of the story, as well as its continuation story, Gente.
- Tatakau Shisho: The Book of Bantorra – The anime adaptation of Ishio Yamagata’s light novel series about people dying and turning into stone books can be watched on VRV in both the Japanese or English dub if you have a HIDIVE subscription.
- Ben-To – David Production’s adaptation of Asaura’s light novel series can be watched on Funimation with both the Japanese and the English dub, although the latter option will require premium access.
- Inu X Boku Secret Service – The romantic comedy by Cocoa Fujiwara was adapted by David Production in 2012 and can be viewed on Crunchyroll with the Japanese dub.
- Hyperdimension Neptunia: The Animation – The anime adaptation to the Hyperdimension Neptunia RPG series about anthropomorphized characters representing video game consoles can be watched on Funimation with the Japanese or English dub.
- Monster Hunter Stories: Ride On – An anime based on Capcom’s Monster Hunter Stories RPG. The first 48 episodes of it can be watched on Funimation in the English dub. The remaining 27 episodes are unfortunately not available.
- Cells at Work! – One of the more popular works outside of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, the anime adaptation about anthropomorphic cells can be watched on Netflix in either the Japanese or English dub, but it’s missing the OVA episode. Funimation has both dubs and the OVA episode as well, but you need a Premium subscription to watch the series at all. Crunchyroll meanwhile has the whole series and the OVA available to watch for free, but only in the Japanese dub.
- Fire Force – Another immensely popular series adapted by David Production; it’s available to watch on Funimation with the English dub, but requires a Premium subscription to watch most episodes. Crunchyroll has the show available for free, but only in the Japanese dub.
- Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure – David Production’s biggest work, which I definitely saved for last due to the various options available for watching it. Netflix has recently released the two seasons of the “Stardust Crusaders” arc, meaning you can watch Parts 1-3 with both the Japanese or English dubs on their platform. Hulu has the first four parts of the series available, but only the first two parts have options to let you watch with the English dub. Your last option is Crunchyroll, which has all five current adapted parts but only in the Japanese dub. If you’re more interested in the source material, then VIZ has up to Part 4 translated for subscribers.