Long story short, the answer is yes and no. Japanese animation, or anime, is a different genre from other animated movies and series not only because of its distinct style, but also because its target audience are not just children.

History of Early Anime
The first anime film was released sometime in 1916, but it was only 5 minutes long and the drawings were sketched using chalk that were redrawn in between takes. However, this is still unreliable because early Japanese films in general were stored in reels that were dismantled, and some were also destroyed during earthquakes and bombings. The distinction of the first anime film released commercially goes to Dekobo Shingacho – Meian no Shippai. It was followed by several short anime films that were the works of Junichi Kouchi, Oten Shimokawa, and Seitaro Kitayama.

The use of chalk was not productive, so the animators turned to paper cutouts for silent 2d stop-motion anime. Even then, most of the themes will seem familiar to fans today, such as folk tales and samurai life.

In the 1930s, Kenzo Masaoka produced the first anime with pre-recorded voices called Chikara to Onna no Yo no Naka, about a man having an affair. By 1934, anime was made using cels. So far, all the themes of the old anime were not exactly made for children. Some were even made to sell propaganda and promote the military, although educational themes were also produced. In 1945, the full-length anime film Momotaro: Umi no Shinpei was used to send a message of hope, but it was not until 1958, when an anime film was released outside Japan with the production of Hakujaden.

Anime from 1950s to Present
Osamu Tezuka gained cult status as a mangaka (comic artist) and collaborated with animators to produce Boku no Son Goku. The first female animator gained recognition when she directed Ribon no Kishi, while the first anthology was released in 1960 with the title Mittsu no Hanashi, which consisted of 3 segments.

In 1961, the first regular TV anime series Otogi Manga Calendar was aired, but anime TV series was made famous with the release of Tetsuwan Atom, or more popularly known as Astro Boy. The show set the standards and artwork that most anime still use today, such as the stylized hair and big eyes.

The first romance series, Sennin Buraku, and the first children’s series, Tetsujin 28-Go, were both released in 1963. The first anime for girls, Mahotsukai Sally, was released in 1966, while the first space opera, Uchu Senkan Yamato, was aired in 1974.

The Anime Genres
The anime target audience is divided into 5 groups based on age, namely; Shojo (Young Girl), Seinen (Adult Male), Shonen (Young Boy), Josei (Adult Women), and Kodomomuke (Kids).

These are further subdivided into the following categories:
• Action
• Adventure
• Akuma (Demons)
• Bishounen
• Card/Monster Battle
• Comedy
• Drama
• Ecchi (Erotic)
• Fantasy
• Game
• Harem
• Hentai
• Historical
• Horror
• Idol
• Magical Girl
• Mecha (Robots)
• Romance
• Shonen Ai (Girls’ Love)
• Shoujo Ai (Boys’ Love)
• Yaoi
• Yuri

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