Every year, the Japanese Government Agency for Cultural Affairs will announce the recipients for their Minister of Education Award for Fine Arts. Last 8th March, they finally announced the winners, who will each receive a price worth 300,000 yen in cash. Of the 18 recipients, anime fans might be able to recognise three of them, and they are Sunao Katabuchi, Hideaki Anno, and Osamu Akimoto.
Sunao Katabuchi is the director of the critically-acclaimed anime film, In This Corner of the World. The film recently won the Japan Academy Prize for Best Animated Film, and has also won several other awards.
For many anime fans, Hideaki Anno needs no introduction. He is the creator of Evangelion, as well as the founder of Studio Khara. He is also the director of Shin Godzilla.
Finally, mangaka Osamu Akimoto is responsible for giving us the hilarious police manga, KochiKame. He ended his long-running manga last September after a historic 40-year run.
Both Katabuchi and Anno won for the film category, while Akimoto won it for the media art category. They will be receiving their prize, along with their 300,000 yen prize money, during an awarding ceremony on 15th March. The government will be holding it at the Toshi Center Hotel in Tokyo.
The Minister of Education Award recognises artists from 11 different categories who excelled during the past year. Previous winners include Naruto mangaka Masashi Kishimoto, as well as seiyuu Nana Mizuki.