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Texas Connects Us: Anime in Flower Mound

Anime is a cartoon-style of Japanese animation known for it's distinct characters.

Flower Mound is home to FUNimation, the leading anime company in the North America.

Employees work on nearly 700 half-hour episodes and a dozen anime movies a year.

"We do the whole gamut from grabbing anime out of Japan, to producing the English version, to properly marketing, selling and distributing it," said Gen Fukunaga, President and CEO of FUNimation.

Fukunaga launched the business in the late 90s.

"Nobody in America thought it would work in the Hollywood industry," Fukunaga said. "They said 'it's so quirky and different, forget it, it's not gonna work.'"

But it did work. And it still is.  

"'Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection F' was the biggest movie in the history of this company," Fukunaga added. "It was released last year in theaters and did about $8.4 million in the box office in only four showings."

It broke a U.S. record for that type of release. Not bad for a guy who gave up his high tech job on a risky venture.

"Everybody thought I was a little strange to go jumping into anime," he said.

Now his company employs 185 people and the operation in Flower Mound operates out of a 48,000 square foot building.

Fukunaga grew up watching anime in Japan and he had a hunch English-speaking audiences would enjoy it, as well.

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