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Crunchyroll Logo.svg
Type of businessSubsidiary
Type of site
Video streaming service
FoundedMay 14, 2006; 12 years ago (2006-05-14)
HeadquartersSan Francisco, California, U.S.
Key peopleKun Gao (Crunchyroll Co-founder and GM), Tom Pickett (Ellation CEO)
IndustryAnime industry, anime, Manga, drama, video on demand
ParentOtter Media
Alexa rankIncrease 578[1]
UsersIncrease 40 million
(2 million paying)[2]
Current statusActive

Crunchyroll is an American distributor, publisher, licensing company and international online community focused on video streaming East Asian media including anime, manga, drama, music, electronic entertainment, and content. Founded in 2006 by a group of University of California, Berkeley graduates,[3] Crunchyroll's distribution channel and partnership program delivers content to over 35 million online community members worldwide. Crunchyroll is a subsidiary of Ellation, part of Otter Media, a subsidiary of WarnerMedia, a division of AT&T.[4] Crunchyroll has offices in San Francisco, Chisinau, and Tokyo, and is a member of the Association of Japanese Animations (AJA).[5]

Crunchyroll offers over 900 anime shows,[5] more than 200 Asian dramas to users, and 50 manga titles, although not all programming is available worldwide due to licensing restrictions. In February 2017, Crunchyroll passed one million paid subscribers.[5][6] Beside internet streaming, Crunchyroll also selects some anime titles to release on Blu-ray/DVD through its distribution partners (Funimation in the United States, Anime Limited in the United Kingdom).[7][8]


Crunchyroll started in 2006 as a for-profit video upload and streaming site that specialized in hosting East Asian video content. Some of the content hosted on Crunchyroll included fansubbed versions of East Asian shows.

In 2008, Crunchyroll secured a capital investment of $4.05 million from the venture capital firm Venrock.[9] The investment drew criticism from anime distributors and licensors Bandai Entertainment and Funimation as the site continued to allow users to upload illegal copies of licensed titles.[10]

However, Crunchyroll eventually began securing legal distribution agreements with companies, including Gonzo, for an increasing number of titles. On January 8, 2009, after announcing a deal with TV Tokyo to host episodes of Naruto Shippuden, Crunchyroll stated that it was committed to removing all copyright-infringing material from its site and to hosting only content to which it had legitimate distribution rights.[11]

In 2010, Crunchyroll announced its acquisition of the North American DVD rights to 5 Centimeters Per Second. This was the first DVD release licensed by Crunchyroll.[12]

On October 30, 2013, Crunchyroll began digitally distributing 12 different manga titles from Kodansha – series such as Attack on Titan and Fairy Tail were part of the manga that were available initially – through Crunchyroll Manga.[13]

On December 2, 2013, The Chernin Group, former News Corp. president Peter Chernin's holding company, announced that it has acquired a controlling interest in Crunchyroll. A person with knowledge of the transaction said the price for the acquisition was close to $100 million. The Chernin Group said that Crunchyroll management and existing investor TV Tokyo will maintain a "significant" stake in the company.[14][15]

On April 22, 2014, AT&T and The Chernin Group announced the formation of a joint venture to acquire, invest in and launch over-the-top (OTT) video services. Both companies committed over $500 million in funding to the venture.[16] The new company was named Otter Media and became the majority owner of Crunchyroll.[17] On August 3, 2015, Variety reported that Otter Media will unveil Ellation, a new umbrella company for its subscription-based video services including Crunchyroll.[18] Ellation's services included VRV, which debuted in 2016, a video streaming platform described as targeting "geeks, gamers and lovers of comedy, fantasy and technology."[19]

On October 22, 2015, the Anime News Network reported that Crunchyroll has 700,000 paying subscribers. In addition, the company announced that Crunchyroll and Sumitomo Corporation had created a joint venture to produce and invest in anime productions.[20][21][22][23]

On April 11, 2016, Crunchyroll and Kadokawa Corporation announced the formation of a strategic alliance that gave Crunchyroll exclusive worldwide digital distribution rights (excluding Asia) for Kadokawa anime titles in the upcoming year. It also granted Crunchyroll the right to co-finance Kadokawa anime titles to be produced in the future.[24]

On July 1, 2016, Crunchyroll announced plans to dub and release a number of series on home video.[25]

On September 8, 2016, Crunchyroll announced a partnership with Funimation.[26] Crunchyroll will stream selected Funimation titles, while Funimation will stream selected Crunchyroll titles, as well as their upcoming dubbed content. In addition, Funimation and Universal Pictures Home Entertainment will act as distributors for Crunchyroll's home video catalog. On October 18, 2018, Funimation announced that their partnership with Crunchyroll has ended as a result of Sony Pictures Television's acquisition of Funimation and AT&T's acquisition of Crunchyroll's parent company Otter Media.[27]

On February 9, 2017, Crunchyroll announced that it had reached one million paid subscribers.[5][6]

On March 30, 2017, Crunchyroll began to distribute anime through Steam.[28][29]

On November 4, 2017, a group of hackers managed to DNS hijack the official site for almost 6 hours. Users were redirected to a fake lookalike site which prompted users to download a ransomware under the guise of "CrunchyViewer," although no accident has been reported. Crunchyroll has filed a First information report against the hackers.[30]

In January 2018, Otter Media bought the remaining shares (20%) of Crunchyroll from TV Tokyo[31] and other investors. In August 2018, WarnerMedia acquired Otter Media.[32][33]

In 2018 Crunchyroll's parent company, Elation Media, announced it would begin to produce original content starting in 2019, starting with High Guardian Spice an anime-inspired series produced by San Francisco based Ellation Studios. The series is said to focus on the lives of four girls; Rosemary, Sage, Thyme and Parsley, whom meet at Guardian Academy as they train to become guardians. The girls hone their battle and sorcery skills while also navigating adolescence and preparing to combat an ominous unknown threat.[34]


With paid memberships, streaming to select Windows Phone devices (with OS 7.5 or higher), Roku devices, Boxee, Wii U,[35] PlayStation 3,[36] PlayStation 4,[37] PlayStation Vita,[38] Xbox 360[39] and Xbox One[40] consoles, and Vizio, Google and Internet enabled televisions is available.[citation needed] In June 2013 the service became available through Apple TV.[41] It is also the last title for WiiWare released in October 2015.[42] The service also has iOS and Android apps.

The Anime Awards[edit]

The Anime Awards, also known as the Crunchyroll Anime Awards, are annual awards given to recognize anime from the previous year. The awards were first held in January 2017. The judges create a short list in different categories and public votes for the winners are held online.


Voting was held between January 3–10, 2017. The results were announced on January 11, 2017, with the exception of the "Anime of the Year" prize, which was announced on January 28, 2017. More than 1.8 million votes from around the world were submitted.[43][44] In response to complaints about vote rigging, Crunchyroll tweeted "We had very strong anti-cheating methods that gave us results in line with true audience sentiment" and "we had some surprisingly complex ways to fight multiple voting that worked based on multiple tests."[45]

Winners are listed first, highlighted in boldface, and indicated with a double dagger (double-dagger).

Anime of the Year[46][47] Hero of the Year[48]

1. Yuri on Icedouble-dagger
2. Mob Psycho 100
3. Erased
4. My Hero Academia
5. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
6. Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World
7. Kiznaiver
Also nominated: Joker Game and Descending Stories: Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinju

1. Izuku "Deku" Midoriya from My Hero Academiadouble-dagger
2. Satoru Fujinuma from Erased
3. Mob from Mob Psycho 100
4. Mumei from Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
Most popular "Other" choice: Josuke Higashikata from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable[49]

Villain of the Year[50] Best Boy[51]

1. Gaku Yashiro from Eraseddouble-dagger
2. Yoshikage Kira from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable
3. Tomura Shigaraki from My Hero Academia
4. Biba from Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
Most popular "Other" choice: Betelgeuse from Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World[49]

1. Yuri Katsuki from Yuri on Icedouble-dagger
2. Arataka Reigen from Mob Psycho 100
3. Izuku "Deku" Midoriya from My Hero Academia
4. Yakumo from Shōwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjū
Most popular "Other" choice: Josuke Higashikata from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable[49]

Best Girl[52] Best Fight Scene[53]

1. Rem from Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another Worlddouble-dagger
2. Ochako Uraraka from My Hero Academia
3. Nico Niiyama from Kiznaiver
4. Mumei from Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
Most popular "Other" choice: Megumin from KonoSuba[49]

1. Shigeo vs. Koyama from Ep. 8 of Mob Psycho 100double-dagger
2. Deku vs. Kacchan from Ep. 7 of My Hero Academia
3. Mumei vs. Kabane from Ep. 2 of Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
4. Altland vs. Moss from Ep. 32 of Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans
Most popular "Other" choice: Naruto vs. Sasuke from Naruto Shippuden[49]

Best Animation[54] Most Heartwarming Scene[55]

1. Yuri on Icedouble-dagger
2. Mob Psycho 100
3. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
4. Flip Flappers
Most popular "Other" choice: Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World[49]

1. "The kiss" from Ep. 7 of Yuri on Icedouble-dagger
2. "Kayo's first homecooked meal" from Ep. 9 of Erased
3. "Kakeru and Suwa learn to understand each other" from Ep. 4 of Orange
4. "Makoto flies over her new home" from Ep. 12 of Flying Witch
Most popular "Other" choice: Rem's confession from Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World[49]

Best Drama[56] Best Couple[57]

1. Eraseddouble-dagger
2. Kiznaiver
3. Shōwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjū
4. Joker Game
Most popular "Other" choice: Orange[49]

1. Yuri & Victor from Yuri on Icedouble-dagger
2. Satoru & Kayo from Erased
3. Katsuhira and Sonozaki from Kiznaiver
4. Luluco and Nova from Space Patrol Luluco
Most popular "Other" choice: Subaru and Rem from Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World[49]

Best Comedy[58] Best Action[59]

1. Haven't You Heard? I'm Sakamotodouble-dagger
2. KonoSuba
3. Keijo!!!!!!!!
4. Space Patrol Luluco
Most popular "Other" choice: Nanbaka[49]

1. Mob Psycho 100double-dagger
2. My Hero Academia
3. Drifters
4. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
Most popular "Other" choice: JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Diamond Is Unbreakable[49]

Best Opening[60] Best Ending[61]

1. Yuri on Icedouble-dagger
2. Mob Psycho 100
3. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
4. Shōwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjū
Most popular "Other" choice: Erased[49]

1. Yuri on Icedouble-dagger
2. Mob Psycho 100
3. Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress
4. Space Patrol Luluco
Most popular "Other" choice: Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World[49]


The voting was held from January to early February 2018 in three separate rounds. The winners were announced on 24 February 2018. The awards had a number of changes, including having six nominations for all categories and the addition of new categories. The awards also expanded beyond just anime series, with the categories Best Film and Best Manga awarding the best anime film and manga series of the year 2017.

The awards were presented in a live show hosted by Crunchyroll, by multiple different people of some fame in the western anime community, including many Anime YouTubers.

Anime of the Year
Best Girl Best Boy
Best Manga Best Hero
Best Villain Best Action
Best Drama Best Comedy
Best Slice of Life Best Continuing Series
Best Opening Best Ending
Best Animation Best Score
Best Film Best CGI

See also[edit]


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  4. ^ "AT&T Acquires Full Ownership of Otter Media". August 7, 2018.
  5. ^ a b c d "Largest Anime Streaming Service Crunchyroll Surpasses One Million Paid Subscribers". Crunchyroll. February 9, 2017. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  6. ^ a b Sevakis, Justin (February 13, 2017). "How Big Of A Deal Is Crunchyroll Reaching A Million Subscribers?". Anime News Network. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
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  13. ^ Marcias, Patrick. "It's Here! Crunchyroll Manga is Now Open!". Crunchyroll. Retrieved 2015-10-15.
  14. ^ Lieberman, David (2013-12-02). "Peter Chernin Takes Control Of Anime Provider Crunchyroll". Deadline Hollywood.
  15. ^ Glover, Ronald (2013-12-02). "Chernin buys anime site Crunchyroll to expand online video assets". Reuters.
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  17. ^ Spangler, Todd (2014-07-14). "AT&T-Chernin Group's Otter Media Online-Video Venture Acquires Creativebug for $10 Mil". Variety. Retrieved 2016-04-12.
  18. ^ Roettgers, Janko (2015-08-03). "Chernin, AT&T Set Brand for New Online Video Venture: Ellation". Variety. Retrieved 2016-04-12.
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  27. ^ "Funimation, Crunchyroll End Content Sharing Partnership". Anime News Network. Retrieved October 18, 2018.
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  29. ^ "Steam Anime Sale 2017". Retrieved 2 April 2017.
  30. ^ Gach, Ethan. "Crunchyroll Website Currently Down Following Malware Attacks". Kotaku. Retrieved 4 November 2017.
  31. ^ "Majority Owner Otter Media Buys Remaining Shares Of Fullscreen, Ellation - Tubefilter". Tubefilter. 2018-01-25. Retrieved 2018-02-23.
  32. ^ "AT&T Buys Out Crunchyroll's Otter Media". Anime News Network. Retrieved October 26, 2018.
  33. ^ Patrick Hipes (August 7, 2018). "AT&T Acquires Rest Of Otter Media To Fold Into New WarnerMedia". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved October 26, 2018.
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External links[edit]