Shaft, Inc. (有限会社シャフト Yūgengaisha Shafuto?) is a Japanese animation studio founded on September 1, 1975 by Hiroshi Wakao. They are best known for their unique use of gags and references notably in Pani Poni Dash!, Maria Holic, Sayonara Zetsubō Sensei, Hidamari Sketch and Bakemonogatari series.


Shaft was founded on September 1, 1975 by Hiroshi Wakao, former Mushi Production's animator. The company was originally founded to paint the animation but later worked on animation production as a subcontractor. They were able to produce their own first original series, Yume kara samenai (夢から、さめない Yume kara samenai?) in 1987.

In 2000, after Shaft cooperating with Gainax to produce a DVD special of remastered Gunbuster, they were in joint production with Gainax to produce Mahoromatic, This Ugly and Beautiful World, and He is My Master. After Hiroshi Wakao's retirement in 2004, Kubota Mitsutoshi has become Shaft's representative director. Their painting group has also been downsized in order to strengthen their digital group.


Since 2004, Akiyuki Shinbo, Tatsuya Oishi and Shin Ōnuma have participated in most of Shaft's productions, starting with Tsukuyomi: Moon Phase. The studio is unique due to their use of gags and references to other anime through writing on a classroom chalkboard or any available empty space in the background.

Produced series

TV anime

Other works


  • "Negima!?". (November 2006) Newtype USA. p. 10.

External links

ko:샤프트 it:Shaft (studio) pl:Shaft (studio) ru:Shaft (компания) zh:SHAFT

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