Sometimes people usually neglect anime just because they think it’s cheap and worthless to watch kids’ stuff. But anyone who knew even a little about animation must know how much a single episode of anime can cost. Today, I have listed the top 10 most expensive anime series of all time whose heavy budgets make sense but can drive you crazy with their numbers.
Awesome action sequences, sparkling blasts, attractive romantic anime characters, all can cost millions to production houses. I don’t say high-budget anime is always worthwhile to watch but you can take the example of One Piece and Dragon Ball which have been consistent to maintain their popularity around all over the world with their heavy wallets.
So let’s get into it and see for yourself.
10: Once Punch Man
People who have watched this show must think how much Saitma’s blad head and one-hit short fights could cost its production house. How it’s even possible that One Punch Man is on the list of the most expensive anime? In reality, his facial expressions and explosive punch animations must steal cash from producers’ pockets.
There are some fights like brawling with Boros Madhouse that Saitama can’t end quickly, which costs its production house an average of $80k for each episode. And now as its new season is in production, you can expect its budget to move upward as the anime continues adapting manga.
Number of Episodes: 25 continues
Studio: Madhouse Animation Studio
IMDb rating: 8.7/10
9: Demon Slayer
If you’re an anime fan you may have not forgotten the animation masterpiece of Demon Slayer season 1 ep 19, Tanjiro vs Rui. Back-to-back three wonderful and most expensive anime series of Demon Slayer from Ufotable make sense of animation rivalry with Mappa Studios.
However, in 2022 Demon Slayer was also announced as the best anime of the year for beautiful visuals. As Ufotable has to visualize each breathing style differently, it’s no wonder why they have to spend $80k per episode.
In 2022 after the roaring success of its first demon slayer season, Ufotable has also invested a gigantic $16 million amount on their movie “Demon Slayer; Mugen Train”. Which has collected $ 506 million at the box office.
Number of Episodes: 42 continues
IMDb rating: 8.7/10
8: One piece
As one piece is an action anime, massive numbers of battles are to be blamed for the $90k expense on each episode. But the crazy thing about this anime is its number of episodes which are 1000 plus and continues. It also has 14 movies.
If we count the total expense of each series, it’s clear that One Piece will stand at 1st position in the list of most expensive anime series of all time due to its consistency.
Well in 2022 One Piece won the award for most continuous anime of all time. One Piece is popular for its endless unique characters list and some of the saddest deaths in anime history, and you must know, unique characters and history-creating animation moments always cost strongly for production houses.
Number of Episodes: 1000 Plus
Studio: Toei Animation
IMDb rating: N/a
7: Naruto Shippuden
As Naruto Shippuden is the root of one of the most famous anime of all time, it’s no surprise why Naruto Shippuden has to spend at least $100k on each episode to push it a little further from its ancestral root.
Many fans consider Naruto as one of the badass and well-written character. To push it a little beyond than its ancestral root, it feels justice to put $100k in each episode. The show is full of main, side, and supporting characters that make the show an expensive anime series and an enjoyable piece of art that is worth every penny.
Number of Episodes: 500
IMDb rating: 8.7/10
6: My Hero Academia
My Hero Academia is ranked in the top 5 most beloved anime around the world with its wonderful determined heroes who have their unique flares to display.
As many characters have driven from the DC like Shazam and Raven, it’s no surprise that Studio Bones must need to put a gigantic budget of $110k for each episode to make them surpass their origin. And we all know apart from DCU, Dc is one of the most beloved studios to make quick and dark animations.
Number of Episodes: 113
Studio: Kohei Studio
IMDb rating: 8.4/10
5: Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure
Though people usually do hate JoJo’s creepy animations, it’s a very distinctly animated series that put $120k amount to keep their fan base on their toes. However, people prefer this show for its bizarre tactics and plot twists.
Unique and elaborate fight scenes alongside magic and character details make this show one of the most expensive shounen anime series of all time.
Number of Episodes: 152
Studio: David Production
IMDb rating: 7.7/10
4: Black Clover
A story of two orphans, Asta and Yuno, who both are determined to achieve the highest rank of wizard king in their magic world. Tbh for the initial two seasons of Black Clover, $140k on each episode is such an unmatchable amount, as the intensive fights lack details in animation.
But as you follow the storyline towards the latest arcs, the animation gets better and smoother. $140k makes sense to animate each character according to its unique style and just like One Piece. This show also possesses multiple characters with deep facial expressions and magic animations.
As Black Clover has shown very intense fights with details as much as possible, it becomes a query how the studio will ace previous quality to satisfy Black Clover fans. In the current year 2023, its new movie is also airing which needs to improve its animation quality to surpass Mugan Train.
You wouldn’t have imagined black clover in this list of top expensive anime series if you’ve watched its initial episodes.
Number of Episodes: 170
IMDb rating: 8.3/10
3: Jujutsu Kaisen
2020 had become a treat to anime lovers when they get to see the first season of Jujutsu Kasien, a Shonen series that contains some insanely adorable characters, a supernatural plot, and some badass characters.
If you’ve watched this, you can feel how smooth its animations were, whether it comes to simple talks, facial expressions and intense action fights. Mappa was acing the levels of animation in this Show.
The people who remembered the iconic scene of Gojo’s domain and paired fight of Itadori Yuji with a special grade curse will satisfy with $150k for each episode of this anime. While watching this show, you can’t hold yourself back to admire Mappa’s creation.
If you ask me, I would say Jujutsu Kaisen is worthy of being on the list of the top most expensive anime series of all time. As its animation reflects the money and hard work behind it.
Number of Episodes: 24
Studio: Mappa Studio
IMDb rating: 8.5/10
2: Attack on Titan
People usually called it the best and most depressing anime of entire anime history with its unpredictable twists and the world’s best antagonist hero “Eren Yaeger”. Mark my words, if you’re new to anime and just wanted to watch Aot, its first episode will drive you nuts with its insane levels of animation and cruel storyline.
Attack on Titan could have won an award when it comes to treating its main characters like sidekicks, and once you think you finally hold some grip on this show, this will show its $150k budget power to kill its main characters beautifully without remorse.
But these stats are accurate for Wit Studios, but Mappa Studios who is now animating this masterpiece has not revealed its budget yet. But the insane amount of details in Rumbling give me vibes, it can even top the most expensive anime series of all time.
Number of Episodes: 88
Studio: Wit Studio
IMDb rating: 9/10
1: Dragon Ball Super
Anime fans would have desperately waited for this anime to show up on this list as this is one of the most admirable and popular anime around the globe. The most recent Dragon Ball Super is the most expensive installment of the entire Dragon Ball saga. And non-stop fighting sequences between the world’s most skilled and powerful beings should cost a bit high than usual.
Even though the anime ended years ago, fans are still asking what’s next, as they don’t know the cost of each episode of Dragon Ball Super. Each sparkling episode of this anime has cost Toei Animation $160k, which is nuts when you have to make at least a hundred and above episodes to cover anime.
Yet the anime has not disappointed us for its unbelievable animations and has topped the list of the most expensive anime series of all time.
Number of Episodes: 131
Studio: Toei Animation
IMDb rating: 8.3/10