Toei Company

Toei Company, Ltd. (東映株式会社, Tōei Kabushiki-gaisha) (/t./) (also styled TOEI) is a Japanese film, television production, and distribution and video game developer and publishing company. Based in Tokyo, Toei owns and operates thirty-four movie theaters across Japan (all but two of them operated by its subsidiary, T-Joy), studios at Tokyo and Kyoto; and is a shareholder in several television companies. It is notable for creating animated programming known as anime, and live action dramas known as tokusatsu which use special visual effects. It also creates historical dramas (jidaigeki). Outside Japan, it is known as the controlling shareholder of Toei Animation and the owner of the Kamen Rider and Super Sentai franchises.

Toei Company, Ltd.
Native name
Tōei kabushiki gaisha
TypePublic KK
TYO: 9605
IndustryFilm and television
Video games
FoundedJune 8, 1938; 84 years ago (1938-06-08) (as Toyoko Eiga)
October 1, 1949; 73 years ago (1949-10-01) (as Tokyo Film Distribution, a subdsidiary of Tokyu and Toyoko Eiga)
April 1, 1951; 71 years ago (1951-04-01) (as Toei Company)
FounderKeita Goto
2-17 Ginza 3-chome, Chūō, Tokyo 104-8108
Area served
Worldwide, with a focus in Japan
ProductsMotion pictures, publicity materials
ServicesFilm and TV distribution and marketing
Revenue¥ 66,300,000,000
(as of March 2006)
OwnerAs per 31 March 2016:
The Asahi Shimbun (ultimate largest shareholder, through TV Asahi Holdings, which owns 11.3%)
TBS Television (5.69%)
JTSB investment trusts (5.69%)
Bandai Namco Holdings (4.82%)
Tokyu Corporation (4.06%)
Fuji Media Holdings/Fujisankei Communications Group (3.87%)
Nippon TV (3.25%)
Number of employees
(as of March 1, 2019)[1]
SubsidiariesToei Lab Tech
Toei International

Toei Digital Lab[2]
Toei Animation (41%)[3]
Toei TV Production
Toei Video
Toei Satellite TV
Cinema Plus[2]
Toei Advertising
Toei CM[2]
San-Ei Printing[2]
Toei Music Publishing[2]
Toei Studios Kyoto[2]
Toei Kenko[2]
Toei Foods[2]
Toei Golf Club[2]
K.K.Central Arts[2]
T-Joy (operates Toei's cinema undertakings except in Ginza and Shibuya)
Amazon Laterna[2]
Coyote Inc.[2]

Toei is one of the four members of the Motion Picture Producers Association of Japan (MPPAJ), and is therefore one of Japan's Big Four film studios.

The name "Toei" is derived from the company's former name "kyō Eiga Haikyū" (画配給, Tokyo Film Distribution Company).


Toei's predecessor, the Toyoko Eiga Company, Ltd. (東横映画, Tō-Yoko Eiga, "Toyoko Films"), was incorporated in 1938. It was founded by Keita Goto, CEO of Tokyo-Yokohama Electric Railway (東京横浜電鉄, Tōkyō-Yokohama Dentetsu), the direct predecessor to the Tokyu Corporation. It had erected its facilities immediately east of the Tōkyū Tōyoko Line; they managed the Tōkyū Shibuya Yokohama studio system prior to V-J Day. From 1945 through the Toei merger, Tokyo-Yokohama Films leased from the Daiei Motion Picture Company a second studio in Kyoto.

On October 1, 1950, the Tokyo Film Distribution Company was incorporated as a subsidiary of Toyoko Eiga; in 1951 the company purchased Ōizumi Films. The current iteration of Toei was established on 1 April 1951. Through the merger, they gained the combined talents and experience of actors Chiezō Kataoka, Utaemon Ichikawa, Ryunosuke Tsukigata, Ryūtarō Ōtomo, Kinnosuke Nakamura, Chiyonosuke Azuma, Shirunosuke Toshin, Hashizo Okawa, and Satomi Oka.

In 1955, they purchased the Kyoto studio from Daiei.[4] In 1956, Toei established an animation division, Toei Animation Company, Limited at the former Tokyo-Ōizumi animation studio, purchasing the assets of Japan Animated Films (日本動画映画, Nihon Dōga Eiga, often shortened to 日動映画 (Nichidō Eiga)), founded in 1948. Toei was a pioneer in the use of "Henshin"/"character transformation" in live-action martial-arts dramas, a technique developed for the Kamen Rider, Metal Hero and Super Sentai series; the genre currently continues with Kamen Rider and Super Sentai.

In September 1964, Toei leaves the Tokyu Corporation.[4]

In 1972, Toei started to distribute foreign films in Japan.[4]

In 1975, they opened a theme park at Kyoto Studio, the Toei Kyoto Studio Park.[4]

Toei filmsEdit

Toei started producing films in 1953. This list compiles the films by their original release date, their common English titles and Japanese titles. The Japanese titles are not necessarily direct translations of their English counterparts.

For feature films, Toei established itself as a producer of B-movies, that were made to fit into double bills and triple bills.[5][6] It is predominantly known in the west for its series of action films and television series.[6]

Release date English film title Original title Notes Ref(s)
1954 Weak-kneed from Fear of Ghost-Cat Kaibyo koshinuke daisodo [7]
1956 The Phantom Cat Kaibyo Ranbu [8] [9]
1956 The Swamp Kaidan Chidoriga-fuchi [10]
1957 Ghost Story of Broken Dishes at Bancho Mansion Kaidan Bancho sara yashiki [11]
1958 Ghost-Cat of Karakuri Tenjo Kaibyo Karakuri Tenjo [7]
March 19, 1959 Planet Prince Yusei oji Chapter 1 [12]
May 26, 1959 Planet Prince - The Terrifying Spaceship Yūsei Ōji - Kyōfu no Uchūsen Chapter 2 (both chapters edited into a 1962 feature version called Prince of Space) [12]
1959 Ghost from the Pond Kaidan hitotsu-me Jizo [13]
October 19, 1959 The Final War Daisanji sekai taisen - yonju-ichi jikan no kyofu A New Toei Co, Ltd. Production; released in U.S. in 1962 [14]
1960 Alakazam the Great Saiyu-ki A Toei Animation Co, Ltd. Production [15]
July 19, 1961 Invasion of the Neptune Men Uchu kaizoku-sen Starred Sonny Chiba as Space Chief [16]
1961 Ghost of Oiwa Kaidan Oiwa no Borei [17]
1962 Ghost Music of Shamisen Kaidan shamisen-bori [17][18]
1964 Jakoman and Tetsu Jakoman to Tetsu [19]
1965 House of Terrors Kaidan semushi otoko (Ghost of the Hunchback[20]) [21]
1965 Ghost of the One-Eyed Man Kaidan katame no otoko [22]
1966 The Magic Serpent Kai tatsu daikessen [23]
1967 Yongary, Monster from the Deep Dai koesu Yongkari South Korean/Japanese co-production [24][25]
December 1, 1968 The Green Slime Gamma sango uchu dai sakusen U.S./ Japanese co-production [26][27]
1968 Fear of the Snake Woman Kaidan hebionna [13]
August 13, 1969 Killer's Mission Shokin kasegi [28]
1969 Horrors of Malformed Men Kyofu kikei ningen [29]
1970 Voyage Into Space Giant Robo (Johnny Sokko and his Flying Robot)[30] Episodes of the Japanese TV series re-edited into a TV movie for U.S. release [31]
May 23, 1970 A Kamikaze Cop Yakuza deka [18]
October 17, 1970 Kamikaze Cop, Marihuana Syndicate Yakuza deka, Marihuana mitsubai soshiki [18]
1970 Venus Flytrap (film) Revenge of Dr. X (U.S. video title) Based on a 1950s unproduced screenplay by Ed Wood (uncredited) [32]
August 25, 1972 Female Prisoner 701: Scorpion [33][34]
December 30, 1972 Female Convict Scorpion: Jailhouse 41 [35][34]
July 29, 1973 Female Convict Scorpion: Beast Stable [36][34]
1974 The Street Fighter Gekitotsu Satsujinken starred Sonny Chiba; spawned 2 sequels, Return of the Street Fighter and Street Fighter's Last Revenge [32]
April 29, 1977 Legend of Dinosaurs & Monster Birds Kyoryu-kaicho no densetsu [37][38]
April 29, 1978 Message from Space Uchu kara no messeji Starred Sonny Chiba and Vic Morrow [39][40]
1979 The Inferno Jigoku [41]
January 30, 1981 Time Slip (a.k.a. G.I. Samurai[42]) Sengoku jieitai starred Sonny Chiba [43]
October 13, 1990 The Pale Head Shiroi te A Kansai Telecasting Corp/Toei-Tokyo Production [44][45]
2001 The Firefly Hotaru Toei 50th Anniversary film [46]
2012 A Chorus of Angels Kita no Canaria tachi Toei 60th Anniversary films [46]
2012 Hayabusa: Harukanaru Kikan Toei 60th Anniversary films [46]
September 3, 2013 Space Pirate Captain Harlock a.k.a. Harlock: Space Pirate Toei Animation Production [47]
December 5, 2015 125 Years Memory Kainan 1890 Co-produced by Toei, Creators' Union, Böcek Yapım [48]
May 17, 2019 First Love Hatsukoi [49][50]
June 25, 2021 The Goldfish Umibe no Kingyō [51]
2023 The Legend and Butterfly Toei 70th Anniversary film [46]

Toei animation filmsEdit

Toei produced/distributed showsEdit

Year Title
1971-present Kamen Rider franchise
1975–present Super Sentai franchise
1982–present Metal Hero franchise
1993–present Power Rangers franchise
1994-1996 VR Troopers
1995-1996 Masked Rider
1996-1998 Big Bad Beetleborgs (later Beetleborgs Metallix)
2008-2009 Kamen Rider: Dragon Knight

Video gamesEdit

Saburo YatsudeEdit

Saburō Yatsude (八手 三郎, Yatsude Saburō, alternatively read as Saburo Hatte) is a collective pseudonym used by Toei Company television producers, and formerly Toei Animation producers, when contributing to their various anime and tokusatsu series; similar to Sunrise's Hajime Yatate. The use of the pen name began with The Kagestar and has been used throughout the Super Sentai (in the adapted Power Rangers series starting with Ninja Storm, the credits list Saburo Hatte. Before this, the credits listed "Original Concepts by Saburo Yatsude") and Metal Hero Series as well as for Spider-Man, Choukou Senshi Changéríon, Video Warrior Laserion, Chōdenji Robo Combattler V, Chōdenji Machine Voltes V, Tōshō Daimos, Daltanius, Space Emperor God Sigma, Beast King GoLion and Kikou Kantai Dairugger XV. The name is also used as a contributor to the soundtracks for the series.

Toei Animation stopped using Saburo Yatsude in 1999, and they began to use Izumi Todo instead. The first anime that was created by Izumi Todo was Ojamajo Doremi.

In the Unofficial Sentai Akibaranger series, Saburo Hatte is an actual person who is godlike within the fictional reality that the show takes place in. In fact, his hand appears at the end of the first half of the series to cover the camera lens and end the show, later having the second half be made under Malseena's influence while in the hospital in the real world.

In the Doubutsu Sentai Zyuohger spinoff, Super Animal War's third episode, he is portrayed by Jun Hikasa.

On April 3, 2016, an unknown Toei staff member going by Saburo Yatsude was interviewed while wearing a "Giraffe Zyuman" mask in reference to Zyuohger.[52]

Original creatorEdit

Live actionEdit




Web seriesEdit


See alsoEdit



  1. ^ "会社概要".
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m "TOEI GROUP" (in Japanese). Retrieved August 16, 2018.
  3. ^ "IR NEWS | 支配株主等に関する事項について (Matters concerning the controlling shareholder)" (in Japanese). May 18, 2018.
  4. ^ a b c d Osaki, Tad (17 December 2001). "Toei through the ages". Variety (Toei at 50 ed.). p. A2.
  5. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 88.
  6. ^ a b Galbraith IV 1996, p. 89.
  7. ^ a b Galbraith IV 1996, p. 241.
  8. ^ "KAIBYO RANBU (1956) de Masamitsu Igayama, Cinefania".
  9. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 320.
  10. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 378.
  11. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 242.
  12. ^ a b Galbraith IV 1996, p. 325.
  13. ^ a b Galbraith IV 1996, p. 243.
  14. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 166.
  15. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 99.
  16. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 233.
  17. ^ a b Galbraith IV 1996, p. 244.
  18. ^ a b c Galbraith IV 1996, p. 245.
  19. ^ Galbraith IV 2008, p. 72.
  20. ^[bare URL]
  21. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 220.
  22. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 182.
  23. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 275.
  24. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 448.
  25. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 449.
  26. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 202.
  27. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 203.
  28. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 247.
  29. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 218.
  30. ^ Woolery, George W. (1985). Children's Television: The First Thirty-Five Years, 1946-1981, Part II: Live, Film, and Tape Series. The Scarecrow Press. pp. 251–252. ISBN 0-8108-1651-2.
  31. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 431.
  32. ^ a b Galbraith IV 1996, p. 373.
  33. ^ Female Prisoner Scorpion: The Complete Collection (book). Arrow Video. 2016. p. 5. FCD1338/AV060.
  34. ^ a b c Sharp 2011, p. 120.
  35. ^ Female Prisoner Scorpion: The Complete Collection (book). Arrow Video. 2016. p. 7. FCD1338/AV060.
  36. ^ Female Prisoner Scorpion: The Complete Collection (book). Arrow Video. 2016. p. 9. FCD1338/AV060.
  37. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 261.
  38. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 262.
  39. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 285.
  40. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 286.
  41. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 236.
  42. ^ "It's Ninjas Vs. Helicopters in Sonny Chiba's G.I. Samurai". 30 August 2008.
  43. ^ Galbraith IV 1996, p. 396.
  44. ^ Galbraith IV 2008, p. 373.
  45. ^ Galbraith IV 2008, p. 374.
  46. ^ a b c d "木村拓哉×綾瀬はるか×大友啓史監督 激動の時代を生き抜いた夫婦を描く 映画『THE LEGEND & BUTTERFLY』公開決定". otocoto. Retrieved June 23, 2022.
  47. ^ Elley, Derek (7 September 2013). "Space Pirate Captain Harlock". Film Business Asia. Archived from the original on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2019.
  48. ^ "125 Years Memory", Retrieved 21 May 2020.
  49. ^ Kiang, Jessica (30 May 2019). "Film Review: 'First Love'". Variety. Retrieved 11 November 2019.
  50. ^ "'First Love' ('Hatsukoi'): Film Review | Cannes 2019". The Hollywood Reporter. 17 May 2019. Retrieved 11 November 2019.
  51. ^ The Goldfish: Dreaming of the Sea (2021) - IMDb, retrieved 2021-08-29
  52. ^ "Animal Sentai Zyuohger".


External linksEdit