A fire at an animation studio in Kyoto, Japan, has left more than 30 people dead and dozens more injured, making it the deadliest fire in Japan in nearly two decades. The man suspected of starting it is in custody. Earlier I spoke with Alastair Gale. He is the Japan editor for The Wall Street Journal. And he first explained what this animation studio, Kyoto Animation, means to Japan.
ALASTAIR GALE: Well, animation is one of the things that makes Japan famous. It's — you know, produces — lots of animations are very popular in the movie theaters here. People read them in comic books, on the trains. It's sort of very much part of the culture here. So companies like Kyoto Animation, you know, really sort of signature businesses for the Japanese economy. And this particular company produces mainly comic books and films, which are about young women, high school women, and it's been doing that since the 1980s.
SHAPIRO: Any idea why it would be a target for an attack like this?
GALE: Yeah, it's unclear at the moment. What we know from a few witnesses is that the person who is being detained by the police may have harbored a grudge against the company. We are told by the police that he did — he was not an employee of the company, either now or in the past. But one of the eyewitnesses said that when the police detained him and were questioning him, as they took him away, he was saying that — he was basically accusing the company of stealing his ideas. He was calling them copycats.
The president of the company did say that he — they'd received death threats for several years, but he wasn't specific about who was sending those threats and whether this person who's been detained was someone who has been involved in that kind of thing.
SHAPIRO: As you said, the work of this company, Kyoto Animation, has had a global reach for years. People feel a deep connection to the characters that have come out of this studio. What is the reaction like today in Japan?
GALE: Well, shock, obviously. You know, the scale of death is something that's unusual for Japan. We don't have many of these kind of, you know, violent incidents here. The death — murder rate rather, is...
GALE: ...Is very low in Japan. Violent attacks are relatively rare. So, generally, there's shock at the — that something like this would happen, and there have been people gathering around the offices of this company in Tokyo, as well as in Kyoto, to sort of, you know, express their feelings and show how distraught they are by all this. And the prime minister as well has expressed his shock.
SHAPIRO: That was Alastair Gale, the Japan editor for The Wall Street Journal. People are reacting with shock to this fire far beyond Japan. Kyoto Animation has fans around the world, including Micaela Mussell. She is an audio editor in Santa Cruz, Calif. She describes herself as a super fan of the studio.
MICAELA MUSSELL: Their coloring is off the charts. It's a different level from most other animation studios. And you can see the love and detail that they put into their work just by the flow of the animation and the range of colors that you don't normally see.
SHAPIRO: Give us an example. Tell us about one of your favorite creations of theirs.
MUSSELL: A movie called "A Silent Voice" that they put out, which was an adoption of the comic, and it was about a deaf girl who wanted to put herself more out into the world. And the visuals that they had made, the colors that tried to show the difference in her emotions throughout the movie — it was just gorgeous, and it's hard to describe in words without seeing it. But it was just beautiful (laughter).
SHAPIRO: Is there a way that fans are coming together today? Have you seen a lot of reaction online? Are people trying to do anything for the studio or at least sharing things that really moved them that the studio created?
MUSSELL: Yeah. So on Twitter all today and all yesterday when it happened, there's been a hashtag — #PrayForKyoAni.
SHAPIRO: That's an abbreviation of Kyoto Animation — KyoAni.
MUSSELL: Yeah. Where people are sharing their favorite shows that they have made and some moments that they've really enjoyed from those shows. And people are just really coming together to try to honor all the work that they've done. In this event, we don't know how many directors we've lost because the names haven't been out yet. So everyone is just hoping for the best and coming together.
SHAPIRO: Micaela Mussell — she now works as an audio editor in the Japanese music industry. Thank you for joining us.
MUSSELL: No problem.
SHAPIRO: And we've been talking about the fire that took place earlier today at Kyoto Animation studios in Japan.
日本京都一家动画工作室发生火灾，造成超过30人死亡，另有数十人受伤，这是日本近20年来发生的最致命火灾 。纵火嫌犯为一名男子，目前已被拘留 。早些时候我采访了阿拉斯泰尔·盖尔 。他是《华尔街日报》的日本编辑 。他首先介绍了遭纵火动画工作室京都动画（昵称为京阿尼)）对日本的意义 。
阿拉斯泰尔·盖尔：动画是日本闻名世界的产业之一 。很多动画作品在电影院备受欢迎 。人们会在列车上看漫画书 。可以说，动画是日本文化的重要组成部分 。因此对日本经济来说，像京都动画这样的公司可以说是标志性企业 。尤其是，京都动画成立于上世纪80年代，主要业务是出版漫画书和制作电影，受众群是年轻女性和高中女生 。
盖尔：目前还不能确定动机 。据一些目击者说，警方逮捕的嫌疑人可能对这家工作室心怀怨恨 。警方告诉我们，嫌犯并不是该工作室的员工，从未在工作室工作过 。但是一名目击者称，警方逮捕嫌犯后进行了讯问，他在被带走时指控京都动画窃取他的想法 。他称这家工作室是抄袭者 。
夏皮罗：你刚才说，多年以来，京都动画的作品一直在全球占有一席之地 。人们感觉与这家工作室制作的角色有很深的联系 。那今天日本对这一事件有何反应？
盖尔：显然，人们感到非常震惊 。这种死亡规模在日本相当不同寻常 。日本很少发生这类暴力事件 。日本的谋杀率相当低 。
盖尔：非常低 。暴力袭击相对来说比较少有 。总的来说，人们对发生这种事感到震惊，他们聚集在京都动画位于东京和京都的办公室周围，表达他们的感受，表示他们对这一事件的忧虑 。日本首相也对此表示震惊 。
夏皮罗：以上是《华尔街日报》的日本编辑阿拉斯泰尔·盖尔带来的报道 。不仅日本民众，其他地区的民众也对这起火灾表示震惊 。京都动画公司的粉丝遍布全球各地，米凯拉·穆塞尔就是其中一员 。她是加州圣克鲁斯的音频编辑 。她称自已是京都动画工作室的超级粉丝 。
米凯拉·穆塞尔：他们的动画用色无与伦比 。其他大多数动画工作室和京都动画完全不在同一个水平上 。他们的作品可以看到爱，而且他们在作品中注入了很多细节，这体现在动画的连贯性和一般看不到的色彩范围上 。
夏皮罗：请举例说明 。请说说你最喜欢的京都动画的作品 。
穆塞尔：他们制作了一部名为《声之形》的动画电影，这是改编自同名漫画的作品，讲述了一名失聪女孩希望自已能更好地融入世界的故事 。整部作品通过视觉化和颜色来展示女孩的不同情绪，画面非常绚丽，不用眼睛看的话，很难用语言去描述 。但是影片真的很美（笑） 。
穆塞尔：有 。昨天火灾发生后以及今天一整天，“为京阿尼祈祷”一直是推特上的热门标签 。
穆塞尔：对 。人们在标签下分享他们最爱的京都动画作品以及作品中的片段 。人们团结在一起，向京都动画的所有作品致敬 。我们不知道有多少名导演在这起火灾中死亡，因为遇难者名单还没有公布 。现在所有人都抱持最乐观的希望，同时团结在一起 。
夏皮罗：米凯拉·穆塞尔现在在日本音乐产业担任音频编辑 。谢谢你和我们连线 。
1. be suspected of 怀疑（某人有罪）；
He resigned after being suspected of theft.
2. take away 带走，抓走(送去监狱、医院等)；
Two men claiming to be police officers called at the pastor's house and to ok him away.
3. be involved in 卷入的；参与的；与…有密切关联的；
The report says it suspects foul play was involved in the deaths of two journalists.
4. off the charts 打破记录；好极了；
None of it could have happened without off-the-charts courage.