Okamoto Kitchen Anime Introduction
Episode 0: How I got a job on Okamoto Kitchen Food Truck
Okamoto Kitchen is the story of the relaxing and friendly life of a food truck owner…
Yeah just kidding. The food truck industry is a brutal world! Savage races for parking spots, epic shonen food battles, and lots and lots of VIDEO GAMES! The naive Okamoto Kitchen food truck team of Haru, Chizuru, Mickey and Honey try their best to navigate their way around the unforgiving landscape of the Los Angeles food truck scene. Our heroes will have to push through the growing pains not only to figure out how to thrive in the food truck business, but to also discover who really has their best interests at heart. The culinary arts can sometimes be hard to digest.
This project will bring together a smorgasbord of creative and talented individuals, featuring the art of Takuya Saito (Sailor Moon, One Piece, Dragon Ball Super: Broly), the voice talent of Cristina Vee (Sailor Moon, Hunter x Hunter, League of Legends), the music of Layla Lane (Coca-Cola, Killers) and the story of Mykal Williams (Cartoon Universe) & Rafael Hernán Gamboa (Violet, The Long Take, My Kingdom Come: An LA Gangster Rap Story). Blending the tastes of professional Japanese artists and western writers has given us a very interesting flavor!
Our main protagonist and accidental worker at Okamoto Kitchen. She’s a genuinely polite girl who’s full of energy and tries to keep in high spirits to get through tough times. As a result, she’s very good at encouraging others in distress. Despite her optimism, she tends to get panicked and flustered easily. Haru is a HUGE video game nerd and it’s usually what she’s doing when she's not working. Haru is still very much trying to find her place in the world. Other than doing her best in all she does and wanting to get back home to Japan, she doesn’t have any big dreams of her own just yet. Because of this, she deeply admires the passion her brother, Yukio, has for fighting games, her mom has in hospitality, and Chizuru has for the food truck. She hopes these inspirations will help her find her calling some day. Her life seemingly got butchered because of something called “Beast Mode”, and if she’s lucky, it won’t cause too much more trouble during her stay in Los Angeles...
Bringing life to Haru is the legendary Cristina Vee! Cristina has been providing her voice talents to anime, video games, and cartoons for over a decade now. After landing her first major role in Rozen Maiden, she went on to become one of the most recognizable names (and voices) in the industry. Some roles that may ring a bell include: Mio Akiyama (K-On!), Sailor Mars (Sailor Moon Viz Dub), Hawk (Seven Deadly Sins), Shantae (Shantae), Riven (League of Legends), Marinette/Ladybug (Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir), and Killua (Hunter x Hunter) just to name a few!
Haru’s laid-back pet dog that can speak only to Haru. Is it all in Haru’s head, or is Honey hiding it from the world? Even Haru doesn’t know. Her hobbies include: laying around, eating, watching tv shows, and laying around eating while watching tv shows. Her one source of exercise is if Haru throws her a ball, though she would never work so hard on her own accord. Hanging out with the Okamoto Kitchen crew turned out to be the perfect gig for her! She gets to pick off of people’s scraps at events. Honey has always been Haru’s rock. Without her, Haru might fall off the rails - no really… like… it could actually get very bad.
The founder of the Okamoto Kitchen food truck. A very precise and genius cook. She spends all her free time perfecting recipes and experimenting with flavors, poring over tomes. However, since she devotes so much of her time to cooking, she lacks abilities in other areas, like business sense and customer service. While not a cold person, she has little interests outside of cooking. People tend to find her rude since she gets bored so easily. She’ll listen to Haru all day though, considering her an amazing person and close friend whom she can depend on to pick up the area’s she lacks in. Her biggest dream is to open a restaurant, but decided to start with opening the Okamoto Kitchen food truck instead since it was more financially viable. Chizuru also has a huge disdain for those that step over other people to get ahead. Above all, she knows that she can always depend on her team to help her reach her goals.
Mickey works on the Okamoto Kitchen food truck, and much like Haru, helps keep Chizuru’s scatterbrained tendencies in check in his own way. He’s sort of awkward, but an extremely nice and capable guy that will always come to bat for his friends. While he tries to joke around a lot, his material doesn’t always land, which really highlights his graceless nature. This would make his dating life rough if he even had one to begin with. His friendship with Chizuru stems from his adoration for cars and the two of them nerding out about their respective interests, hence why he’s the go-to driver on the team.
Ling - The owner and face of the Dumpling Diva food truck. Ling was originally a member of a Chinese mega idol group called ‘Super Idol 5000’ which literally consists of 5000 female performers! She left after a while, wanting to pursue her own venture and make a name for herself while finding her own identity. She brings a lot of attention to Dumpling Diva with her cute persona and talented vocal skills. When the crowd gathers around and all eyes are on her to witness her talents, it makes her feel more alive than anything in the world!
Rodney - After his father introduced him to old Bruce Lee movies as a child, Rodney became fascinated by Chinese culture. Now a skilled martial artist, Rodney not only works on the truck with Ling, but serves as her bodyguard. His respect and admiration for her knows no bounds, as he was actually a fan of her group before they even met!
Javi - Owner of the Diabolicos food truck. Due to his extensive knowledge of trade secrets and years of experience, he’s one of the greatest masterminds in the business, occasionally offering pieces of his knowledge to Chizuru and the gang as somewhat of a mentor. Javi has sort of a “Been there, done that” attitude towards the food truck industry. Because of his intense leadership, Diabolicos is constantly doing exceptionally well at all their lunch stops and big events.
Spike - A worker for Diabolicos around Haru’s age. While he isn’t quite as jaded as Javi when it comes to the food truck business, he’s still pretty knowledgeable about different techniques. Given their mutual love for gaming, it didn’t take long for he and Haru to befriend each other. He’ll even sometimes give her pointers on how to be a better worker for Okamoto Kitchen. His enthusiasm for video games can sometimes turn into anger when facing off against Tetsu. Spike tries to be a good sport, but he just can’t wrap his brain around Tetsu’s unreasonably high skill level.
A ramen truck owned by former TV star Yuu joined by his trusty helpers, Futoshi and Genki. Fans flock to his truck seemingly because of his good looks and charisma - certainly not for the mediocre ramen. However, it’s not just Yuu’s pretty face that bring in customers, as he uses a secret technique to hypnotize people into falling in love with the ramen. Don’t worry, though! It only lasts until the ramen is finished… for most people at least.
This truck consists of a Japanese team who never grew out of the old 80s “yanki” style for “delinquents” (not like that one baseball team). In modern day Japan, they are outcasts because the style is long gone and ridiculed so they tried to bring what they were doing to the US. Unfortunately, Americans have no history or knowledge of the style, so most are confused as to what in the world they’re even doing. The employees Taizo & Osamu are hard-headed buffoons who act tough to try and intimidate customers into buying their food. It works, but only because people think it’s part of the act. The owner, Junko, tries to keep them in line. She has a great respect for Okamoto Kitchen and appreciates Haru’s spunk.
A spaghetti truck consisting of women in their late 50s (and possibly beyond?), run by Ruby. The team has a tendency of trying too hard to look young again. This tends to work in Ruby’s favor however, as she has a bad habit of reeling in young men and breaking their fragile hearts. In fact, Ruby was a great inspiration for one of the team members, Summer. She used to be a male pro-wrestler until she met Ruby and her sense of style. Summer soon accepted what she had always known deep down and decided to transition shortly after, joining Ruby back in her golden years. Now, Sexy Spaghetti is known for flirting, tomato sauce, and pile drivers.
Haru’s childhood friend from back in Japan. Some time after leaving Japan and coming to America, he became the world’s best professional fighting game player! When he’s participating in a big tourney, he’s extremely focused and somewhat cold. Maybe that’s why he’s the greatest? Still, it’s strange. While he wasn’t entirely un-friendly towards Haru when she first arrived in Los Angeles, he wasn’t quite… himself either.
Creating extensive pieces of art is no simple task. In order for our vision to be fully realized, we’re going to need your help. If we reach our goal of $48,000, 100% of the proceeds will go towards creating a 10-part series of fully voiced and produced comic dubs following the adventures of Haru and the rest of the team. These comic dubs will feature a small amount of animation via mouth movements, facial expressions, scaling, panning effects, isolated objects in motion, and basic limb movement. Essentially what this means is that it won't be quite a full-fledged anime in terms of animation, but more like a moving comic of sorts. These episodes will run around 3-5 minutes each. Although these episodes won’t be fully animated, there are still a ton of things that go into creating something like this and a whole team of talented individuals we will need to pay including: artists, writers, musicians, sound engineers, voice actors, and editors.
If we manage to reach $9,000 above our initial goal we will be able to produce a Japanese language version with English subtitles in addition to the English dub.
Of course, we’d love to go further beyond and complete a version of the first saga we have in mind for this story. So if we are able to double our amount to a stretch goal of $98,000, we’ll be able to make it a total of 24 comic dub webtoons as opposed to just 10.
To take it a step further, our next stretch goal of $150,000 will allow us to create those same for 24 episodes, but extended to around 8-10 minutes each!
Once again, these mini episodes would unfortunately not be animated completely. However, if we can somehow to make it to our last stretch goal of $340,000, we’ll be able to get a full-length, 22-minute ANIMATED pilot produced. Yes… fully animated. This would mean an extended story all in the style of an official anime.
Time to talk about loot! Being anime lovers ourselves, we know how important it is to represent your favorite waifus and husbandos so the rest of the world knows they're taken. As a thank you for your support, we're going to deck you out with t-shirts (featuring the eccentric cast you'll come to know and love), keychains, posters, artbooks, figures, signed memorabilia & more!
If you really want to go further beyond the loot and get those experience points, we've got bragging rights in the form of shoutouts & producer credits, a special meet and greet with Haru's voice actress, Cristina Vee, and a day on the real-life Okamoto Kitchen food truck!
Of course, your rewards will vary depending on your pledge tier, so be sure to check out the support section on the side for more details!
- Creative Director / Original Story: Gerald Abraham
- Producer: Rumiko Kinoshita
- Voice Director / The voice of Haru Umesaki: Cristina Vee
- Character Designer (Haru Umesaki, Honey): Takuya Saitou
- Character Designer (Chizuru, Mickey, Food Truck Teams): Azusa Saitou PN 'ASA'
- Flashback Sequence Illustrator: Miho Abe
- Present Day Food Truck Sequence: Studio Engi
- Matte Painter: Toshiharu Yuda
- Character Designer: PN 'Kotobukisuzu'
- Story: Mykal Williams, Rafael Hernán Gamboa
- Theme song & Music: Layla Lane (Hidehito Ikumo & Valerie Stern)
- Assistant Producer: Marcus Chavez
- Editing: Industry Visual Effects
Risks and challenges
We specialize in anime food, but this is the first time we're trying to raise money to realize our dream of creating an actual anime based on our real-life experiences! As you can see from Episode 0, we do indeed have a legitimate team of highly skilled individuals that are passionate about creating amazing content that you will love!
With an online merchandise shop currently up and running, we are already very much familiar with delivering customer rewards in a timely manner.
- (60 days)