Those who have had a chance to see it already know that the second season of the anime adaptation of Paru Itagaki's popular manga Beastars, produced by Orange animation studio, launched on Japanese Netflix yesterday, January 7th, 2021. Of course, fans are excited about Episode 13, but the new opening animation sequence, set to the song 怪獣 Kaijū (monster) by Yoasaobi, is also a hot topic. If you haven't seen the opening sequence, check it out below, free of opening titles:

While some fans may be disappointed that it's not another stop-motion animation like the amazing Season 1 opening sequence, and others may be disappointed it mostly used content from the first season, Yoasabi fans will surely be pleased, and many will agree that the visuals are stylish.

However, although it's a well-known fact that Beastars is animated through computer graphics, as it turns out, the opening animation sequence uses even more impressive technology.

AI-generated background art by rinna

rinna Co., Ltd. is an AI development company founded in June 2020 by a spin-out team that was conducting research on AI chatbots in Microsoft's AI & Research division. Recently, they have been developing technology for drawing images applying GAN (General Adversarial Networks).

Using a drawing model that learns the works of more than 200 famous historical painters, their technology makes it possible to create new original creations, as you can see in the examples below.

For the Beastar's opening animation sequence, rinna was tasked with creating the background art using a version of their AI technology which can create a mind-blowing total of 1026 patterns generated through GAN from 30 major art styles. Incidentally, this technology can be used in fields such as industrial design, clothing design, and package design.

Background art selected for Beastars opening sequence

Now that you have the benefit of this knowledge, take a look at the AI-generated background art seen in stills from the opening animation sequence. Hopefully, you'll now have a deeper appreciation for the pioneering efforts of the Beastars creative team.

To learn more about rinna Co., Ltd., visit their official website here.

By - Ben K.