World Brief

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry is bowing the Virtual Image Center to webcast work by new helmers and animators.

The center will digitize films and animation, input them into a database and make them available to potential production partners and distribs via the Internet.

The ministry is doubling its budget for content support and development, to $6.7 million in the 2007 fiscal year.

It estimates that Japan’s content industry and related businesses will grow from the current $117 billion to $161 billion by 2015, employing 2 million people.

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more