25 dead in suspected arson attack on Japanese animation studio

25 people are dead in a suspected arson attack on an animation studio in Kyoto, Japan. / Source: (CNN)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT/CNN) -- At least 25 people are dead after a suspected arson attack on a well-known animation studio in Kyoto, Japan.

Japanese officials said the death toll is expected to rise. 36 people were injured in the fire, some critically.

A Kyoto police spokesperson said the suspect is a 41-year-old man who also had a backpack full of knives.

Investigators said the suspect apparently poured gasoline around the studio then set it on fire.

The suspect was hospitalized with serious burn injuries and police do not expect to be able to question him on Thursday.

The fire was started just after 10 a.m. on Thursday.

48 fire engines were called to the scene after a resident reported hearing the sounds of an explosion coming from the studio.

According to a report from CNN, Kyoto Animation -- known as KyoAni -- produces animations and publishes anime novels, comics and books, according to its website. Among Japan's most well known studios, its most famous works include "Free!", manga series "K-On!", the anime TV adaptation of "Haruhi Suzumiya" and "Violet Evergarden" which Netflix picked up in 2018. The company's philosophy as posted on its website includes keeping a "humanitarian" corporate culture and believes that "promoting the growth of people is equal to creating the brightness of works."

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