4. Sym-Biotic Titan
Its Influence: The Hidden Fortress (1958)
I’m making an exception here. Sym-Biotic Titan is an animated television series created by Genddy Tartakovsky (the same guy responsible for creating Samurai Jack). Star Wars (1977) is most famous for adapting its premise from The Hidden Fortress (1958), but Sym-Biotic Titan—a television series cancelled way before its time—follows Kurosawa’s premise even closer. The princess of a distant planet goes on the run after her father, the king, is deposed. Accompanying her is a warrior, loyal to her cause, and a servant, an artificially intelligent human. Sym-Biotic Titan later dabbles into more traditional “television” genres—high school and mecha—but its Kurosawa influence is crucial to the show’s foundation and framework.