Osamu Tanabe (田辺 修 Tanabe Osamu?) was born in 1965 in Okayama prefecture and began his animation career at Oh Production in 1987. He later became a freelancer and worked on productions such as Akira, Nippon Animation's Peter Pan, Like the Clouds, Like the Wind, Hakkenden, Junkers Come Here, the movie version of A Dog of Flanders, Cat Soup, Golden Boy 3, Animatrix and ex-Ghibli director Hiroyuki Morita's Bokurano.
Tanabe started at Studio Ghibli as an in-betweener on Takahata's Grave of the Fireflies, then worked as supervisor of key animation on Only Yesterday and Pom Poko. On My Neighbors the Yamadas he worked alongside Yoshiyuki Momose doing storyboards, setting scenes, and directing the animation (Momose handled these duties for the first half of that film, Tanabe did the honors for the second half).
After Yamadas, Tanabe continued working with the art style developed for that film, working on the series of shorts the studio put out during that time, starting with Momose's Ghiblies Episode 2. After animating Takahata's segment of Winter Days Tanabe was given director's duties on the CM spots for Asahi Beverages' Delicious Tea, Lawson's Spirited Away tie-in ads, and for the Yomiuri newspaper syndicate ads, including the music clip Doredore no Uta (Which? Which? Song).
Like Momose, who formed his own Studio Kajino, Tanabe also established a studio in 2007, Studio 4.
See the Osamu Tanabe (books) page for a list of books or articles illustrated by, written by, or about Tanabe.