9-30-05 (7:57AM EDT)—- Gackt: Admitted Gundam Fanatic
Japanese rockstar Gackt is currently providing the theme music for Sunrise’s Gundam Zeta movies. His song Metamorphoze was released in May as the first movie theme. For the occasion, Gact was in studio at TOKYO FM on the 28th for a live performance of the single and hsi song “Sound In My Life”. Gackt mentioned he was under alot of pressure producing the song because of being such a big Gundam fan. The key focus for him was matching the tune mood correctly to the animation.
9-30-05 (7:57AM EDT)—- TM Revolution’s Nishikawa Pledges Anime Culture Support
Japanese Pop artist T.M.Revolution just released his latest single “Vestige” in Japan last month on the 20th. There was a live perfomance on TOKYO FM shortly after the release. The single has become the new theme song of the TBS animation Gundam SEED DESTINY. After the performance Nishikawa mentioned: “I want to support the animation culture of Japan in music. ” The artist has enjoyed a great amount of success in supplying anime themes, next year will mark the 10th anniversary since his debut. “HEART OF SWORD -Yoakemae (before dawn)-“, his third single released in November 1996 became the theme song for the television anime “Rurouni Kenshin,” and he gained a strong following among both anime and music fans.
9-30-05 (6:45AM EDT)—- Gundam Art Exhibition In Tokyo
The “Kitaru Beki Mirai No Tame Ni” Gundam art exhibition that ran at the Suntory Museum of Art in Osaka from July will be coming to Tokyo. The Ueno area of Tokyo will host the exhibiton November 6th – December 25th at the Ueno Forest Museum. The concept of the exhibition includes modern art renditions based on the first Gundam series.
9-30-05 (6:14AM EDT)—- UPDATE: Takashi Miike On Waru – FINAL
Director King of Japanese Shock Cinema, Takashi Miike has began filming a new movie based on the Maki Hisao (not Hashida Yukari) manga, Waru – FINAL. The news was announced on the 24th in Tokyo. The film will star Matsusaka Keiko (Fall Guy), Aikawa Shou, and Ishibashi Ryou and Maki Hisao (Miike adapted Hisao’s own Yakuza manga into the 1999 feature, Silver). The manga was originally serialized in Kodansha’s Weekly Shonen Magazine in the 1970’s. Going along with the film’s title, this will be an adaptation of the final section of the original manga. Waru – FINAL opens in theaters nationwide across Japan next spring.
9-29-05 (7:06PM EDT)—- FUNimation Announces 24-Hour Digital Anime Network
FUNimation Entertainment, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Navarre Corporation (NASDAQ: NAVR), and one of the nation’s leading brand management and independent home video entertainment companies, is launching the FUNimation Channel(SM), a 24-hour digital network featuring programming of top-rated anime brands from Japan. “The broadcast success we’ve experienced with our anime brands proves that solid TV exposure gives fans the chance to see more great anime and it increases sales and licensing opportunities. This has driven us to pursue additional avenues to get more of our shows broadcast exposure in the United States,” said Gen Fukunaga, president and CEO of FUNimation Entertainment. “The FUNimation Channel will give us the opportunity to bring more of our proven, high-rated anime titles from Japan to fans throughout the United States and expand awareness of anime to whole new audiences.”
FUNimation is a brand management company that manages a full spectrum of rights for many of its brands including broadcasting. The company has already experienced notable broadcast accomplishments with network partners in the United States. “Thanks to engaging content and strong titles, both FUNimation and our network partners have experienced success and we look forward to continuing our relationships going forward,” explains Fukunaga. “The FUNimation Channel is the first step in getting more of our top-rated anime shows broadcast and grabbing a larger share of the growing U.S. anime market.”
FUNimation recently signed an agreement with OlympuSAT, a leading distributor of independent digital programming networks, for the distribution of the FUNimation Channel. OlympuSAT is the exclusive distributor and the FUNimation Channel is now available to video service providers throughout the nation. “FUNimation is dedicated to bringing the best anime to the United States and we are extremely excited to begin working with OlympuSAT to bring these leading shows into homes across the nation via the FUNimation Channel,” said Fukunaga. “OlympuSAT is one of the top distributors of independent digital programming in the United States, and coupled with the high quality anime programming from FUNimation, the FUNimation Channel will be an attractive offering for operators across the nation.”
“The FUNimation Channel features great programming from some of the most engaging anime brands in the United States,” said Colleen Glynn, Senior Vice President of Affiliate Sales and Distribution for OlympuSAT. “We are confident that U.S. operators will see that the FUNimation Channel is the perfect complement and addition to their digital line-ups.” FUNimation also announced plans to launch the FUNimation Channel website (www.funimationchannel.com) within a few weeks. Fans will be able to find more information on the programming, the schedule and the shows. For interested video providers, detailed programming and other exciting network information is available exclusively through OlympuSAT.
9-29-05 (11:30AM EDT)—- ‘Hate Korea’ Manga A Bestseller In Japan
There was a manga published this past summer in Japan that was so controversial that the author simply couldn’t find someone to print it at first, newspapers refused to promote or advertsie it and finding coverage in the media was even difficult. That is, until it started flying off shelves. “Kenkanryu” (Hating Things South Korean) is the creation of Sharin Yamano, who insists the “comfort women” kept in South Korea by imperial Japanese occupational forces during WWII was an entirely fabricated issue. He says he has done his own research and made the manga to dispell the above and other “lies spreading in The Republic Of Korea”. All this comes in the middle of the recent South Korea Style Boom in Japan, Yamano mentions “South Korea Style Boom was produced recently due to mass communication initiation by Japan, it became popular, and there were a lot