Posts in Category: news

Polysics On Moyashimon TV Ending

J-Pop electronic unit Polysics will provide the ending theme “Rocket” for the Moyashimon TV anime scheduled to start broadcast in October. The single streets in Japan on November 21st. The group has a North American tour planned for October – November 2007.


Otaking Goes On Dieting Binge

ZakZak has a current pic of Studio Gainax’s Otaking Toshio Okada. Their article discusses how the 49 years company’s co-founder, shed his former 117 kilos persona to arrive at his current 67 kilos one. At one point he said he had to buy his pants in a wrestler specialty store but dipped in recent times to around 50 kilos. He used to post images of all the food he ate to his blog but got a lot of comments saying he was eating way too much. He estimates he took in as many as 4000-4500 calories a day at the high point. Okada is believed to be the inspiration for the pudgy otaku lead character Tanaka in Gainax’s 1990 OVA Otaku No Video. He says he realized that by overeating he was gambling with his body and by decreasing his weight he would win. Therefore Okada made a conscious investment in what he ate and drank from a certain point and set a goal of consuming only 1500 calories a day. One of his techniques included cutting a Mega Mac into 4 segments, eating only 1 and throwing away 3 of them.


Original Macross TV Series And Movie Set For DVD Release In Japan

The American ADV and Animeigo remastered and cleaned up versions of the original Super Dimensional Macross TV series generated a lot of buzz in past years. Now comes Japan’s version with Bandai Visual’s pending 25th anniversary HD remastered DVD release of both the original series and Do You Remember Love. The 960 minute TV BOX will retail for 39,900 Yen and market on February 22. The film will sell for 10290 Yen in 280 minutes set and is pegged for a December 21st regions Japanese release.


Chinpui Region 2 DVD BOX Release

Virtually unknown outside of Japan, the 1989-1991 Asahi anime TV series adaptation of Fujio F Fujiko’s (Doraemon) Chinpui is headed to DVD for the first time as part of a new DVD-BOX release from Geneon Entertainment. The release is set for December 7 at 60,000 Yen. Chinpui holds the distinction of being IGPX Director Mitsuru Hongo’s first work (where he served as Chief Director) and superstar anime voice actress Megumi Hayashibaru’s professional debut. The BOX includes 112 episodes and the movie in an 11 DVD set. A special CD and booklet are included as extras.


WW2 Moe Mecha Anthropomorphism

An unusual new System Soft Alpha Windows PC computer game is generating some buzz in Japanese otaku circles entitled Moe Moe 2 Ji Taisen. In the game, you literally take on the role of cutesy anime style girls who have the appendages of World War 2 Era aircraft and tanks. The game system follows an adventure/simulation strategy / visual novel format. The various girls hail from and sport dress styles, and mecha weaponry from their respective countries. The release is scheduled in November for 9,240 Yen. The cadre of high profile character designers assembled for the project is generating a lot of attention. They include; Mikimoto Haruhiko (Macross), Hiroyuki Kitazume, Rokudou Shinshi, Fujisawa Takashi, Usami Haruka, Jiji, and Kanke Tomonori. Tora Yamamoto conceived the original project.


TAF2007 Exclusive Report: Velvet Underworld

  • 11th Feb 2007
  • News

By Jonah Morgan

During my perusal of the Wedge Holdings exhibition area at The Tokyo International Anime Fair 2007 I happened across an edgy looking anime poster (high-res enlargement) that stuck out to me. With big English text it read “Velvet Underworld” and reminded me of music for some reason…. Besides the obvious mainstream classic American rock allusion overtones, this was the title to the opening theme of 1998’s Weiss Kruez (Knight Hunters) TV series. As it turns out, both are the creative effort of Takehito Koyasu, best known as a highly prolific anime seiyuu (ie: Mosquiton, Zechs Marquise in Gundam Wing, Ilpalazzo in Excel Saga). He’s always competed with Akio Ohtsuka and Hikaru Midorikawa for my favorite male Japanese voice talent ranking. Having gone through my “must watch every anime produced” phase in the 1990’s, I saw Koyasu’s work quite a bit. His official title is “editor” and credited with conceiving the original story on the VU project, which at this point remains unformatted (ie: TV, Movie etc..), being referred to simply as “animation” and “multimedia”. Character designs come courtesy Kuya Sakaki, production via RADIX mobanimation, Wedge Holdings. The producer is listed as Koichi Kikuchi, Planning and production are being carried out by Velvet Kingdom. An image song titled “ALTERNATIVE” has already been created, Shiu Kagaya, composed by Kazuya Nishioka and performed by The Man himself. The target audience at this point for the anime are women in their late 20’s.

The story occurs in Tokyo, Uruyu Tomoe is a new fresh detective who was seriously injured after becoming involved in a messy affair. The mysterious girl named Velvet rescued him and he survived, miraculously recovering. In an operation his left hand was replaced with an artificial one. His past memory before the time of his incident remains hazy. He was robbed of everything and the names of thirteen murderers who attacked him were engraved in his skin at that time. Tomoe is recruited as an underworld executioner by Velvet and inherited the legendary assassin’s code name, Aya. He swears vengeance, seeking out the thirteen murderers one by one in an effort to bring out the ringleader. Velvet, alias V, who is the granddaughter of the superintendant general of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police recruits criminals (who have excellent abilities) to the underworld in order to have them execute outrageous villains cut loose by the court system and who are beyond the realm of arrest. Now there are 13 troops who have been retrained as underworld executioners including Aya. He organizes his the team depending on the situation, sometimes taking one person and sometimes all 13. The sides lock in battle, each utilizing their own secret martial arts fighting techniques.

It’s still the early production days for Velvet Underworld but Koyasu mentioned the response to the project at TAF was pretty strong, cast auditions are going forward now.


Anime News Service – September 4th-8th Anime News

9-8-06 (7:43PM EDT)—- New Evengelion Movies: Will Original Voice Cast Be Reprised?

With 4 new animated Evangelion movies now confirmed and in production there has been some questioning regarding the Japanese voice casting. All of the main original members of the TV and Movie cast are still living but some have retired or moved away from voice acting work. Megumi Hayashibara (Rei Ayanami) had retired for a period but then returned to seiyuu work. Likewise, Yuko Miyamura (Asuka Langely Sohryu) is thought to have put some distance between herself and voiceover work. A comment from one of her her last known public appearances can be viewed at her official website at the above link mentioning paid travelling expenses would be a requirement to persue any further vocal work.

9-8-06 (7:22PM EDT)—- Update: Evangelion Shin Gekijou Ban

A few new details regarding the new Eva project, Evangelion Shin Gekijou Ban from the October, 2006 Japanese edition of Newtype Magazine:
– The cover illustration featuring characters Ayanami Rei Nagisa Kaworu is by Shunji Suzuki. Suzuki had worked on the Shin Seiki Evangelion TV series as chief animator and on the End Of Evangelion movie as an animation director. Although not officially connected by name to the new project as yet, his image appearing on the Newtype cover would suggest involvement.
– Images released so far depict Rei Ayanami in observably more provacative and animated moods than before. How will she change? The silent and submissively naturered character with her trademark blue hair and style made her an all time fan favorite of otaku everywhere, catapulting her to the top of the monthly Animage character poll for many, many issues.
– From Toshimichi Ohtsuki’s interview: Just before this new project started up director Hideaki Anno rewatched the entire original television series back to back. Ohtsuki relays that he heard Anno say for the first time: “Eva is interesting, I did not think it was so interesting (laughing).” The comment almost broght Ohtsuki to tears.
– Ohtsuki goes on to say that it is true Eva has become a smash hit animation. However, it’s success caused misunderstanding and disarray has arisen in the animation field because of it. An overproduction of inferrior works was caused.
– Ohtsuki says the Newtype cover image featuring Rei and Kaworu symbolizes the new movie project. Japanese fans have questioned whether this is a hint at Rei And Kaworu’s possibly being at the center of the new story or getting expanded focus in the course of the story of the films.

9-8-06 (6:23PM EDT)—- Newtype: REBUILD OF EVANGELION Commercials

Kadokawa Shoten has posted 2 Quicktime radio commercials (although as yet not the video commercial, the screenshots of which went worldwide) for the October, 2006 Japanese edition of Newtype Magazine. The spots are narrated by seiyuu Noriko Kuwajima. The magazine, which features an exclusive on 4 upcoming Evangelion movies was released in Japan today, Saturday, September 9th.

9-7-06 (11:03PM EDT)—- Binbou Shimai Monogatari Sequel Coming

According to a September 9 entry in Episode Director Keiichi Sugiyama’s blog, the Binbou Shimai Monogatari TV series may get a sequel animation. The news comes as the 9th episode (of 10) airs on TV Asahi in Japan.

9-7-06 (10:11PM EDT)—- Aquaplus Comes Out Against Doujinshi

Aquaplus, the Japanese company behind such hugely fan favorite manga and anime as To Heart, Comic Party, Utawarerumono and a host of lesser known underground favorites has revised it’s rules regarding the use of it’s properties in doujinshi and fanfiction. They ask fans not use their original material directly in the production of such works. Distribution of such material at events (like Comike), websites or mail order venues is also prohibited. The rules were first amended to the above link on September 1st. Third party observers have pointed out the doujinshi market of such material may now be a very real threat to mainstream publishers and copyright holders in Japan.

9-7-06 (7:32PM EDT)—- Shueisha: Obata’s Works Not To Be Affected At Present

The Mainichi Shimbun contacted Shueisha Thursday regarding their position on the arrest of 37 year ol illustrator Takeshi Obata. The company publishes his Hikaru No Go (23 volumes – 10 million copies sold) and Death Note (12 volumes – 20 million copies sold) manga. According to the Shueisha public relations office they are presently checking facts in the matter and there are no plans on the table at this time for any of his works to be affected (suspension of publication etc..). An effort to get a position from Nippon Television which will broadcast the Death Note animation adaptation from October was fruitless as the person responsible for issuing a response was not present to comment at the time of press.

9-7-06 (7:07PM EDT)—- Suga Shikao Puts Out New Album

After providing theme songs for Death Note and XXX HOLiC Suga Shikao has released his first original album ‘PARADE’ after an interval of about two years. Arriving in Japanese stores on September 6th, the album will be accompanied by the first single “Gogo No Parade” (Parade In The Afternoon). Hi past anime / manga related hits will be incorporated into the album along with new material. Also for the first time a DVD collecting varios music videos will be released to the public.

9-7-06 (6:45PM EDT)—- Paprika Gets “So-So” Reaction In Venice

According to the Asahi Shimbun Satoshi Kon’s Paprika has received a “so-so” overall international response and review at the 63rd Venice International Film Festival.

9-7-06 (6:07PM EDT)—- Itochu Becomes Strategic Investment Partner in Comic Book Movies, LLC

Comic Book Movies, LLC, a new franchise-building entertainment company based in Hollywood established by veteran film producer Michael Uslan and partner M. Jonathan Roberts welcomes the Itochu Corporation as its strategic investment partner. As a result of this investment, Itochu Corporation now holds a 10% share of CBM and becomes CBM’s merchandise partner in Japan. The investment is a dramatic step for Itochu into the world of film, television and digital media, and is expected


Anime News Service – January 18 – May 7 Anime News

5-7-06 (11:59PM EDT)—- Gundam SEED To Become Animated Film

Sunrise has announced Gundam SEED will become an animated theatrical feature to be directed by Mitsuo Fukuda. Although it will based on the 2002-2004 tv anime, the plot is expected to be all new. This marks the first original Gundam Movie since Mobile Suit Gundam F91 opened in 1991. T.M. Revolution will perform the theme song to the film and also made an announcement at “SonyMusic Anime Fes.06” in Tokyo on the 7th. The event, held at Shibuya AX over Saturday and Sunday of this past weekend drew a total of 30,000. A release date has not yet been announced.

5-6-06 (1:44AM EDT)—- Recognition Of The Term “MOE” In Japan

A term commonly used among otaku to refer to a fetish for or love for characters in video games or anime and manga, recognition of “MOE” is growing wider in Japan. According to a recent survey conducted by the 2006 CESA Ippanseikatsu Mono Chousahoukoku Kaki “2006 CESA General Dweller Investigation Report” 60% of those examined were aware of the term. CESA is the Computer Entertainment Supplier’s Association, based in Japan and started in 1996. 2.4% of the whole woman’s sample said they had used it. Those who answered “Know it” was 26.7% “Heard it” was 36.8% and “Do not know it” was 32.5%. Among men those who answered “Use it” was 4.4% and “Know” was 36.2%. Across both sexes in their late teens through early 30’s 40% said they knew of the term. 12.1% of 15-19 year old women said they used it alot, 11.1% of 20-24 year old womenh said they used it alot. In Men 8.9% of 20-24 years old admitted using the term alot. The research was carried out in the Kansai region including 1103 men and women 3-79 years old.

5-5-06 (8:22AM EDT)—- Nagasaki 1945: Angelus No Kane To Screen Globally

ANS has reported in the past on the Mushi Productions / Kaishagaiyou anime film Nagasaki 1945: Angelus No Kane, following the completion of the English subbed version in January, it was announced April 29th that the film will screen outside Japan for the first time. Screenings are planned for the U.S. in Nevada and in Germany and France. Director Arihara Seiji wants viewers who are even partially aware of the occurrence in Nagasaki to consider the fact that nuclear weapons are all over the world now. The Internationales Trickfilmfestival 2006 held in the German city of Stuttgart returned comments that 1945 was a “significant social work”. Having passed the initial examination, a formal invitation to screen at the film festival was sent. The showing occured on May 2nd. Next, the French Festival international du film d’animation a Annecy will hold a screening as where it’s being reviewed as a special invitation work in the beginning of June. Finally, the Atomic Testing Museum in the US state of Nevada is also scheduling a screening at an atomic bomb exhibition to held in August.

5-5-06 (7:45AM EDT)—- Anime Style Mecha Battles To Be Reproduced In Space

If one Japanese company gets it’s way, remote controlled robots will participate in combative sports matches in low Earth orbit as early as a targeted date of October 10, 2010 (10/10/10). “Robo-One Uchuu Taikai” (English title: “ROBO-ONE in the Space”) is an event being promoted by the ROBO-ONE Committee who already regularly hosts robot duels under the constraints of 1G of gravity in Tokyo. The projected launch / payload costs are said to approach 200 million Yen. The plan calls for a 125,000-cubic centimeter satellite loaded with 4 robots to go into a 400-600km high polar orbit. Once deployed the robots will fight while tied to a 5 meter tether connected to the satellite. A camera attached to the satellite will broadcast the battle to earth and allow the earth-bound pilots to control their actions via remote control. The satellite’s orbit will carry it over Japan four times a day, each fighting match will run around 10 minutes. According to the rules, the robots can propel themselves with gas jets, a robot is considered thrown out of the ring (similar to sumo) when it’s tether is fully taut. The company plans to use a combination of foreign and domestic Japanese rockets to launch to get there. ROBO-ONE has already designed high quality robots for toy and anime production companies. Indeed it’s an expressed goal of the committee to specifically reproduce space battles similar to those seen in Japanese animation. Official Website: www.robo-one.com.

5-5-06 (5:30AM EDT)—- Hobby Japan Establishes Light Novel Imprint

Hobby Japan, well known for their magazine which covers the action figure and model scene in Japan, has announced an entry into pocket novels with their new HJ bunko publishing label. Junior high school students through men and women in their thirties are the target audience. As for the types of fiction to be expected HJ has said they don’t want to conform to any genre, opting to publish “interesting stories” of all types. The first novel release will go sale from July 1st and a new one is scheduled to follow on the first of every month thereafter. Anime fans should note talented artist Mutsumi Inomata (Tales Of Eternia, BrainPowerd) will illustrate the inagural novel’s cover (illustration seen left). Writers due to release books for HJ Bunko include: Takehiro Arihara (TAKE FIVE), Junichi Osako (Specter), Kaihana Daisuke (Ragnarok Online), Shinya Kasai (Anireon!), Okina Kamino (Asobiniiku yo !), Kimura Kou (PetoPeto-san), Yu Godai (Karuta Tsukai no Kagami), Ichiro Sakaki (Scrapped Princess), Takashi Shoji (STARSHIP GIRL YAMAMOTO YOHKO, Twinkle Starship), Kanou Arashi (Takadono Madoka), Natsu Midori (Idenshi – DNA Nohimitsu), Reiko Hikawa (Gude Crest), Fujiwara Seiya (Denshi Kiyoukou Purachinamu Chiyairudo), Miyuki Shoutarou (Lost Moment), Hachihara Yuuki (will be making professional debut with HJ Bunko), Watanabe Masaki (Yuu Nagino Machi).

5-5-06 (4:59AM EDT)—- Slayers Cast Reunites For 10th Anniversary

It really has been 10 years since the first Slayers TV series graced the airwaves on TV Tokyo. 11 years to this


Anime News Service – November 15-30 Anime News

  • 10th Feb 2006
  • News

11-30-05 (11:33 PM EST)—- Showji Kawamori At Akiba Robot Festival

Macross creator Showji Kawamori was a featured guest at the Akihabara Robot Cultural Festival 2005″. The event was held on November 26-27 at Akihabara Daibiru in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo. Attendees could do several things there such as joining a “Robot Production Classroom” that allowed them to learn about robot assembly, design, and technological development. An “Advanced Robot Seminar” and “Robot Bazaar” that featured goods on sale related to robots was also there. Kawamori spoke at the “Advanced Robot Seminar”, just coming off of his latest work as a mechanical designer and animation director on the Aquarion TV series. Source: Livedoor News

11-30-05 (10:36 PM EST)—- New TMS President Appointed

Tokushi Koga has been selected to be the new president of Tokyo Movie Shinsha. He was formerly the Managing Director of TMS and hails from Sega who recently bought the longtime producer of Japanese Animation in October of this year. Koga joined the TMS in 1995.

11-30-05 (4:22 AM EST)—- Geneon Postpones Hellsing OVA

Geneon Entertainment’s WILDGEESE posted a statement mentioning their release of the HELLSING OVA Volume 1, originally due on December 9th, will now be postponed to January 25, 2006. This includes those who reserved it. An apology was issued to fans and customers from the staff who mention they did not want to compromise the quality. It’s also asked from the fans that they hold out and brace for the January release.

11-30-05 (3:48 AM EST)—- Sony Drops DAT

Last week in Japan, Sony announced it would end the domestic shipment of its digital audio tape recorder (DAT) standard in the first ten days of December. The portable “TCD-D1000” will become their last DAT recorder product. Sony will still support repair and DAT tape sales. The company sent a signal they were dropping backing for the standard in 2004 when they ceased production of their deck type units. This left only the TCD-D100 as the only DAT recorder in their company’s inventory. The volume of shipments of the unit was said to hover around only 100 per month. Those in search of parts for past devices are already aware of how scarce they are to come by. Sony first marketed DAT in 1987 and has sold around 660,000 related products since then. The recorders were extremely popular among journalists in the field recording statements and interviews. Sony has since introduced its integrated circuit and compact disc-based recorders such as the ultra cool $2000 PCM-D1 and HI-MD. DAT was attractive due to its compact size and storage factor of high-quality audio files in sampling frequencies of 48/44.1/32kHz. The first Sony recorder was the deck type “DTC-1000ES” marketed in March of 1987.

11-30-05 (12:01 AM EST)—- Wao Discontinues University Plans

Wao Corporation, who aimed at the establishment of Japan’s first graduate school for the animation profession has announced it’s discontinuing the university project as of November 28th. The prime reason for the move is The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology revealed it cannot authorize the application of the university at this time. A council ruled on the recommendation, speaking for education minister Kenji Kosaka. the council decided it doesn’t have enough people who would dedicate themselves to education and research in animation. According to Wao Corporation, there was a difference in the interpretation of the text of university establishment standards between themselves and the Ministry. Both creative and business side courses were to be offered. Wao’s bid was drawn up last year after Japan’s fundamentals of Education Law were revised allowing graduate schools in the form Ltd. corporations to be established this year. Several private and public companies in Japan have followed suit one after another to establish their own schools.

11-29-05 (11:57 PM EST)—- 1 Million Gundam SEED DESTINY DVD’s Sold

Bandai Visual has announced it’s sold over 1 million copies of Gundam SEED DESTINY on DVD in Japan. With a release starting in February of this year and stretching to the latest which streeted November 25th over 10 volumes of the series have been released in a digital medium. The DVD run is expected to conclude in February 2006 when volume 13 is released.

11-29-05 (10:40 PM EST)—- Blood Manga Preview

The Official Blood+ Website has pdf files featuring sample artwork from the upcoming manga spin-offs of the new Blood anime series. Thanks to Daniel for the link.

11-29-05 (1:40 AM EST)—- Japanese Box Office

Kogyo Tsushinsha Japanese Box Office Rankings November 26-27
1. Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire
2. Always -Sunset on Third Street-
3. A Moment To Remember
4. The Brothers Grimm
5. Until The Lights Come Back
6. In Her Shoes
7. Spring Snow
8. Elizabethtown
9. Into The Sun
10. Under The Same Moon

11-29-05 (1:20AM EST)—- Fate/stay night Manga

Type Moon’s insanely fan popular PC Game, Fate/stay night will be adapted to manga. Kadokawa Shoten’s Shonen ACE will serialize the comic from the February 2006 issue of the magazine (on sale 12/26). Story by Type-Moon, Illustrations by Nishiwaki Datto. As an aside the official website of the forthcoming anime by Geneon Entertainment now hosts video clips of the TV CM Preview and Shop Preview.

11-29-05 (1:00 AM EST)—- Katsuhiko Nagata Manga

The story of an Olympic wrestler (and silver medalist in his class of 69 kg/152.15 lbs & under) and martial artist / K1 fighter Katsuhiko Nagata is being adapted to manga. KINGS ROAD- The Katsuhiko Nagata Story by Aoki Ryou and Uhyo Suke will run for 4 weeks in Weekly Young Sunday Magazine (Shogakukan) from the December 1st-22nd issues. Katsuhiko Nagata announced he’s entering Japanese professional wrestling on the 25th of this month.

11-29-05 (12:12 AM EST)—- Saiunkoku Monogatari To Be Animated

Yukino Sai and Yura Kairi’s Light Novel/Manga series Saiunkoku Monogatari (published by Kadokawa Shoten/Beans Bunko) will be adapted to anime sometime in 2006. A Drama CD


ANS Review – Dinomania Hand Painted Miniature Dinosaurs And Prehistoric Creatures

  • 15th Jul 2004
  • News

By Jonah Morgan

Japanese Model-Maker Kaiyodo, confectionary giant UHA Mikakuto and San Jose based Prototopia and first annonced their deal to distribute the Dinomania Hand Painted Minature Dinosars and Prehistoric Creatures collection in the U.S.A, Canada and Mexico on May 18th of this year. After Selling 20,000,000 units of the set in Japan there are high hopes this set may take off in the North American Market. Japan has historically set the trends for the U.S. collectors’ market and the idea with the release is to appeal to both collectors and educators across all age groups.

Late last week ANS recieved a package in mail from Prototopia with a few random samples from the first 24 piece Dinomania set for review. The first thing that strikes you about the packaging is it’s triangular nature, the box itself is fairly small, only weighing 5 grams. Very colorful eyecatch graphic on the front. The set is packaged alot like baseball cards, you have no idea which dinosaur you are going open in a particualr box. So a very cool mystery element for the collector. Open the box and 3 chromofoil wrappers fall out 2 smaller ones containing candy and the larger one with a “limited edition” seal containing the model pieces. Business coming before pleasure, the choice was made to assemble the model first. Tearing the top of the pouch a bit too quickly I saw a flurry of tiny plastic pieces hit the carpet along with a fact sticker on my dismembered dinosaur and a sheet listing others in the collection.

With the adult hand in mind the pieces to some of the models can be incredibly tiny depending on what creature you end up with. The assembly is totally intuitive, no stage 5 complexity warning needed here, there are no instuctions required for assembly. With the model completed I found myself looking at the aquatic dwelling Hemicyclaspis. It’s resemblence is a bit like the modern sucker fish I have seen in some aquariums. Now I know why the hand painted nature of the models is so heavily touted, the attention to detail in the paint color and detail is striking, and the engraving, simply incredible, easily the most detailed dinosaur models released in America at the scale retail pricepoint.

A great virtue of this first release is if you’re the dino fan out there who thinks you’ll wind up with same household familiar dinosaur names that have become movie stars you’re sorely mistaken. Because at this point when I was holding my new Hemicyclaspis it occurred to me that I had never heard of nor seen this creature before and I thought I knew dinosaurs pretty well….. Looking at the full collection roster again there was only one dinosaur in the set of 24 that I could honestly say I recognized, Plesiosaurus…. Some of these creatures I never thought could exist on the Earth…. the almost alien Pieurocysties or Hallucigenia….. Some of these creatures looked like animals walking around today…. The Pelican like Tapejara Imperator or the Copeteryx which has the head of a Duck and the body of a Penguin…. So the set has the potential to be a great educational tool, it makes one see the relations in life existing on the Earth now and in the distant past and marvel at things that may never be seen by human eyes until landing upon on another world perhaps. The final part of this review will end on the 2 pieces of Chocolate candy that come with each collectible, it’s pretty good.

The Dinomania collectables are sold at museum, hobby, educational, comic, and specialty retail stores throughout North America. DinoMania Series-One is a limited-edition collection featuring 24 unique dinosaur models plus one additional “secret” dinosaur, each sold separately. For more information on DinoMania go to www.dinomania.com, www.promotopia.com, www.kaiyodo.co.jp and www.uha-mikakuto.co.jp.

All Stories, Graphics And Material © Jonah Morgan – Anime News Service Unless Otherwise Cited


ANS Exclusive Interview: 10 Questions To Yoshitaka Amano

  • 11th Jul 2004
  • News

By: Jonah Morgan

Few Japanese artists have captured the spirit and detail of the fantasy canvas like Yoshitaka Amano. Videogame RPG fans have been familiar with his character designs for the Final Fantasy Series for nearly 2 decades. His 1987 renditions for the characters of the original video animation of Hideyuki Kikuchi’s Vampire Hunter D helped made it one of the earliest and most popular anime video releases in the USA. We posed 10 questions Amano-sensei that are quite a wide range of topics.

Hello Mr. Amano, thank you for agreeing to our interview. Before I move into the main questions, I have one based on some breaking news in Japan. According to a Famitsu article published this week, Mr. Sakaguichi of Square announced he has founded his own independent development company, Mist Walker. He mentioned your name and manga artist Takehiko Inoue as possible future collaborators with the new studio. Can you comment on your position regarding Mist Walker at this time? Do you of other who are being considered to do work with the studio.

Mist Walker is Mr. Sakaguchi’s own project and I wasn’t involved at all. Mr. Sakaguchi has been a very good friend of mine and though we don’t have anything definite at the moment, I expect to work with him in many projects to come.

Many of your fans in America were excited to learn several years ago that you relocated to New York City in the USA. What first drew you to the city? What were your impressions of New York over your stay and are you currently still located there?

I wanted to challenge myself in a new environment where many talents are competing with each other. I also wanted to see and experience NYC by myself. You can have a lot of information about anything these days, but those information are filtered through other people’s eyes. I wanted to have a first hand experience.

Do you find the city (New York) to be very talent rich across the various media?

Definitely!

Have you done any recent work in anime / manga? Do you have anything coming up?

Right now, I’m working on three separate projects, one in NY, one in France, and one in Japan. Sorry, can’t tell you the details yet!

Your artwork has peeled back the layers of reality and fantasy. Away from art do you carry out any interests in reading topics and music types?

I see a lot of movies, not only Sci-Fi and fantasy, but in all category. Beside that, I love opera and ballet, so I go to see the stage whenever my schedule permits.

Can you tell us your personal view on the realm of the paranormal and supernatural?

Honestly speaking, I’m scared of paranormal and supernatural phenomenon. I can work on the theme in my imagination because I know it’s my imagination and not reality. If things happen in reality, gee, I’ll be terrified!

How about advanced ancient civilizations?

I don’t think it’ll be so different from what we have now. After all, our civilization did develop from ancient civilizations. I’m more interested in the future of this civilization we have now.

What are your thoughts on humanity’s destiny taken as a whole? Do you believe there is a hope we can break free of this almost genetic predisposition to killing one another and possibly evolve above that level or do you feel this flaw ultimately will doom our species.

The technology will never stop to advance, bio-chemical, computer, nano and space, you name it, but I don’t think humans will change much in its basic element. Suppose I live another 1000 yeas, and I’m not surprised to find myself not much different from what I am now. I’ll see and lean many thing, but it’ll still be the same damn me!

100 years from now, almost all of us living today will be gone. I just want to believe that trying our best today leads to a better future.

Can you tell us your current projects on the table in the realm of games or anime character design?

I’ve been working on a new game which will be released early next year. No details yet, sorry.

Finally, any words out there to your fans?

I’d like to thank you on this opportunity for all the supports I received from my fans throughout my carrier. Take care of your health, and I hope you’ll enjoy my works in the future too!


Anime News Service – May 16 Anime News

  • 20th May 2002
  • News

5-16-02—- She – The Ultimate Weapon Schedules

From Yukio-san:

She. The ultimate weipon.Web site.

http://www.saikano.net/

* CS broadcasting familiar July 2th(Tue.) night 7 o’clock – every week ONAIR
* Terrestrial broadcasting CBC July 3th(Wed.) midnight 1 o’clock 55 minute – every week ONAIR
* It will be on 8:00 -/Friday on familiar theater re-broadcast Wednesday at 1:00 – /Sunday night 7:30 at midnight in the morning.

5-16-02—- Sony Announces New AIBO

As part of the celebration to commemorate the third anniversary of the AIBO ([ERS-110]) Entertainment Robot, originally launched in May 1999, Sony today announced a new addition to LM series of robots, the AIBO [ERS-31L]. The new robot will carry a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $599 and will include a new AIBO-ware software package, AIBO Pal Special Edition. The new AIBO, which will come in caramel brown, will feature a new look similar to that of a bulldog or pug with a strong family resemblance to other members of the LM series [ERS-311/312]. Further, the new robot [ERS-31L] will include such advanced software enabled features as photo-taking capabilities (saves JPEG image onto Memory StickÔ media upon command), a 75-word vocabulary, interactive and expressive sensors, and more than 200 new behaviors. Beginning June 3 pre-orders will be accepted via the Internet at www.us.aibo.com or by calling the AIBO Adoption Hot Line: toll free 1-888-917-7669 (seven days a week, 24 hours a day). Additionally, starting June 10 AIBO [ERS-31L] can be purchased at Sony Style stores in San Francisco and New York, as well as the Sony Gallery in Chicago. As part of the third anniversary celebration, those purchasing the new robot during the month of June and while supplies last will receive a free AIBO Life AIBO-ware software package, which allows the owner to raise the robot from an infant to an adult, with their purchase.

“AIBO is a home entertainment platform that will evolve as Sony continues to develop and expand artificial intelligence technologies,” said Victor Matsuda, vice president of the Entertainment Robot America a division of Sony Electronics Inc. “The new robot provides even more entertainment with an attractive price that will excite a new audience of AIBO fans.”

AIBO Pal Special Edition AIBO-ware software gives robots in the LM series an energetic personality. The software also provides several new features, including: § Wake-Up Dance: AIBO wakes up with a special dance as a way of saying good morning; § Walk and Explore Snapshots: AIBO will eagerly walk around the room looking for things of interest and when it finds something fun it will snap a photo; § 200 plus new moves and dances for AIBO LM series line; and § New energetic responses and communication with its owner.

In celebration of AIBO’s third anniversary throughout the months of May and June, Sony will be taking the AIBO Orchestra on a nationwide road tour visiting select cities throughout the U.S., where robot fans and music lovers can experience nine AIBOs simultaneously performing Mozart’s Eine Kleine Nachtmusik. Scheduled cities· include: Boston May 18 and May 19 FAO Schwarz Chicago June 8 Sony Gallery New York June 22 Sony Style San Francisco June 29 Sony Style

5-16-02—- Recordable DVD Divide

The Daily Yomiuri reports on Microsoft Corp.’s recent announcement that it will support a rewritable DVD (DVD+RW) format causing a stir throughout the electronics industry. Though there are as many as five formats for recording data onto DVDs, makers of DVD equipment have formed two groups, those backing the DVD+RW (read/write) format and those backing the DVD-R, -RW and -RAM formats.

5-16-02—- Media Asia Scoops Up Golden Princess Library

According to Screen Daily reports Media Asia, in a long-term HK deal will see the company handle international rights to the 150-title Golden Princess library of martial arts films and dramas, including pictures by John Woo and Tsui Hark. Within Asia the catalogue is represented by Fortune Star.

“This is one of the few contemporary Hong Kong libraries that is guaranteed to have a strong appeal internationally,” said Jeffrey Chan, MA’s head of sales and distribution. Titles include John Woo’s Chow Yun-fat vehicle The Killer, Bullet In The Head, Tsui Hark’s Swordsman, and Johnny To’s Seven Years Itch. MA also picked up four of cult director Tsui Hark’s other pictures previously handled by independent distributors: Wicked City, Magic Crane, Spy Games and Shanghai Blues.

5-16-02—- DVD Dates For Tenchi Muyo GXP

Tenchi-web has just announced that “Tenchi Muyo! GXP” Vol.1(including #1-#4, both DVD and VHS) and the soundtrack CD will release on July 24th, 2002 in Japan! AND, if you pre-order it before June 16th, you can get the “Swimming suit edition of original illustration B2 poster” in the shop in Japan on July 24th. For more information, please visit Tenchi Web.(Japanese site)

Source: AIC Anime

5-16-02—- World Cup Anime Given Green Light

The Yomiuri reports the CG anime TV series based on the mascots of the 2002 Japan/South Korean soccer World Cup, the Spherics, will commence broadcast in Japan on 7 June 2002 after earlier problems securing a sponsor.

Source: Natsume Maya

5-16-02—- Huge Miike And Suzuki Cult J-Cinema Showing Coming To The Egyptian

Thanks to ML comrade Daniel for the following:

I got this off a flyer from the Egyptian Theater Mailing List. Takashi Miike’s Ichi the Killer will be shown at the Egyptian Saturday June 22 at 5 p.m., Happiness of the Katakuris will be shown Wednesday June 26 at 9:30 P.M., and Suzuki’s Pistol Opera will be shown June 21 at 7:00 p.m. and June 26 at the same time. Also showing as part of the Revenge of the Japanese Outlaw Masters series are Black Rose Mansion and If You Were Young by Kinji Fukasaku, Female Convict Scorpion Jailhouse 41, Black Tight Killers, Vengenace for Sale Dora Heita, and Japanese Devils!

5-16-02—- Police Chief Dorama On The Way

The Daily Yomiuri reports that the manga Keisatsu Shochou (Police Chief) by Takamochi Gen (who passed away in July 2000), will be turned into a live-action dorama to commence broadcast on 8 July 2002. Keisatsu