Friday, 29 April 2016

Zeta Gundam U.K. Release in August

Anime Limited has announced that it will release Yoshiyuki Tomino and Sunrise's Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam anime series as a two-part Blu-ray, with Part 1 released on August 29. It will carry the first 25 episodes of the series, and both the original Japanese version and the English dub will be included.
Anime Limited adds, "The first 1000 units of Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam will come with a Limited Edition Art Box to store both halves of the series. The box is not exclusive to any one retailer. The only the version of Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam Part 1 on day of release will be the version with the box. So no matter where you pre-order this you will receive the box."
The website includes this synopsis of the show:

In Zeta Gundam, we see the future world of the Universal Century through a dark mirror. Having defeated the Zeon menace, the Earth Federation has itself become cruel and oppressive. A new generation of Gundam mobile suits is created not to fight for peace, but to punish the enemies of the state, and yesterday's villains must become today's heroes in order to balance the scales of justice. When a young civilian named Kamille Bidan is caught up in the rebellion, he little suspects the price he will pay in the fight for freedom.

Pikachu Takes to the Sky for Newest Pokémon Center Opening

On the heels of the recently opened Pokémon Center in Kyoto, another Pokémon Center is set to open 2,000 feet in the sky.
Pokémon Center Skytree Town will open on July 6 in the Tokyo Soramachi shopping area inside the Tokyo Skytree. Like the Kyoto shop and other locations, the new Pokémon Center picked one representative Pokémon. Organizers picked the legendary flying-dragon type Rayquaza. Pikachu is already cosplaying as the mascot to show support. Both Pokémon will appear in the shop in a photo op area. Unique goods will go on sale, too.
Both the Tokyo Skytree and Pokémon Centers serve as popular tourist destinations. The Skytree has welcomed 140 million visitors since it opened in May 2012. It boasts a status of being the tallest tower in the world and the second tallest structure in the world.

Brittney Karbowski Joins Cross Ange English Dub Cast as Vivian

Sentai Filmworks announced with a video on Thursday that Brittney Karbowski will play VIvian in its dub of CROSS ANGE Rondo of Angel and Dragon. Karbowski is the first cast announcement for the series.
The first half of Cross Ange is slated for release on Blu-ray Disc and DVD on June 21.
Sentai Filmworks describes the story:
Betrayed by her brother. Stripped of her birthright. Declared an abomination. For the girl once known as Princess Angelise Ikaruga Misurugi, the nightmare has just begun. Because not having the ability to use magic makes her less than human in the eyes of the law, and now she's been exiled to certain death as a slave soldier in a war against draconic invaders! But the people and land that cast her out have made a lethal error. The girl now known as Ange is no longer an innocent Princess being lead to rape and slaughter. She's learned the hidden truth about the world she thought she knew. She's discovered that she's willing to kill in order to survive. And they've given her a weapon. The studio behind GUNDAM, ESCAFLOWNE, and COWBOY BEBOP unleashes a stunning new epic in animation as giant robots, a Princess, and dragons engage in the ultimate duel to the death in Cross Ange: Rondo of Angels and Dragons!
The Sunrise television anime premiered in Japan in October, and Crunchyroll streamed the series as it aired in Japan.


Candy Jar Books have released the cover art for the next book in their Lethbridge-Stewart series, The Showstoppers.

Lethbridge-Stewart: The Showstoppers (Credit: Candy-Jar Books)The Showstoppers
Written by Jonathan Cooper
Cover by Richard Young

‘Nuzzink in ze vorld can schtop me now!’

There’s a new TV show about to hit the airwaves, but Colonel Lethbridge-Stewart won’t be tuning in. With the future of the Fifth Operational Corps in doubt he’s got enough to worry about, but a plea from an old friend soon finds Lethbridge-Stewart and Anne Travers embroiled in a plot far more fantastical than anything on the small screen.

Can charismatic star Aubrey Mondegreene really be in two places at the same time? What lengths will ailing entertainment mogul Billy Lovac go to in order to reach his audience? And is luckless journalist Harold Chorley really so desperate that he’ll buy into a story about Nazi conspiracies from a tramp wearing a tin foil hat?

There’s something very rotten at the heart of weekend television, and it isn’t all due to shoddy scripts and bad special effects.

Shaun Russell, head of publishing at Candy Jar Books, said:
Richard is well-known for his photo realistic work. Watching him painstakingly create his artwork with thousands of dots is incredibly impressive. His design for The Showstoppers really evokes the early Target covers.
Richard Young said:
Doctor Who has been a big part of my life since I was a kid. The classic series is extremely close to my heart and I always wanted to draw a cover for the Target books... but they didn't like my style when I was ten. So to have the chance to contribute a cover for a book featuring one of the most iconic characters of Doctor Who is not only a huge honour but the realisation of a thirty-four-year old dream.

I had fun flexing my Photoshop muscles for the (free book) The Black Eggs of Khufu cover, but I jumped at the chance to return to my roots and work on a hand drawn cover, echoing the wonderfully surreal Kubrick movie.
The movie in question is Dr Strangelove Or: How to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb, with the book echoing the same world; writer Jonathan Cooper commented:
I’ve always been a fan of Dr Strangelove and Doctor Who, so when Candy Jar Books asked me to meld the two together into a Lethbridge-Stewart novel, I could not resist. Who would?
The book also features an introduction by David George, son of Peter George, focusing on the conspiracy theories that tie Dr Strangelove to the Kennedy assassination.

The Showstoppers is the second release for 2016, following on from Moon Blink by Sadie Miller.

To help pave the way for the new series of books, Beast of Fang Rock will be available for free on Kindle for three days from Saturday 30th April. Andy Frankham-Allen, range editor of the Lethbridge-Stewart novels, said:
Both Moon Blink and The Showstoppers are strong Anne Travers stories, and since Beast of Fang Rock really introduced her to the range, we thought it would be nice to offer up this book as a free chance for the uninitiated to catch up on her back story.
The usual discounted pre-order bundles will be on offer from Candy Jar, with a new subscription deal for those wishing to get six books for the price of five.

Lethbridge-Stewart: The Showstoppers by Jonathan Cooper is due to be released soon. It can now be pre-ordered (individually, or as part of a bundle/subscription) from Candy Jar Books.

DW Target exhibition

An exhibition showcasing original cover artwork from the Target range of Doctor Who novels has opened in London.

The display, at the Cartoon Museum in Bloomsbury features 30 pieces of art, which were commissioned for the cover illustrations of Doctor Who novelisations, published during the 1970's and 1980's under the Target imprint

it includes ten covers by Chris Achilleos from The Daleks through to Revenge of the Cybermen, five covers by Andrew Skilleter from Destiny of the Daleksthrough to The Mark of the Rani and other classic and well-loved original cover artwork such by Roy Knipe, Jeff Cummins, and David McAlister.

The launch was attended by several of the artists featured as well as Doctor Who show runner Steven Moffat and the current doctor, Peter Capaldi, no mean artist himself.

The exhibition was the brainchild of Doctor Who brand manager Edward Russell, who told Doctor Who News he was delighted by the response to the display of the artwork.

The exhibition runs until Sunday 15th May.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Dub Actor Robert Axelrod at London Anime and Gaming Con

The dub actor Robert Axelrod (pictured) will attend the next London Anime and Gaming Con event, which will run for three days from Friday July 1 to Sunday July 3. Axelrod's credits include Armodillomon in Digimon Adventures 02 and Rico in Robotech; he also voiced Lord Zedd in Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers.
The event will take place at the Rocket Complex near Holloway Road tube station

Kingdom Hearts Concert in London March 2017

A live concert featuring music from the Square Enix/Disney game series Kingdom Hearts will come to London's Central Hall Westminster in 2017 as part of its world tour, with performances on March 24 and 25.
According to the website, pre-sales and exclusive VIP tickets will be sold at from April 30 (2016), and tickets will be available from ticketmaster from May 14.

Funimation Offers English Broadcast Dub for My Hero Academia Anime (Updated

North American anime distributor Funimation confirmed on Wednesday that it will provide an English broadcast dub for the My Hero Academia anime. Funimation revealed the main dub cast for the anime on its Dubbletalk program on Wednesday.

Update: The broadcast dub will premiere on May 4.
The anime premiered on the MBS /TBS channel network's "Nichigo" timeslot on April 3, and airs every Sunday at 5:00 p.m. Funimation is streaming the series in Japanese with English subtitles in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Ireland as it airs in Japan.
Viz Media is publishing the manga, and it describes the story:

What would the world be like if 80 percent of the population manifested superpowers called "Quirks" at age four? Heroes and villains would be battling it out everywhere! Being a hero would mean learning to use your power, but where would you go to study? The Hero Academy of course! But what would you do if you were one of the 20 percent who were born Quirkless? Middle school student Izuku Midoriya wants to be a hero more than anything, but he hasn't got an ounce of power in him. With no chance of ever getting into the prestigious U.A. High School for budding heroes, his life is looking more and more like a dead end. Then an encounter with All Might, the greatest hero of them all, gives him a chance to change his destiny...
The anime's Japanese cast stars:

Kenji Nagasaki (Gundam Build Fighters, Classroom Crisis, No. 6) is directing the anime at the studio BONES (Blood Blockade Battlefront, Concrete Revolutio, Fullmetal Alchemist). Yousuke Kuroda (Gundam Build Fighters, Honey and Clover, Trigun) is overseeing the series' scripts. The rock band Porno Graffiti performed the opening theme song, and the rock band Brian the Sun performed the ending theme song as their major label debut.

Anime Limited Acquires Lucky Star for Blu-ray

Limited Collector's Edition Blu-ray on September 5

Anime Limited has announced that it will be releasing the 2007 Kyoto Animation comedy series Lucky Star.

According to Anime Limited, "We'll be releasing the series as a Limited Collector's Edition Blu-ray set on 5th September. We're also looking to include something special for our release, but until we have an all-clear on it we're not going to talk about it just yet

Anime Limited Acquires Empire of Corpses and Harmony

Anime Limited has announced that it will be releasing the feature films Empire of Corpses (pictured) and Harmony. Both are part of the "Project Itoh" project, a series of films adapted from novels by the late Satoshi Itoh.
Empire of Corpses will be released on July 11. According to Anime Limited, "We will be doing something special for this as it will be presented in steelbox packaging, that will be limited to 1000 units across all retailers. The set will include the film on both Blu-ray and DVD and there also will be a booklet included too."
Harmony is "tentatively scheduled to be in Q4 but we'll be confirming the date soon." As with Empire of Corpses, there will be a steelbox combi edition, limited to 1000 units, and including a booklet.
Both films will be screened during the "Anime Weekend" from June 3 to 5.

DWM 499

The latest edition of Doctor Who Magazine has been published today, and as a new exhibition on Target books opens at the Cartoon Museum in London takes look back at the history of Doctor Who book cover art. The first regular artist on the range, Chris Achilleos, tells the magazine on how he established a new visual style for Doctor Who:
I didn’t need direction – I knew how to do a cover. I was always very aware that a book cover needs to be attractive – almost interactive, in a way – so that you’re drawn to pick it up in a shop. I still think they work as good punchy covers.
Target book fan and modern-day Doctor Who writer Mark Gatiss has much affection for the artwork:
The Three Doctors was my first and perhaps still my favourite. The incredibly evocative orange and green luridness of Omega’s deadly fingers, the Doctors themselves in grave monochrome. I still get a Proustian rush from seeing these images.

Also inside the issue:

  • PRODUCTION NOTES: Doctor Who’s executive producer Brian Minchin tells DWM about the operation to reveal the identity of the Doctor's new companion...
  • WHO WANTS TO LIVE FOREVER? DWM investigates what it is to be immortal in the Doctor Who universe.
  • NIGHT TO REMEMBER: Ahead of a very special Fact of Fiction next issue on The Day of the Doctor, DWM looks back at the most unexpected Doctor Who story of all time
  • GATEWAY TO THE UNIVERSE: The Fourth Doctor, Romana, Adric and K9 try to find a way out of E-Space in this month’s Fact of Fiction on 1981's Warriors' Gate...
  • BACK IN THE SISTERHOOD: We ask Clare Higgins, High Priestess of the Sisterhood of Karn, if Ohila could be the Doctor’s mother?
  • THE WITCH IS FAMILIAR... in the third part of our brand-new comic strip adventure, Witch Hunt, written by Jacqueline Rayner and illustrated by Martin Geraghty.
  • DRESS FOR THE OCCASION: Jacqueline Rayner talks about the challenges of dressing her boys up as the Doctor, in her column, Relative Dimensions.
  • DOCTOR, I MARRIED HIM! An increasing number of couple are incorporating Doctor Who into the most important day of their lives. But why? DWM investigates...
  • FISHY BUSINESS: There’s something fishy going on under Venice, as the Time Team watch The Vampires of Venice...
  • COMING SOON: DWM previews all the latest Doctor Who CD and book releases.
  • DREAM WORLD: Russell T Davies returns to BBC Wales with his production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream...
PLUS! All the latest official news, reviews, competitions and The DWM Crossword

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Anime Limited to Distribute Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky

Anime Limited has announced that it will distribute the Blu-ray of Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky (Collector's Edition, Export Edition). This is the movie-format version of Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt (based on the manga by Yasuo Ohtakagi), with additional scenes.
According to the announcement, "This pre-order scheme in conjunction with Bandai Visual allows UK fans to pre-order this upcoming release knowing that it will be sent from our offices here in the UK (once stock arrives – expected July 2016.) Though please note this is a Japanese product. The main feature itself has both English and Japanese language audio and will have English subtitles, but any additional features on the disc itself and/or the physical items included in the package itself will be in Japanese only... This is a Japanese product we're making available for UK fans to pre-order, this is not an Anime Limited produced release. "
The announcement continues, "We (Anime Limited) are now taking pre-orders for Mobile Suit Gundam Thunderbolt: December Sky for the UK, Ireland and Scandinavian customers through our web shop. The deadline to pre-order this by is 11:59pm on Sunday 22nd May 2016.
The price is £74.99, "inclusive of delivery via the UPS courier service and UK & Ireland Customs Clearance. All UK & Ireland pre-orders for this will only be fulfilled via the courier service UPS and a signature will be required on delivery. (Please select the free delivery method of checkout – you will not be charged additional cost for this.) We can only fulfil orders of this product to UK, Ireland and Scandinavian countries. Any order placed from other countries will be cancelled. Any orders for outside of the UK & Ireland for this product placed at our web shop will be only fulfilled by the UPS courier service. Please note there will be an additional international shipping surcharge. The cost of this will be added during the checkout process."
The synopsis is as follows:

It is Universal Century 0079, at the end of the One Year War between the Earth Federation and the Principality of Zeon. The space colonies of Side 4, or Moore, were previously destroyed by a Zeon attack, and many colonists lost their lives. Side 4 became a shoal zone filled with the wreckage of destroyed colonies and warships, lit by constant flashes of lightning due to collisions between electrified debris. It soon came to be known as the “Thunderbolt Sector.” The Moore Brotherhood, an Earth Federation Forces unit made up of surviving citizens from Moore, set out to exterminate the Zeon forces in the Thunderbolt Sector in order to reclaim their homeland. To halt the Federation advance, the Zeon forces deployed their own Living Dead Division, which was established to collect combat data on soldiers with prosthetic limbs.
Io Fleming, though part of the Moore Brotherhood, hates being tied down by his homeland and family history. Daryl Lorenz, having lost his legs in earlier battles, is now an ace sniper of the Living Dead Division. When they confront each other on the battlefield, they will reach a mutual realization. These two are destined to kill each other.

The Hollywood Reporter: Live-Action Battle Angel Alita Film Tests 3 Actresses for Lead Role

Entertainment news source The Hollywood Reporter revealed on Tuesday that the staff for the planned live-action film adaptation of Yukito Kishiro's Battle Angel Alita (GUNNM) manga has narrowed down the choice of lead actress for the film to Maika Monroe (It Follows, Independence Day: Resurgence), Rosa Salazar (Maze Runner: The Scorch Trials), and Zendaya (K.C. Undercover, Spider-Man: Homecoming). Zendaya's Shake It Up co-star Bella Thorne also tested for the role. A decision is expected in the coming weeks.
The Hollywood Reporter describes the film:

Alita: Battle Angel tells of a female cyborg that is discovered in a trash yard by a scientist. With no memory of her previous life except her deadly martial arts training, the woman becomes a bounty hunter, tracking down criminals. The action-adventure story is meant to serve as a backdrop to themes of self-discovery and the search for love.
The Hollywood Reporter's article notes that the movie has not yet been officially greenlit, as 20th Century Fox is negotiating the project's budget down from the $175-$200 million range.
Robert Rodriguez (El Mariachi, Once Upon a Time in Mexico, Sin City, Spy Kids) is in negotiations to direct the film. James Cameron and Jon Landau are producing the project. The film is currently titled Alita: Battle Angel.
Cameron reaffirmed in 2014 that he will not work on Battle Angel Alita until he has finished directing the sequels to his Avatar film, which are in pre-production.
Shutter Island's Laeta Kalogridis has penned a script for the project.
Kishiro's manga ran in Shueisha's Business Jump magazine from 1990 to 1995, followed by the 1995-1996 follow-up Ashen Victor and the single-volume GUNNM: Other Stories. The story continued in 2001 with the partial retelling Battle Angel Alita: Last Order, which moved to Kodansha's Evening magazine as the result of an issue between Kishiro and Shueisha's Ultra Jump magazine. The newest manga, Gunnm: Kasei Senki (Battle Angel Alita: The Martian War Chronicles), launched in Kodansha's Evening magazine in 2014.

A Certain Magical Index Producer: 3rd Anime Season Is 'Plausible'

Producer, Straight Edge founder, and former Dengeki Bunko Editor-in-Chief Kazuma Miki posted on his official Twitter account on Monday regarding the possibility of a third season of the A Certain Magical Index anime. He writes:

"Please understand that this is an unofficial statement. I am always receiving everyone's passionate opinions on this. Index anime [season 3] is plausible, so please wait!!"
A Certain Magical Index adapts Kazuma Kamachi's light novel series of the same name. The first television anime series premiered in 2008, and was followed by a second season in 2010, and the A Certain Magical Index: The Miracle of Endymion anime film in 2013. Motoi Fuyukawa's spinoff manga series A Certain Scientific Railgun also received a television anime series in 2009, and a second season titled A Certain Scientific Railgun S in 2013. Miki is credited as producer in all of the above anime.
Miki recently left his position as Editor-in-Chief of Kadokawa's Dengeki Bunko on March 31 to start a new company called Straight Edge alongside Kazutomo Suzuki, executive manager at Kadokawa's ASCII Media Works. The new company's focus will be on managing talent and producing content such as publications and animation. The new company has not announced plans to print its own titles. Among other writers, Straight Edge has a contract with A Certain Magical Index author Kazuma Kamachi.
Yen Press is publishing the A Certain Magical Index light novels and manga adaptation in North America, while Seven Seas Entertainment is publishing the A Certain Scientific Railgun and A Certain Scientific Accelerator spinoff manga. Funimation released the first season of A Certain Magical Index on DVD in 2013, and on DVD and Blu-ray Disc in 2014. Funimation has released all of the A Certain Magical Index and A Certain Scientific Railgun anime in North America.

DW Hugo award

Doctor Who: Heaven Sent, has been nominated for a 2016 Hugo Award.

The episode, shown last year, written by Steven Moffat and directed by Rachel Talalay , starred Peter Capaldi in an highly aclaimed, almost single handed, performance.

Doctor Who is competing against Universal's Grimm, Marvel Television's Jessica Jones, DHX Media's My Little Pony and Kripke Enterprises's Supernatural to win the prestigious award for Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form).

Six Doctor Who episodes have previously won a Hugo Award, including The Doctor's Wife, The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang and The Waters of Mars. Last year the episode Listen was nominated, but lost out in the final voting.

The winners of the 2016 Hugo will be announced on Saturday, August 20, at the MidAmeriCon II Hugo Awards Ceremony held in Kansas City, Missouri.
Best Dramatic Presentation (Short Form): Nominations
  • Doctor Who: “Heaven Sent” written by Steven Moffat, directed by Rachel Talalay (BBC Television)
  • Grimm: “Headache” written by Jim Kouf and David Greenwalt, directed by Jim Kouf(Universal Television; GK Productions; Hazy Mills Productions; Open 4 Business Productions; NBCUniversal Television Distribution)
  • Jessica Jones: “AKA Smile” written by Scott Reynolds, Melissa Rosenberg, and Jamie King, directed by Michael Rymer (Marvel Television; ABC Studios; Tall Girls Productions;Netflix)
  • My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: “The Cutie Map” Parts 1 and 2 written by Scott Sonneborn, M.A. Larson, and Meghan McCarthy, directed by Jayson Thiessen and Jim Miller (DHX Media/Vancouver; Hasbro Studios)
  • Supernatural: “Just My Imagination” written by Jenny Klein, directed by Richard Speight Jr. (Kripke Enterprises; Wonderland Sound and Vision; Warner Bros. Television)

DWA #14

Doctor Who Adventures issue 14 is released this week

In the magazine
  • The Doctor ends up playing detective in a country house high up in the clouds. The trouble is, he’s being chased by an angry group of gorillas and the country house is about to come crashing out of the sky and down to earth! You’ll go ape with this latest offering from Kieron Moore, Russ Leach and John Burns!
  • Missy is looking for a sidekick/slave/dogsbody! Have you got what it takes to serve the craziest Time Lord in history?
  • Unleash your inner fan with some cool Doctor badges!
  • This month you get to access UNIT’s archive on the one and only River Song!
  • Strax has just taken a vacation on Gallifrey and he’s eager to show you his latest holiday snaps!
  • The Paternoster Gang investigate the Dangerous Dilemma of the Dream Doorway, in a chilling story brought to you by Rik Hoskin!
Doctor Who Adventures #14 4 comes with a free make a monster kit and is on sale 28th April 2016, price £3.99

Doctor Who Adventures issue 14 Doctor Who Adventures issue 14

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

New Cardcaptor Sakura Manga Is Sequel Launching in June

The June issue of Kodansha's Nakayoshi magazine is announcing on Saturday that the members of the creative team CLAMP are launching the new Cardcaptor Sakura sequel manga series in the magazine's July issue on June 3. The manga will take place after titular character Sakura graduates from Tomoeda Elementary School, in her first year of junior high school. Sakura sees a mysterious dream, and an incident takes place.
The magazine notes that the manga series has sold over 12 million copies.
The magazine announced last month that CLAMP will publish a new manga in the franchise.
This year marks the 20th anniversary of the original manga. NHK's BS Premium began re-running the Clow Card arc of the Cardcaptor Sakura anime on April 6. A book compiling previously published illustrations shipped on March 24. Six Animate Cafés in Japan began hosting a Cardcaptor Sakura theme starting on April 1.
The original Cardcaptor Sakura magical girl manga series ran in Nakayoshi from May 1996 to June 2000, and Kodansha published 12 volumes of the manga from November 1996 to July 2000. Tokyopop released the series in English in two editions, and Dark Horse Comics released the series in omnibus format.
An anime series produced by Madhouse aired in Japan from April 1998 to March 2000. A film titled Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie premiered in Japan in 1999, and Cardcaptor Sakura: The Sealed Card followed in 2000.
NIS America licensed the television anime in 2014 and re-released it in a Blu-ray Premium Edition and DVD Standard Edition in North America.
NIS America describes the story:
Ten-year-old Sakura lives a pretty normal life with her older brother, Toya, and widowed father, Fujitaka. At least she did, until the day she returned home from school to discover a glowing book in her father's study. After opening the book and releasing the cards within, Sakura is tasked with collecting each of these magical cards, while trying to live the life of a normal fourth grader. In the monumental task of collecting all the cards, Sakura must rely on her friends and family, and decide what she finds most important in life.
Discotek licensed Cardcaptor Sakura: The Movie, which was previously owned by Geneon, in 2013 and released it on home video the following year. Geneon released Cardcaptor Sakura: The Sealed Card on DVD in 2003 with a new dub cast.

June Anime Screenings at BFI Southbank

The BFI Southbank in London has announced the line-up for a three-day season of anime films from Friday June 3 to Sunday June 5.
The screenings include Harmony (pictured right, being screened together with a live Q&A with director Michael Arias, who also directed Tekkon Kinkreet), as well as Empire of Corpses, Ghost In The Shell: The New Movie, Psycho-Pass The Movie, Mamoru Hosoda's The Boy and The Beast and Mamoru Oshii's Garm Wars The Last Druid. (In addition to the line-up at the above link, there will also be a screening of Ghibli's When Marnie Was There on Sunday.)
Tickets will become available to the general public on Tuesday May 10 (at 11.30 a.m.). Members of the BFI will be able to book a week earlier on Tuesday May 3 (at 11.30 a.m.).
Directions to the BFI Southbank, near to Waterloo station and the BFI IMAX cinema, are here
Most of the screenings are in NFT1, the main theatre, although the two final screenings are in NFT3. The full list of anime screenings and events follows, with links to the relevant pages on the BFI Southbank site.
Friday June 3
Harmony, plus Q&A with director Michael Arias (details) 6 pm. in NFT1.
"Medical advances have brought the world to a safe but oppressive ‘utopian’ state. The world balance finds itself threatened when a sudden crisis erupts. Directors Arias (Animatrix, Tekkon Kinkreet) and Nakamura (A Tree of Palme) team up to bring Satoshi Ito's sci-fi novel to the big screen – one of three Project Itoh works animated in 2015."
Empire of Corpses (details), 8.50 pm. in NFT1.
"Our second Project Ito adaptation in this anime weekend is set in a parallel 19th-century Europe where human corpses have been re-animated to provide military muscle and slave labour. In London, John Watson is set upon discovering the missing component – the soul – and restoring humanity to these creatures."
Saturday June 4
The Boy and The Beast (details), 3.30 pm. in NFT1.
'When Ren runs away he finds a secret entrance to a town of beasts and becomes apprentice to Kumatetsu, a self-centred creature who wants to become the new Beast Lord. This unlikely duo struggle at first, but when Ren leaves, Kumatetsu finds himself in danger and needs his young friend's help. Hosoda's follow up to Wolf Children proves he's an anime force to be reckoned with.'
Ghost in the Shell (1995 film) (details), 6.15 pm. in NFT1.
"We celebrate the 25th birthday of distributor Manga Entertainment with a screening of this anime classic, itself 21-years-old. Beautifully animated and disturbingly prophetic, Ghost in the Shell is a futuristic tale centring on Public Security Section 9's hunt for supreme hacker The Puppet Master."
Ghost In The Shell: The New Movie (details), 8.45 in NFT1.
"In this next edition of the popular franchise, it's 2029 and Major Motoko Kusanagi returns with Public Security Section 9 to investigate a group of cyborg ex-soldiers who have taken a number of hostages.!
Sunday June 5
When Marnie Was There (details), 12.40 p.m. in NFT 1. This is an English-dubbed screening that's not technically part of the Anime Weekend, but is designated as a 'BFI Families' screening.
"Anna is a sickly girl who's sent to live with relatives near the seaside, where she meets Marnie. Marnie claims to live in the mansion across the marsh, which at times seems dilapidated and at other times not... This Oscar®-nominated film from Studio Ghibli is an exquisitely hand-drawn treat."
Garm Wars: The Last Druid (details), 5.20 pm. in NFT3. Original version, in English.
"A clone war has overtaken the world with three tribes battling for air, land and technology. When one clone finds herself lost and on the run, she falls in with an unlikely group. This visually stunning live-action tale has a cyberpunk aesthetic and is the first English language outing for Ghost in the Shell director Mamoru Oshii.
Psycho-Pass The Movie (details), 8 pm. in NFT3.
'Inspector Tsunemori has an attempted terrorist attack to deal with and what's more – her chief suspect is her former partner, who now lives within a dictatorship zone with some very dangerous people. This anime action-adventure will please fans of the TV franchise but is also self-contained

NIS America Will No Longer Publish Atlus Games in Europe

Upcoming Odin Sphere Leifthrasir release will not be affected

NIS America managing director Takuro Yamashita revealed in an interview with British video game news website MCV on Monday that NIS America will no longer publish Atlus games in Europe. According to Yamashita, NIS America terminated its relationship with Atlus "around ten days ago."
Atlus will also no longer distribute NIS America titles in America.
Yamashita explained the decision:
Atlus became very picky about selecting the European publishing partner after it was bought by Sega. It always cherry picked its EU publishing partner based on who offered the highest minimum guarantee on a title by title basis. I noticed that it was very difficult for NIS America to establish an equal-partnership with Atlus. Atlus and its European games have contributed a lot to the expansion of NIS America in Europe. I would like to express my greatest appreciation to them for that.
Sega of America announced its acquisition of Atlus USA on March 31.
Atlus games that NIS America has released in Europe include Persona 4 Golden, Persona Q, and Etrian Odyssey Untold 2: The Fafnir Knight. NIS America is slated to release Odin Sphere Leifthrasir in Europe this summer; Atlus USA PR manager John Hardin confirmed over Twitter that this release will not be affected.

I Am a Hero, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Zutto Mae Kara Suki Deshita, Sound! Euphonium Films Open; Detective Conan Still Tops Box Office

Detective Conan: Junkoku no Nightmare (Detective Conan: The Darkest Nightmare), the 20th Detective Conan (Case Closed) anime film, topped the Japanese box office chart again in its second weekend. The film sold 522,023 tickets over the weekend for 679,206,300 yen (about US$6.1 million), bringing the film's box office total to more than 2.5 billion yen.
The film opened on 348 screens on April 16 and earned the highest opening weekend gross in the franchise's history. The previous film, Detective Conan: Sunflowers of Inferno, eventually grossed a total of over 4.4 billion yen (about US$40.33 million), the highest so far in the franchise's history, but Detective Conan: The Darkest Nightmare is projected to eventually earn over 5 billion yen (about US$45.83 million).
Eiga Crayon Shin-chan Bakusui! Yumemi World Dai Totsugeki (Crayon Shin-chan the Movie Fast Asleep! The Large Attack on the Dreaming World), the 24th Crayon Shin-chan film, fell from #2 to #3 in its second weekend after Disney's Zootopia opened at #2.
The live-action film of Kengo Hanazawa's best-selling zombie manga I am a Hero opened on 284 screens this week at #4. The film sold 159,964 tickets over the weekend and earned 225,688,700 yen (about US$2 million).
Yu-Gi-Oh!: The Dark Side of Dimensions, the anime film that celebrates the 20th anniversary of Kazuki Takahashi's Yu-Gi-Oh! manga, opened on Saturday on 137 screens and ranked #6. The film sold 92,396 tickets over the weekend and earned 133,010,600 yen (about US$1.2 million).
Ansatsu Kyōshitsu: Sotsugyō-hen (Assassination Classroom: Graduation), the second live-action film based on Yusei Matsui's Assassination Classroom manga, dropped from #3 to #7 in its fifth weekend. The film has earned more than 3 billion yen (about US$27.53 million), surpassing the first film's box office takings of 2.77 billion yen (about US$25.6 million), as well as exceeding its projected gross of 2.9 billion yen (about US$26.9 million).
Zutto Mae Kara Suki Deshita: Kokuhaku Jikkō Iinkai (I've Always Liked You: Confession Executive Committee), the anime film of HoneyWorks' Vocaloid song project "Kokuhaku Jikkō Iinkai ~Renai Series~," opened on Saturday on 81 screens and ranked #8. The film sold 50,528 tickets for 70,507,400 yen (about US$630,000).
Chihayafuru: Kami no Ku, the first of two planned live-action films of Yuki Suetsugu's Chihayafuru manga, fell from #6 to #9 in its 6th weekend.
Eiga Doraemon Shin Nobita no Nihon Tanjō (Doraemon the Movie: Nobita and the Birth of Japan 2016), the 36th anime film in the Doraemon franchise, fell from #4 to #10 rank in its eighth weekend.
The Gekijō-ban Hibike! Euphonium: Kitauji Kōkō Suisōraku-Bu e Yōkoso (Sound! Euphonium the Movie: Welcome to the Kitauji High School Concert Band) anime film opened on Saturday on 38 screens and ranked #11 in the box office.

Monday, 25 April 2016

Tokyo Government Offers Support for Original Anime Production to Promote Overseas Business Development

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government Bureau of Industrial and Labor Affairs announced on Friday that it is accepting applications for original anime productions to promote overseas business development.
The campaign will offer selected winners the opportunity to conduct pitches, proposals, and business discussions with overseas producers. Additionally, Bureau of Industrial and Labor Affairs will provide advice and lessons on how to conduct such proposals and on how to make a required PR video.
Applications are open to all registered small and medium businesses in the Tokyo Metropolitan area, as well as registered sole proprietorships in the same region. The submitted plan must be for an original work, but does not require actual footage upon submission. Chosen applicants will be awarded 300,000 yen (about US$2,695), and will be required to produce a one-minute pilot PR video after being chosen.
The campaign will take applications from April 28 until May 26. All applicants are required to attend at least one of six project briefings. The briefings will occur on April 28, May 9, and May 11, with two briefings to be held each

Terror in Resonance and Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Blade Works Released Monday

On Monday April 25, Anime Limited will release the series Terror in Resonance both as a Blu-ray/DVD Ultimate Edition and also as a standard DVD. The Ultimate Edition comes with a 120-page hardback (containing artwork, interviews and production drawings), and also a slipcase.
Funimation has described the story:

Legendary director Shinichiro Watanabe and famed composer Yoko Kanno are back with a suspense-filled intellectual thriller! Tokyo has been hit by a shocking terrorist attack, and the only hint to the identity of the culprit is a bizarre video uploaded to the internet. The police, baffled by this cryptic clue, are powerless to stop the paranoia spreading across the population.
While the world searches for a criminal mastermind to blame for this tragedy, two mysterious children – children who shouldn't even exist – masterfully carry out their heinous plan. Cursed to walk through this world with the names Nine and Twelve, the two combine to form “Sphinx,” a clandestine entity determine to wake the people from their slumber – and pull the trigger on this world.
MVM will release Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works part 1, both as a Collector's Edition Blu-ray and a standard DVD. The Collector's Edition comes with a Season 1 Key Art poster, four Seal Command stickers, and a 24-page booklet containing concept art, storyboards and breakdowns.
From the Anime-On-Line site:

The Holy Grail War has begun. An ancient ritual, seven masters and their seven holy spirits fight to the death. It's said the winner who possesses the Holy Grail is granted any wish they desire. Rin Tohsaka has been training to become a master her whole life, just like her father. Rin and her servant Archer form an unlikely bond with Emiya Shirou who finds himself becoming the master of Saber, one of the most powerful servants in the Holy Grail War. Working together they have to survive knowing only one master can remain. Saber, Lancer, Archer, Rider, Caster, Assassin and Berserker. Who of these seven heroic spirits will earn the mythical Holy Grail and what will they wish for?
Finally, Anime Limited is releasing the second part of its standard edition of Kill la Kill on Blu-ray and DVD, carrying parts 10 to 19 of the series.

Hana & Alice Glasgow Screening and Q&A Thursday

Shunji Iwai's feature film Hana to Alice Satsujin Jiken (The Case of Hana & Alice) will have a screening at the Glasgow Film Theatre on Thursday April 28 at 6 p.m. The screening will be followed by a live Q&A with the director. Tickets can be booked at the above link.
The Case of Hana & Alice is an animated prequel to his live-action 2004 coming-of-age film Hana & Alice. The original film showed the friendship between two high school girls; the anime film explains how they first met.
The animated film is summarised on the website as follows:

Alice is off to a fresh start. Having just settled down with her recently divorced mother, she's set to begin school at a new college. Upon arrival, she quickly falls victim to bullying, but after running into Fuko, an old ballet partner, she finds solace in returning to dance. It is during such a dancing session that she overhears about the enigmatic affair of the Ishinomori High murder. When Alice discovers that her next-door neighbour Hana, who's been holed up inside her apartment for months, holds the missing pieces to an unsolved murder, she decides to pay her a visit.
Iwai directed The Case of Hana & Alice, wrote the screenplay and composed the soundtrack. The Japanese-language trailer is below.

Japanese Music Industry Sees 1st Rise in 3 Years

The Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ) released its "The Recording Industry in Japan 2016" report for the year 2015 on April 8.

Audio Sales

According to the report, the combined revenue acquired through sales of audio records (CD/analogue disc) and music videos (DVD/Blu-ray Disc) increased by 1% in 2015 compared to the previous year for a total of 301.5 billion yen (about US$2.697 billion). This is the first time the industry has had a positive gain in sales in three years.
Paid digital music distribution rose in sales by 8% compared to 2014, with a total revenue of 47.1 billion yen (US$421.3 million). According the RIAJ, the reason for the increase is because of paid music streaming services, which dominated one-fourth of all of the digital sales. The sales of physical single CDs dropped by 8% for a total of 19 billion yen (US$169.9 million), but the sale of physical album CDs rose by 10% for a total of 9.2 billion yen (US$82.3 million).
13,813 combined single CDs and albums were released in 2015; a record high. In comparison, 10,533 single CDs and albums were released in 2014.

Anime Sales

2015 also saw the release of 550 anime-related CD singles and 472 anime-related albums for a total of 1,022 music releases for the anime industry. This is the largest number of anime-related music releases ever released in a single year. In comparison, 828 releases were made in 2014, while 832 were made in 2013.


Male idol band Arashi won the Artist of the Year award for Japanese artist, while The Beatles won for Western artist. This is the third time Arashi has won the award. Tohoshinki (One Piece theme song artists) won Best Asian Artist.
Arashi's album Japonism also won the Album Award for 2015 in the Japan artist category, and also ranked on top in the industry's Best 5 Album rankings for Japanese artists. Dreams Come True's (One Piece: Episode of Chopper - The Miracle Winter Cherry Blossom) album DREAMS COME TRUE THE BEST! Watashi no Dorikamu also ranked at #5 in the same category.
The Love Live! School idol project album μ's Best Album Best Live! Collection II album was deemed Animation Album of the Year.
In the singles category, AKB48 took the Single of the Year award with their "Boku-tachi wa Tatakawanai" (We Will Not Fight) release. All singles in the Best 5 Singles category for 2015 were AKB48 releases, except number five, which belonged to their rival unit Nogizaka46. Kana Nishino's (Soul Eater) song "Torisetsu" was awarded as Song of the Year by Download, while Leo Ieiri's (Dragon Ball Kai) "Kimi ga Kureta Natsu" (The Summer You Gave Me) song ranked at number one in the "Best 5 Song by Download" category.
The RIAJ does release the yearly report in English, but it has not yet updated with the 2016 report

Funimation Reveals Gonna be the Twin-Tail!! Anime's Dub Cast

Funimation announced the English dub cast for the Gonna be the Twin-Tail!! television anime at the Anime Detour convention on Friday.
The cast, under ADR director Jerry Jewell, ADR engineer William Dewell, and script writer Samuel Wooley, includes:

Funimation describes the anime's story:

Soji Mitsuka is an ordinary high schooler with an extraordinary obsession. Twin tails are his fire, his air, his will to live! But when a mysterious woman from another world enlists his help to fight hideous monsters with various moe fetishes, Soji much transform into a powerful pigtailed…girl? With the help of his childhood friend, the class president, and his endless devotion to pigtails, Soji and his crew form a twin-tailed threesome to take on the monsters who feed on the “attribute power” of humans. But Soji's new pigtailed powers come with a price; his surging popularity as the new heroin in town makes the twin-tailed trend explode, giving the monsters ample attribute powers to feed upon!
Funimation began streaming a promotional video for the complete series in March:
The anime premiered in October 2014, and Funimation streamed the series as it aired in Japan. Hulu and Crunchyroll also streamed the anime.
Hiroyuki Kanbe (Oreimo) directed the series, and Naruhisa Arakawa (Outbreak Company, MAOYU, Spice & Wolf) was in charge of series composition. The anime's Japanese cast includes Nobunaga Shimazaki (Free!, Pupa) as protagonist Sōji Mitsuka, Maaya Uchida (Pretty Rhythm Rainbow Live, Noragami) as heroine Thouars, Chinatsu Akasaki (Tari Tari, Love Lab) as Erina Shindō, M.A.O (Futsū no Joshikōsei ga Locodol Yattemita, Z/X Ignition) as Mikoto Sakuragawa, and Yōko Hikasa (K-ON!, Majestic Prince) as Isna.

DW copanion news

Doctor Who alumni have taken to twitter to welcome the new companion to the World of Doctor Who.

It was announced on Saturday that actress Pearl Mackie will join Peter Capaldi in the next series of Doctor Who, due to be screened in 2017.

Congratulations came from many past companions, in whose footsteps Mackie will follow.

The actress made her debut wearing a Prince T-Shirt, which many fans took to be a tribute to the artist who died last week. However Doctor Who brand manager, Edward Russell, confirmed that the sequence was filmed over a week ago and the costumn was just a weird coincidence.

Mackie is currenltly starring in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time in London's West End

Congratulations also followed from Doctor Who actors Ingrid Oliver and Joivan Wade as well as casting director Andy Prior. Meanwhile comic book artist Blair Shedd was quick to capture the character of Bill.

The actress herself tweeted about her excitement at winning the role.

DW Comic news

Titan Comics this week release the fourth volumes of both the Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor by Nick Abadzis and Eleonora Carlini, Elena Casagrande and Doctor Who: The Eleventh Doctor by writers Si Spurrier & Rob Williams, with art by Simon Fraser and Warren Pleece.

Doctor Who: Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song

Writer: Nick Abadzis
Artists: Eleonora Carlini, Elena Casagrande
Colorists: Claudia SG Iannicello, Arianna Florean
Cover: Alex Ronald

A bold new season begins for the Tenth Doctor and companion Gabby Gonzalez! Whether facing down an evil corruption of sentient music on a gas giant, catching up on unseen trips with Gabby's best friend Cindy Wu, or journeying back to the dawn of humankind to witness the clash between Neanderthals and Cro-Magnons, there are no limits to the adventure - or the danger!

Doctor Who: Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song Doctor Who: Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song Doctor Who: Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song Doctor Who: Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song Doctor Who: Tenth Doctor Vol. 4: The Endless Song

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Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Vol. 4: The Then And The Now

Writers: Si Spurrier & Rob Williams
Artists: Simon Fraser, Warren Pleece
Colorists: Gary Caldwell, Hi-Fi

Accused of terrible war crimes that he can't remember committing, the Eleventh Doctor goes on the run with his companion Alice Obiefune, along with a mysterious amnesiac who calls herself The Squire! As they dig deep into the history of the Time War in hope of clearing the Doctor's name, the bounty hunter called The Then and The Now, a hideous perversion of spacetime, tracks them at every turn!

Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Vol. 4: The Then And The Now Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Vol. 4: The Then And The Now Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Vol. 4: The Then And The Now Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Vol. 4: The Then And The Now Doctor Who: Eleventh Doctor Vol. 4: The Then And The Now

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Both volumes are available from Wednesday 27th April