SciFi Japan
    VOLTRON: DEFENDER OF THE UNIVERSE EDITION of MONSTERPOCALYPSE Collectible Miniatures Game Coming in 2010 Source: Privateer Press press release Official Site: Monsterpocalypse.com Privateer Press, Inc. and World Events Productions, Ltd. are proud to announce an agreement giving Privateer Press rights to license the widely popular Voltron: Defender of the Universe for Privateer’s hit collectible miniatures game MONSTERPOCALYPSE. The new set is expected to release in early 2010 and will feature iconic characters from the classic VOLTRON animated series. Matt Wilson, Privateer Press’ Chief Creative Officer and MONSTERPOCALYPSE creator, said about the agreement, “MONSTERPOCALYPSE was created with the goal of being able to feature guest stars from our favorite films and TV shows that have done so much to inspire the creation of the game. Along with millions of other fans since VOLTRON hit our airwaves in the 80s, we at Privateer have all been in love

    Get a Copy for Free, Courtesy of Titan Books and SciFi Japan Source: Titan Books Official Site: schoolgirlmilkycrisis.com Special Thanks to Tom Green Titan Books is offering SciFi Japan readers a chance to win a copy of their new book Schoolgirl Milky Crisis: Adventures in the Anime and Manga Trade. For anyone wondering "What the heck is Schoolgirl Milky Crisis?", the answer is that the book is a collection of articles and essays on manga, anime, and Japanese movies written by British author and scriptwriter Jonathan Clements. Clements is a highly respected authority on the subject, having co-authored The Anime Encyclopedia, written The Dorama Encyclopedia: A Guide to Japanese TV Drama, and provided liner notes for anime and Japanese movie DVDs. He has been a writer and columnist for the UK Sci-Fi Channel website, the BBC, Newtype USA, Judge Dredd Megazine, NEO, 2000 AD, and SFX

    Source: VIZ Media, MediaLab press release Special Thanks to Evelyn Dubocq and Erik Jansen VIZ Media announced today that Shonen Jump magazine has a special treat for readers—an invitation to read a free preview of the upcoming Naruto manga Volume 45 (rated ‘T’ For Teens)— online at shonenjump.com, for a limited time only. These chapters will not run in the magazine and will not be available in graphic novel form until July 2009. The 120-page preview will be available online beginning today through May 5th exclusively at shonenjump.com. A preview link appears on the homepage. Visitors must type in the password that appears on page 20 of the May issue of Shonen Jump to access the chapters. Naruto is one of the hottest series from Japan and continues to be one of VIZ Media’s most successful manga and animated properties. Back in February, VIZ Media unveiled

    Online Media Distribution Leader to Release Anime and Live Action Titles from TV Tokyo, Tezuka Productions, CoMix Wave, Gonzo, Munhwa Broadcasting and More Source: BAM! Marketing, Publicity & Promotions press releases Special Thanks to Chase Wang The online media distribution giant Crunchyroll has announced a stunning number of new acquisitions and business partnerships over the past month. More information on each of these announcements can be found at crunchyroll.com. Crunchyroll and Gonzo Forge the "Urban Jungle" of SHANGRI-LA with Dream Team Members Bessho, Ohnogi, Mori and Murata Crunchyroll and Gonzo team up again to bring SHANGRI-LA, the animated 3D-CGI sci-fi property from NewType based on the original novel by Eiichi Ikegami, for a worldwide debut starting on April 06, 2009. SHANGRI-LA is a must-see anime series put together by a dream team of acclaimed talents including director Makoto Bessho, writer Hiroshi Ohnogi, creative producer Takeshi

    Three-Part Chapter Book Series, Junior Novel, Collectible Sticker Book and Posterzine Based On The New Feature Film Source: VIZ Media, MediaLab press release Special Thanks to Evelyn Dubocq and Erik Jansen VIZ Media, LLC is releasing an array of DRAGONBALL: EVOLUTION publications based on the upcoming live-action film from 20th Century Fox starring Justin Chatwin as Goku, Emmy Rossum as Bulma, Jamie Chung as Chi Chi, and Chow Yun-Fat as Master Roshi. Rated PG, the movie centers on a team of warriors, each of whom possess special abilities. Together, they protect Earth from a force bent on dominating the universe by controlling the mystical objects from which the film takes its name. DRAGONBALL: EVOLUTION opens nationwide on April 8th and is inspired by Akira Toriyama’s smash hit Dragon Ball manga series, also published domestically by VIZ Media and featured in Shonen Jump magazine. DRAGON BALL has

    April 2009 Issue Covers Visual Arts And Techniques Taught By Leading Manga Creators Well As Fashion, Crafts And More Source: VIZ Media, MediaLab press release Special Thanks to Evelyn Dubocq and Erik Jansen VIZ Media, LLC`s annual Art Issue of Shojo Beat magazine is expected to hit newsstands nationwide on March 17th. In addition to the next installments of the currently serialized shojo manga series HONEY AND CLOVER, HONEY HUNT, CRIMSON HERO, SAND CHRONICLES, HARUKA: BEYOND THE STREAM OF TIME and VAMPIRE KNIGHT, this special issue will allow readers to explore the latest trends in Japanese kawaii artwork, evaluate the approaches of top shojo manga creators and more! The special April 2009 Art Issue of Shojo Beat, a continual favorite with readers, takes a broad approach to art, focusing not only on visual arts but also fashion, crafts, and cooking. “The Fine Art of Kawaii” spotlights

    Actress Recounts Working on Toho Fantasy Epic in Latest Shock Cinema Magazine Source: Shock Cinema magazine Official site: shockcinemamagazine.com Shock Cinema #36 recently rolled off the presses, featuring a lengthy interview by Steve Ryfle with actress Linda Haynes, one of the stars of Toho’s LATITUDE ZERO (1969). Haynes was a neophyte actress when producer Don Sharpe whisked her away from Hollywood to Japan, where she spent several months filming alongside big-screen legend Joseph Cotten and co-stars Patricia Medina, Richard Jaeckel, Cesar Romero, Akira Takarada, and others in the troubled U.S.-Japanese co-production about a war between undersea kingdoms. The interview covers the breadth of Haynes’ career—which also included the blaxploitation classic COFFY (1973) with Pam Grier, the Paul Newman neo-noir THE DROWNING POOL (1975), and the revenge exploitationer ROLLING THUNDER (1977), in which she co-starred as William Devane’s girlfriend—but much of it is devoted

    Visiting the Merchandising Company for Shim Hyung-rae`s Creations Author: Kim Song-ho Source: Zena Pictures / Zero Nine Character Co., Ltd. Special Thanks to Hong Gi-hun and Park Sang-kyu A SciFi JAPAN EXCLUSIVE There has never been a heyday for Korean monster films. Japan in the 1960s had their first "monster boom", and there have been countless movies and television programs in the decades since. The US has also produced hundreds of such films. But, until now, there have been only a handful of Korean monster films made since the 1960s. Even so, there is history of monster films in Korea. From the quintessential giant monster movie YONGARY, MONSTER FROM THE DEEP (Daekoesu Yonggary, 1967) to the recent hit DRAGON WARS (D-War, 2007), Korean monster films have been produced for over four decades, sometimes experiencing ebbs and flows, or even depressions. However, merchandising

    Special Launch Promotion Includes Free Download of the First Episode of BLUE DRAGON on iTunes Through March 10, 2009 Source: VIZ Media press release Official Site: Bluedragon.viz.com Special Thanks to Evelyn Dubocq VIZ Media, LLC has announced the availability of its popular animated series BLUE DRAGON on the iTunes Store in the US and Canada. As a special launch promotion, the first episode of BLUE DRAGON will be available for download for free on the iTunes Store until March 10th and can be found at itunes.com/tv/bluedragon. The BLUE DRAGON animated series, based on the popular Xbox 360 role playing game, is a classic adventure story of magical Shadow powers, flying air fortresses, and unbounded heroism! Brought together by fate, Seven Soldiers of Light must awaken the Shadow within themselves in time to overcome a despotic power and bring peace to their land. Their ensuing journey through

    Fan-Made Figures of Three of Korea`s Most Well-Known Monsters Author: Kim Song-ho Source: Hong Gi-hun, Big Monster Club Can you believe that, in the 40 years since the initial releases of South Korea`s YONGARY, MONSTER FROM THE DEEP (Daekoesu Yonggary, 1967) and SPACE MONSTER MAN WANGMAGWI (Ujugoein Wangmagwi, 1967), there hasn`t been any merchandise of the titular monsters? Well, it`s true. How about Pulgasari from North Korea`s PULGASARI (1985)? Very limited number of figures were released in Japan, but that`s all. Not in Korea. But now we have them because, in 2008, an avid Korean monster fan made them himself! The man in question is Hong Gi-hun. He is a graphic designer and the founder of Big Monster Club, the biggest monster film club in Korea. Mr. Hong founded the club in 1999 on the community section of now-defunct nkino.com, a Korean movie portal site. After

    Source: BAM! Marketing, Publicity & Promotions press release Official Site: crunchyroll.com Special Thanks to Chase Wang NARUTO continues his journey to assist Team Kakashi in next week`s (Thursday; February 19, 2009; 3:00 am PST) simulcast, with Japan, of NARUTO SHIPPUDEN #97 on the fully anime licensed site and leading online destination for anime - Crunchyroll. The leading online anime distributor will simulcast the newest episode for Anime Subscription Members and also provide free viewing of the previous week`s simulcast. More information can be found at www.crunchyroll.com/naruto. Episode Synopsis: From the results of the analysis of the crystallized Parasitic insects, the enemies currently fighting Kakashi`s team are identified as users of the Crystal Style, a rare type of jutsu. Still unclear on what Orochimaru`s objective is, Tsunade cannot hide her irritation and anxiety. Meanwhile, the search team fends off Gozu and Rinji only to find themselves in a

    First-Of-Its-Kind Imprint Launches This Summer To Publish The Best In Contemporary Japanese Science Fiction Novels Source: VIZ Media, MediaLab press releases Special Thanks to Evelyn Dubocq and Erik Jansen VIZ Media, LLC, one of the entertainment industry’s most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, has announced the launch of a brand-new imprint called Haikasoru (meaning “High Castle”), which will publish an array of contemporary Japanese science fiction and fantasy stories for English-speaking audiences. This is the first time an imprint with a dedicated focus on Japanese SF has launched in North America. Haikasoru is scheduled to publish twelve books a year and launches in the summer of 2009 with four titles: The Lord of the Sands of Time by Issui Ogawa, All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka, ZOO by Otsuichi, and Usurper of the Sun by Housuke Nojiri. Haikasoru will be helmed

    VIZ Media To Provide Near Simultaneous U.S.-Japan Release Of New NARUTO SHIPPUDEN Animated Episodes Source: VIZ Media, MediaLab press releases Special Thanks to Evelyn Dubocq and Erik Jansen Last November, VIZ Media, LLC, one of the entertainment industry’s most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, announced an innovative and unprecedented multimedia plan to provide near-simultaneous Japan-U.S. release of NARUTO, one of the most popular Japanese animated and manga properties in the world. This campaign is the latest expansion of VIZ Media’s ongoing strategy to utilize the web to its maximum potential to stream a variety of hit animated properties. Beginning this Thursday, January 15th the latest episode of the NARUTO SHIPPUDEN (English-subtitled) animated series will be available for free viewing on the ultimate destination for anything NARUTO – the official NARUTO website, www.naruto.com, within days of its original airdate in Japan. A new English-subtitled

    Online Streaming, Subscription and Download-To-Own of Classic Toei Animation Titles Source: BAM! Marketing, Publicity & Promotions press release Special Thanks to Chase Wang The Japanese anime production studio Toei Animation Co., Ltd. continues their partnership with the online media distribution giant Crunchyroll to provide streaming, subscription and download-to-own options for GALAXY EXPRESS 999 and CAPTAIN HARLOCK beginning today. More information can be found at www.crunchyroll.com. Mr. Kanji Kazahaya, Director of Toei Animation Co., Ltd.`s International Department, states, "We are excited and thrilled to be continuing our digital business developent with Crunchyroll. This is the new frontier for the anime industry and Crunchyroll is an ideal company to work with because of its international reach and strong community base." "We are extremely pleased to be continuing our strong partnership with Toei Animation," states Crunchyroll CEO Mr. Kun Gao. "Working with Toei Animation allows us

    Online Anime Distribution Leader Launches One of the Most Popular Anime Titles of All Time Source: BAM! Marketing, Publicity & Promotions press release Official Site: www.naruto.com Special Thanks to Chase Wang Crunchyroll, the world`s largest anime-focused content and social networking service, takes a huge and bold step in making a decisive transition from a platform for user-uploaded content to a platform of professionally-produced content with the historic launch of NARUTO SHIPPUDEN. The first eight episodes of the beginning of NARUTO SHIPPUDEN can be accessed immediately, with eight more catalog episodes added every week Friday. In addition, simulcast of the most recent episode one hour after Japan broadcast will be available starting January 8, 2009. More information can be found at www.crunchyroll.com/naruto. Crunchyroll will be offering episodes of the NARUTO SHIPPUDEN series, as well as a lineup of other blockbuster anime titles, as a

    Online Media Distribution Leader to Start Broadcasting EYESHIELD 21 and NEO ANGELIQUE ABYSS plus movies KAEDE NEWTOWN and YONNA IN THE SOLITARY FORTRESS Source: BAM! Marketing, Publicity & Promotions press releases Special Thanks to Chase Wang The online media distribution distribution giant Crunchyroll has announced a new partnership with CoMix Wave Films to provide streaming and subscriptions for the Japanese entertainment company`s popular anime titles KAEDE NEWTOWN (available now) and YONNA IN THE SOLITARY FORTRESS beginning in January 2009. More information can be found at www.crunchyroll.com. Mr. Kazuki Sunami, Director of CoMix Wave Films states, "We are extremelyexcited to present KAEDE NEWTOWN and YONNA IN THE SOLITARY FORTRESS to Crunchyroll`s huge global community of passionate anime fans. Moving forward, we hope to continue to work closely with Crunchyroll to bring the wonderful world of CoMix Wave Film`s creations to this amazing global community." Crunchyroll members will

    Online Media Distribution Leader to Broadcast Anime Sequel on January 8, 2009 Source: BAM! Marketing, Publicity & Promotions press release Official Site (Japanese): druaga-anime Special Thanks to Chase Wang On April 1, 2008, Gonzo animation premiered THE TOWER OF DRUAGA- ­THE AEGIS OF URUK (Doruaga no To -ji Ijisu obu Uruku), a 12 part anime television series based on Namco`s popular THE TOWER OF DRUAGA video games. The hit show was also simulcast online in Japanese and with English subtitles. Now fans can return to the exciting world of THE TOWER OF DRUAGA in the sequel to ­THE AEGIS OF URUK with the Crunchyroll Anime Membership. Following on the suspense of the original title, the sequel THE TOWER OF DRUAGA-THE SWORD OF URUK promises to continue with many surprises in store. More information can be found at www.crunchyroll.com. Crunchyroll Anime Membership will begin on January 8,

    Latest News Includes Partnerships with Warner Home Video and Canadian iTunes Store Source: VIZ Media, MediaLab press releases Special Thanks to Evelyn Dubocq and Erik Jansen Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan’s largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa and is a global ex-Asia licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including magazines such as Shonen Jump and Shojo Beat, graphic novels, and DVDs, and develops, markets, licenses, and distributes animated entertainment for audiences

    Online Media Distribution Giant Partners to Begin Online Streaming, Subscription and Download-To-Own of Anime Titles Source: BAM! Marketing, Publicity & Promotions press release Special Thanks to Chase Wang The Japanese based multi-media entertainment company Pony Canyon Inc. has struck a partnership with online media distribution giant Crunchyroll to provide streaming and subscriptions for some of the company`s most popular anime titles. More information can be found at www.crunchyroll.com. Pony Canyon Inc.`s Deputy General Manager Hideyuki Saida states, "Crunchyroll helps create a new business model for online monetization and we are looking forward to a long and prosperous relationship with them. We want fans abroad to know that we are here for them and want to bring them great anime titles for years to come." Vince Shortino, Crunchyroll General Manager comments, "Crunchyroll is proud to be working with Pony Canyon Inc. We are working

    Monster from SEVENTH VOYAGE OF SINBAD Stars in One-Shot Comic Source: Matt Frank In 2006, comic book publisher BlueWater Productions signed a licensing deal with special effects legend Ray Harryhausen to create new comic series based on Harryhausen`s classic films. The "Ray Harryhausen Signature Series" line launched in mid-2007 with titles such as 20 Million Miles More (a sequel to the 1957 film 20 MILLION MILES TO EARTH), Back to Mysterious Island, It Came from Beneath the Sea... Again, Jason and the Argonauts: The Kingdom of Hades, and Sinbad, Rogue of Mars. One of the most popular of these comics was Wrath of the Titans, which continued the story of Perseus and the other characters from Ray Harryhausen`s CLASH OF THE TITANS (1981) while adding elements and creatures from SEVENTH VOYAGE OF SINBAD (1958). The success of Wrath of the Titans series has led to a

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