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9-11-07 (10:59AM EDT)---- SMAP Drama Pushes EVA To #2 Box Office Slot

The film adaptation of the local TV hit "Hero" has taken the Japanese boxoffice by storm, opening Saturday on a record-breaking 475 screens and earning 1.08 billion ($9.4 million) over the weekend. Distributor Toho said that about 750,000 people saw the big-screen debut of the Fuji Television Network series, but that figure might have been even higher had the country not been recovering from the impact of a major typhoon. With a per-screen average of $19,790, Toho predicts "Hero" will surpass 10 billion in earnings and has a chance of being the highest-earning title in Japan this year. "Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End" presently holds the top spot, with a gross of 11 billion. The film has benefited enormously from the presence of Takuya Kimura, a member of the popular boy band SMAP, who plays the lead role of unconventional public prosecutor Kohei Kuryu. "Hero" was initially a TV drama in 2001, quickly becoming the most-watched series in Japanese history, with an average viewer share of more than 34%. After a five-year break, Fuji resurrected the show in 2006 with a two-hour TV special, another big ratings success that paved the way for the movie version. Directed by Masayuki Suzuki, the title has already been snapped up in other Asian markets and there are high hopes that it will break into the U.S. and European markets as well. Kimura was in Cannes this year to promote the movie, which also will screen at the upcoming Pusan International Film Festival in South Korea. Source: The Hollywood Reporter Thanks To Daniel Zelter For The News.

9-10-07 (11:57AM EDT)---- Sosei No Aquarion OVA 2 Release

Media Factory has announced a November 22 release for the second and final Sosei No Aquarion OAV volume in Japan.

9-10-07 (9:13AM EDT)---- Ikigami To Be Adapted To Film

Young Sunday has published details to the effect that Motaro Mase's manga Ikigami will become a film to be released in 2008.

9-10-07 (8:48AM EDT)---- Comic Yoshimoto Could Return

Although they are estimated to have lost between 2-300 million Yen on the project, publishers for manga comedy magazine Comic Yoshimoto have said they'll pull back and examine the needs of comedy fans and examine a possible restart in the future. See our September 8th entry for background details.

9-10-07 (8:24AM EDT)---- Hatsune Miku Virtual Idol Software Hits #1 On Amazon

First reported here back on September 3rd Crypton Future Media is promoting its new Hatsune Miku virtual idol software that makes human singers obsolete. It allows musicians to inject the voice of their self styled 16-year-old pop idol into any melody and sing the lyrics to any song they choose. Voice actress Saki Fujita (Tokimeki Memorial) provided the model voice for the program. The soft ranked in 1st place in Amazon Japan's top software sales rankings as of September, 10th. The achievement is very unusual for DTM (Desktop Music) package. Retail stocks of the software are said to be extremely low and may be depleted in many shops by the end of this week.

9-10-07 (8:08AM EDT)---- Hatara Kizzu Maihamu Gumi Site Launches

Toei launched their official website for the upcoming TV seriesHatara Kizzu Maihamu Gumi.

9-10-07 (7:57AM EDT)---- Genshiken 2 Start Date

The sequel TV series to the anime about anime fans, Genshiken series 2 has been scheduled to start at 25:30 on Tuesday, October 9, 2007.

9-10-07 (7:46AM EDT)---- Ookami to Koushinryou To Broadcast In Winter

First announced in August, the 12 episode anime TV adaptation of author Isuna Hasekura and illustrator Juu Ayakura's light novel Ookami to Koushinryou has been scheduled to begin in winter 2008. A manga adaptation by Keito Koume will start serialization in Dengeki Maoh on September 27. The series has sold over 500,000 copies in Japan as of August, 2007. www.spicy-wolf.com

9-10-07 (6:58AM EDT)---- 37 New Fall TV Series Scheduled

With the new Japanese fall anime TV season now locked in, it's come to light that 37 series will comprise the schedule. The number is down 18 series on 2006 autumn season.

9-8-07 (3:28AM EDT)---- Animax Grand Prize Winner To Be Animeted Professionally

All anime broadcaster Animax has announced the winner of its 6th Animax Grand Prize anime scenario competition. A two million Yen prize was awarded to Takamaga Hayato for his Takane No Jitensha which will be animated by A-1 Pictures in 2008. 3000 entries were received from across Asia, this was the first year the competition was open to the international audience.

9-8-07 (12:52AM EDT)---- Comic Yoshimoto Indefinitiely Suspends Publication

Shinbunka reports entertainment agency Yoshimoto Kogyo's first of a kind manga effort Comic Yoshimoto will suspend publication indefinitely from the 7th issue to be released on September 18th. As we reported back on January 16th, the agency announced it was "making a raid on the manga field". On January 4th president Isao Yoshino gave a speach at the Swiss hotel Namhae Osaka where the new Comic Yoshimoto magazine was announced. 20-25 different serials all penned by professional mangaka were to be published therein. Plots were based around member celebrities of the agency such as former wrestler Razor Ramon (HG - Hard Gay) (inncidently Go Nagai (Cutey Honey) illustrated his serial). The circulation was a twice a month affair (released on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday) with a 320 Yen pricetag. 250,000 debut issues were printed and released on June 19. The sales network consisted of bookstores and convenience stores nationwide. Subsidiary Yoshimoto Books was formed in March established by existing publisher "Crocodilian Books". Isao Takenaka of PR mag Monthly Yoshimoto served as editor and chief. President Yoshino planned to have the company invest 500 million Yen on the project. The target demographic was men 20-40-years old. Although their official position is "no comment" at this time, declining sales are said to have contributed to the apparant end of the magazine. Although 250,000 #1 issues were printed up only around 30% of that number were actually sold upon release. Afterwards the circulation was scaled down to 135,000 per issue and towards the end Yoshimoto was only seeing sales of 10-20,000 copies per issue.

9-7-07 (12:52PM EDT)---- Hirohiko Araki Image Hype Crashes Cell Website

After being picked up as mainstream news in the Japanese press on Friday, a current issue cover image by Jojo's Bizarre Adventure mangaka Hirohiko Araki has apparantly sent a barrage of interest (most likely by those seeking a higher res image of the cover as opposed to the relatively smaller ones that have been circulating) to the Cell Magazine website, taking it offline for most of the last 24 hours. As of this posting a placeholder has been posted relaying the site "is currently unavailable due to high demand".

9-7-07 (10:06AM EDT)---- Police Shut Down Odex Protest / Fans Holding Anime Figurines

Reuters reports: A protest action by a group of Singaporeans with Japanese anime figurines such as the 5-inch tall Ultramen, robots and monsters with placards met some real-life police in the city-state. A handful of fans of Japanese anime had turned up at a Singapore public park on August 25 with armfuls of the toys to protest against a clampdown on Internet downloading of anime material by Singapore animation distributor Odex. The incident was not reported in the local press, but pictures and accounts have started circulating on many blogs and political Web sites. "The police didn't stop us from what we wanted to do. But their being there was enough to intimidate," the event's organiser -- who only wanted to be known by his online moniker Zer0 -- told Reuters by telephone. He added that police -- who had four anti-riot vans at the scene -- also took down the anime fans' particulars and that they were filmed by plainclothes policemen. A police spokeswoman said she could not immediately comment. Public protests are rare in Singapore, where outdoor demonstrations are banned and any public gathering of more than four people requires a permit.

9-7-07 (10:03AM EDT)---- Production I.G. On Star Ocean Anime Sequences

Square Enix launched a portal site for 2 new Star Ocean RPG's it will promoting at the Tokyo Game Show later this month. One of them, Star Ocean First Departure for PSP, will feature cut scene animation sequences produced by Production I.G. .

9-7-07 (9:52AM EDT)---- Kyoto Manga Museum Quick Facts

Kyoto International Manga Museum, housing the largest collection (200,000 items) of manga related materials in all Japan has greeted 182,920 people as of August 26th. The facility opened in November, 2006. Around 15% of that number are overseas visitors.

9-7-07 (9:06AM EDT)---- Lance Of Longinus Auction Wraps

The Yahoo Auction for a Gainax authorized professional art replica of the Lance Of Longinus prop from Evangelion has closed 6 minutes prior to this posting. The high bid out of 413 was 13,727,000 Yen. At one point the auction had climbed above 10 billion Yen.

9-7-07 (5:46AM EDT)---- Junjou Roman Chika To Be Animated

From the October issue of Newtype comes news that nakamura shungiku's manga Junjou Roman Chika will be developed into a TV anime series. The currently unlaunched official website will be www.suzukisan.info.

9-7-07 (5:16AM EDT)---- 3 Million View Gundam 00 Promo Online

Bandai revelaed a Gundam 00 video teaser has logged more than 3 million views.

9-7-07 (4:00AM EDT)---- Jojo's Hirohiko Araki Illustrates Cell Cover

An illustration by Jojo's Bizarre Adventure mangaka Hirohiko Araki dominates the cover of the current issue (Volume 130, Issue 3) of Cell Magazine. The American biweekly scientific journal publication focuses on exceptional research articles in areas including molecular biology, biochemistry, cancer research and cell biology. The issue is publicly available on September 7th. The cover image shows a character like that of the an ESP powered member of Stand in the Jojo's stories destroying a harmful protein. From Cell's own description:On the cover: Presynaptic plasticity is a fundamental, yet poorly understood, neural phenomenon that is thought to be the basis of learning and memory. In this issue, Yao et al. (pp. 943?957) identify a novel ubiquitin ligase named SCRAPPER, which is responsible for tuning of synaptic vesicle release probability. SCRAPPER ubiquitinates presynaptic active zone protein RIM1, triggering its proteasomal degradation. Neurons from the Scrapper-knockout mice have hyper electrophysiological activity and contained increased amount of RIM1, and these phenotypes could be rescued by re-expression of SCRAPPER or knockdown of RIM1. The results highlight the importance of protein degradation in the regulation of synaptic activity in vivo. On the cover, the purple SCRAPPER humanoid is putting blue heart-shaped ubiquitins on the red RIM creatures. Japanese manga artist Hirohiko Araki created the cover image with scientific direction from Drs. Setou and Ageta.

9-7-07 (3:39AM EDT)---- Hikaru Utada Evangelion Theme Single Tops Japanese Charts

Beautiful World, the theme song single to the latest Evangelion film has led weekly radio air charts for the week of September 5th. The ranking is compiled via 31 bureaus cross Japan. The single was released on August 29th. The pop singer herself is admittedly a huge Evangelion fan.

9-7-07 (2:54AM EDT)---- D.C.II (Dacapo II) Details

New details are out on the forthcoming Dacappo II animation in the October issue of Newtype: Director: Hideki Okamoto, Series Composition: Tomoharu Ameno, Character Design: Torisawa Noriko, Animation Production: feel. Broadcast debut: 10/07 Chiba Broadcasting at 23:30-. Opening theme: Sakura Kimi Ni Emu by Yozuca, Ending theme: Yasashi Sa Ha Ame No You Ni by CooRie. Cast include: Asakura Otohime: Takagaki Aya, Asakura Yukari Yume: Horie Yui, Shirakawa Nanaka: Chihara Miri. It's been revealed the seiyuu audtions were held 6 times to cast the roles. Original creator Circus wants to have the story adapted to anime film next. Circus is also planning to develop an original anime with Star Child in the future.

9-7-07 (2:45AM EDT)---- Rental Magica Anime To Debut In October

The first images and video trailer for the new Rental Magica TV animation has been posted to the official website. Broadcast is scheduled to begin via Chiba TV in October.

9-7-07 (2:15AM EDT)---- Lucky Star DVD Sales Figures

Kadokawa Shoten reports the DVD release of its Lucky Star brand has been highly successful. Volume 1 sold on June 22nd in Japan moved 60,000 units. DVD releases continue through May, 2008 and the company predicts each volume will sell between 40,000-60,000 units according to current sales trend data. They expect to rake in 700 million Yen all told on the releases.

9-7-07 (1:41AM EDT)---- Warner Brothers Acquires Robotech Rights

The Hollywood Reporter mentions that after a lengthy negotiation, Warner Bros. Pictures has picked up the rights to bring anime classic "Robotech," which featured giant robots known as mechas, to the big screen. Spiderman actor Toby Maguire is producing through his Maguire Entertainment banner and is eyeing the lead role in what the studio plans on being a tentpole sci-fi franchise. "We are very excited to bring 'Robotech' to the big screen," Maguire said. "There is a rich mythology that will be a great foundation for a sophisticated, smart and entertaining film." Drew Crevello also is producing through his Supercool Hollywood BigTime Prods. Craig Zahler ("The Brigands of Rattleborge") has been tapped to write the screenplay. Frank Agrama of rights-holder Harmony Gold will exec produce; Jason Netter will serve in a producer capacity. Matthew Reilly brought the project to Warners and is overseeing. Daniel Shafer brought the project to Maguire and will shepherd for the company. Robotech is based on the Mosepada, Super Dimensional Fortress Macross and Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross, anime franchises.

9-7-07 (12:26AM EDT)---- Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji - Official Anime Title And VA Star Selected

Masato Hagiwara (Takuya Shirakawa - The place promised in our early days) will play the leading role in the TV anime adaptation of Nobuyuki Fukumoto's Tobaku Mokushiroku Kaiji manga. The series which begins on NTV in October has been officially titled Gyakkyou Burai Kaiji. The official website launched just days ago has yet to reflect either of these details.

9-6-07 (11:48PM EDT)---- Indie Osaka Anime Series Seeks To Draw Foreign Tourism

FANWORKS has launched their From Osaka With Cheer animation series online. In coperation with Osaka Prefecture and the Osaka Sightseeing Association the group is producing a number of anime shorts, appealing to foreign tourists worldwide. The first episode is freely available online now with Japanese, English, Korean, Cantonese and Mandarin subtitles.

9-6-07 (11:34PM EDT)---- Pizza Hut Ties Up With Latest Evangelion Film

American based restaurant chain Pizza Hut has struck up a new web campaign / partnership for its Japanese stors involving the new Eva movie. Online orders and club members can get an oversized Ayanami Rei cardboard cutout as well as special wallpapers.

9-6-07 (11:25PM EDT)---- Ha Tara Kiss Maihamu Gumi Site Opens

TV Asahi opened their official website for the Ha Tara Kiss Maihamu Gumi TV Anime. Broadcast is scheduled to start on Sunday, October 7, 2007.

9-6-07 (11:23PM EDT)---- DRAGONAUT TV Debut

DRAGONAUT THE RESONANCE has been given a 25:50- Wednesday, October 3 debut on TV Tokyo.

9-6-07 (11:07PM EDT)---- NEC Computers GOLGO 13 Campaign

NEC's ULTRALITE computer brand has adopted Takao Saito's James Bond style manga assasin Duke Togo as part of a new promotional campaign. A Golgo 13 manga strip informs buyers as to the various features of the computers, fans are offered a fre Wallpaper with clock and calandar features as well.

9-6-07 (8:22AM EDT)---- Gundam 00 To Be With Us Until 2009

At the big Gundam 00 preview event held at Nakano Sun Plaza this past weekend, show staff mentioned that although the 1st TV season of Gundam 00 will only run 25 episodes (6 months) followed by an undetermined "break period" and then a second season, the effort will be a 3 year project when all is said and done. When it does eventually wrap up it will be sometime in 2009, a year which marks the 30th anniversary of the franchise.

9-6-07 (2:44AM EDT)---- Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Anime First Look

TV Tokyo is gearing up to start broadcast of the new Pocket Monster spinoff anime Pokemon Fushigi No Danjon Ji No Tanken Tai Yami No Tanken Tai on September 9th. Dengeki Online has some of the first cutframe stills. The storyline is based on the most recent Pokemon Mystery Dungeon videogame series.

9-6-07 (2:16AM EDT)---- Umisho Hits PS2

Degeki Online is now hosting some images from the forthcoming Kenko Zenrakei Suieibu Umisho PS2 game. Release is planned for October 25 for 7,140 Yen. A special limited edition will be sold for 9,870 Yen with a special Drama CD and OST disc.

9-6-07 (2:12AM EDT)---- Fist Creator's New Children's Animation

Hokuto No Ken mangaka Tetsuo Hara's children oriented anime property Mori no Senshi Bonolon will begin running on satellite broadcaster Kids Station on November 5th. The work is based on a picture book series distributed free of charge in 2005 in convenience stores and shops.

9-6-07 (1:53AM EDT)---- Cinnamon Voice Leads Selected

2007 marks the 5th anniversary of Sanrio's character property Cinnamon Roll. The Madhouse animated film releases to Japanese theaters during the winter vacation period on December 22nd. On the 5th it was announced that Satomi Ishihara and Jinnai Tomonori would play the leads of Anna and Chowder respectively.

9-6-07 (1:08AM EDT)---- 5 CM At San Diego Film Fest Next Month

Makoto Shinkai's newest anime feature will be screened in Ocotber along with other quality Asian films at the San Diego Film Festival. Thanks To Daniel Zelter for the news.

9-6-07 (1:00AM EDT)---- Less Punch In Your Pocky

Ezaki Glico has announced it's cutting the content of its "Pocky Chocolate", "Men's Pocky", and "Pocky Extra Fine products by about 10% (from 80 to 72 grams) as of October 2nd. The reason cited is the soaring prices of ingrdeients such as dairy products used in the chocolate due to the recent rises in the crude oil market.

9-5-07 (11:59PM EDT)---- Free Cosplay Magazine Cospick Launches

Crossbridge, who manages Akihabara info site akiba.tv began circulating their new free cosplay magazine Cospick on August 17. Those in their 20s are the target demographic and besides being available at 50 shops and locations many gratis copies were being circulated at cosplay events between August and September. Circulation is 10,000, publishing schedule is every other month.

9-5-07 (11:45PM EDT)---- Prism Ark PS2 RPG Sneak Peek

Famitsu posted images of the upcoming PlayStation 2 release of Prism Ark. Japanese street date is December, 2007 for 7140 Yen.

9-5-07 (11:32PM EDT)---- Next Gegege No Kitaro Animation Scheduled

Based on the Shigeru Mizuki manga, Toei has announced the TV anime of Habaka Kitaro will begin running in January.

9-5-07 (11:11PM EDT)---- Life TV Drama Generates High Controversy

The Fuji TV live-action drama adaptation of Keiko Suenobu's manga Life has recently been the subject of a viewer row due its extreme depictions of highschool bullying. At the center of the storm are both the sympathetic voices of high school students themselves and the harsh criticisms and protests of older parents regarding the content. Some of the scenes of contention involve a girl student being thrown out a window and another getting spray paint sprayed in her hair. The show which started broadcast in June has drawn around 2,000 criticism inquireies and 13,000 posts to the official BBS as of late August. 55 criticisms and complaints were publicly announced by the "Committee Concerning Broadcasting and Youth" and "Broadcasting Ethics And Program Improvement" on September 3rd. In the USA, the English language version of the manga, published by Tokyopop has seen some changes due to content of its own, originally having been rated OT (Older Teen; 16+), Volume 6 saw an abrupt and unexplained change of rating to M (Mature; 18+).

9-5-07 (10:05PM EDT)---- Zou No Senaka Manga Adaptation To Be Serialized By 14 Publishers

Author and Producer Yasushi Akimoto has revealed plans that his novel (and soon film to be released October 27th) "Zou no Senaka" (The Back of an Elephant) will get an unprecedented cross media promotion when it is soon adapted by 14 publishers. Plans are in the works to adapt the story to a picture book, radio and TV drama and animation as well. Koji Yakusho (Babel) will star in the movie to be dirceted by Satoshi Isaka. For the manga adaptations, Akimoto's words will provide the story and script basis and leave the illustrations to the various publishers. Magazines "Chorus" (Shueisha), "BE-LOVE" (Kodansha) and "Young King" (Shonen Gahosha) have all been confirmed to run the comic. The plot centers on the love story of a 48-year-old white-collar worker diagnosed with lung cancer in the advanced stages who is given 6 months to live. The highly acclaimed text was originally serialized by Sankei Shimbun and published as a book in 2006. Akimoto lost his own father in 2004 and drew from that experience in this fiction.

9-5-07 (9:06PM EDT)---- First Look At Ichigo Ichie Anime

Following stationary manufacturer Mindwave's news that characters from their popular series Ichigo Ichie will be adapted to an animation officially titled "Ichigo Ichie Koi Bana Tomo Bana". Mindwave updated their official website with the first apparant cutframe stills and storyboards from the series of 13 5 minute episodes. Broadcaster Kids Station also made an update signaling the broadcast's start in October over on their website.

9-5-07 (8:53PM EDT)---- 5 Minutes Of Sword Of The Stranger To Stream Online Free

You can catch a 5 minute video outake of Masahiro Ando / BONES new anime film Stranger - Mukoh Hadan (Sword Of The Stranger) on Biglobe in a 33 hour window from 15:00 on 9/7 - 24:00 on 9/8.

9-5-07 (8:52PM EDT)---- NIGHT WIZARD: THE ANIMATION TV Start

Kids Station has given the official sign-on date for the NIGHT WIZARD: THE ANIMATION as Tuesday, October 2, 2007 26:00-26:30 on Tokyo MX.

9-5-07 (8:51PM EDT)---- Jyushin Enbu - Hero Tales Broadcast Start

The Jyushin Enbu - Hero Tales has been given a broadcast debut on TV Tokyo of 26:00 on Sunday, October 7th.

9-5-07 (8:01AM EDT)---- 24 No Hitomi To Be Adapted To Drama

According to Weekly Shonen Champion No. 41 Kei Kurajima's gag manga 24 No Hitomi will be adapted to an 80 episode live action TBS drama starring Arina Akiyama. The storyline deals with a deceitful beautiful female woman teacher. Volume 4 of the manga goes on sale on October 5th.

9-5-07 (7:26AM EDT)---- Myself Yourself PS2 Video Clip

Dengeki Online is hosting a video preview for the upcoming P2 game version of Myself ; Yourself.

9-5-07 (7:21AM EDT)---- DVD For New Eva Film Already Listed On Amazon

Amazon Japan has a page setup for the eventual DVD release of the latest Evangelion film. No details are given as to the release date although the venue has served to generate several reviews of the movie's content already.

9-5-07 (7:10AM EDT)---- Savage Genius On Kiddy Grade Movie Ending

Victor announced J-group Savage Genius will provide the ending theme song to the forthcoming Kiddy Grade anime film. The track will be titled TRUTHDAWN.

9-5-07 (6:46AM EDT)---- 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.

9-5-07 (4:52AM EDT)---- Otaking Goes On Dieting Binge

ZakZak has a current pic of Studio Gainax's Otaking Toshio Okada. Their article discusses how the 49 year company co-founder, shed his former 117 kilo persona to arrive at his current 67 kilo 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 alot 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 ceratin 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.

9-5-07 (4:04AM EDT)---- New Images: Mikie Hara As Cutey Honey

Livedoor and Mycom Journal has new images of Mikie Hara in costume from TV Tokyo's Cutie Honey: The Live press conference held yesterday. It's stressed the live action version of the character's breast size has gone from an F cup with movie actress Eriko Sato to G cup status with Mikie Hara in the new TV series.

9-5-07 (3:41AM EDT)---- 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 alot 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 a 280 minute set and is pegged for a December 21st region s Japanese release

9-5-07 (2:52AM EDT)---- 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. 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 bookelt are included as extras.

9-5-07 (1:59AM EDT)---- First Look: Sketchbook Full Color S

Goo scored some of the first character profiles and cutframe stills from the upcoming Sketchbook Full Color S TV anime. Based on the popular Comic Blade four frame comic strip. Broadcast begins on TV Tokyo Channel 12 Monday, October 1st.

9-5-07 (1:58AM EDT)---- 3rd ARIA Season Confirmed

Production of a 3rd ARIA TV animation season has been announced. ARIA The ORIGINATION is expected to be detailed in an upcoming issue of monthly Comic Blade.

9-5-07 (1:27AM EDT)---- 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 litteraly 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. Release is scheduled in November for 9,240 Yen. The cadre of high profile character designers assembled for the project is generating alot 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.

9-5-07 (12:17AM EDT)---- Hunter X Hunter In Percentages

Some Japanese fans have taken a look at the percentage of new Hunter X Hunter serials that have been published annually based against their regular serialization schedule they were supposed to be released on. They figure author Yoshihiro Togashi met 92% of that schedule from the year of the manga's debut in 1998. It decreased gradually year after year following that winding down to about 8.3% in 2006. It's planned to restart for the first time in a year and a half on October 6th, in WJC 45.

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