MARCH 2002 NEWS
31 March 2002
- Kon Satoshi (director of Perfect Blue) has
announced at the BBS on his homepage
that a major US movie company (Dreamworks
SKG) has secured the worldwide distribution
rights (except for Asia) to his anime movie
Millennium Actress. The contract was
officially executed a few days ago. Millennium
Actress was completed in January 2001 and saw
world premiere in Montreal in July 2001, but has
yet to be officially released in Japan (presently,
the movie is anticipated to be released between
August and September 2002). IIRC, the movie shall
be screened in Singapore shortly. The official
webpage for the movie is here,
but you can read Steve Brandon's Montreal
screening report at Anime News Network's site here.
30 March 2002
- Well, I haven't found any other news of a
CG Appleseed movie, either in English or
Japanese, but thanks to littledonkey/Russell at
the AoD forums for pointing out the following
article at Figures.com.
That article doesn't suggest the creation of a
movie but rather suggests that the DVD is
supplemental to the figures rather than the
figures being an extra to the DVD.
- The first pressing of volume 2 of the
Aquarian Age DVD will come with a box.
To be released 22 May 2002
Catalogue number VIZF-22
Price 6,090 yen (including tax)
The regular edition will be available on the same
day at the same price.
- The first pressing of volume 1 of the
Chobits DVD will also come with a box.
To be released 25 June 2002, price 6,300 yen (including
- The interactive Growlanser DVD
will come with a cover illustration by Urushihara
Satoshi. Growlanser is a series of Playstation
computer games, with character designs by
Urushihara. The first pressing
of the DVD will come with a poster. Tentative
To be released 5 June 2002
Catalogue number PCBX-50304
Price 6,800 yen (excluding tax)
For more information, see CDJapan's listing
of the DVD.
- A limited edition pressing of the Ai Yori
Aoshi Music Collection volume 1 CD will
be available with a special hanging scroll type
CD holder. Details:
To be released 24 May 2002
Catalogue number PICA-1249
Price 2,913 yen (excluding tax)
The regular edition will be available on the same
day at the same price (catalogue number PICA-1250).
- Speaking of Ai Yori Aoshi, now
available for streaming download here
are a trailer for the anime,
together with a music clip for the OP song "Towa
no Hana" by Ishida Yoko. If you don't need
visuals, the OP can also be heard here.
- More details about the Sakura Taisen 3
anime series have been announced at a
Sakura Taisen event, as reported by ZDNet
Japan. This will be a three episode OVA
series about the Paris Hana-Gumi. Episode 1 will
deal with Sumire's retirement. At the same event,
it was announced that a manga version will be
serialised in the manga magazine Monthly Magazine
- The Sega Group has announced plans for a computer
game set in the world of Trigun. I don't
play computer games, so I can't be bothered
reporting more on it ^_^ For more information,
- The Aussies beat the Jaapies today. Again.
This time, in the one day series, and by 37 runs.
Australia now has three wins and a tie in the
best of seven series.
- This week's illustration on GAiNAX's
homepage is an Otaku no Video picture by
- And finally, while you're eating your chocolate
Easter eggs, bear in mind that half the world's
cocoa production comes from nations on the east
coast of Africa, where much of the cocoa
is produced by child slaves. For more
info, listen to Auntie.
29 March 2002
- A reminder that the psychic love-comedy web
anime Psychic Academy, based on the
manga by Katsu Aki (serialised in Monthly
Magazine Z) starts today. You can view episode
- Among the upcoming products by COSPA is Clarice's
ring from Lupin III - The Castle of Cagliostro.
Made of silver 925, the ring comes in sizes 17,
19 and 21 and costs 20,000 yen. Other COSPA
jewellery items include Gundam pendants and rings.
- A summary movie DVD of the Yami no
Matsuei anime series is to be released,
with a limited edition version available. Details:
Yami no Matsuei Soushuhen Special Box
Catalogue number KIBA-9793
To be released 26 June 2002
Price 5,000 yen (excluding tax)
In the box will be a CD-ROM, cushion pouch(?),
name card case, compact mirror, pencilboard,
sticker and postcard.
A regular edition will also be available on the
same day, catalogue number KIBA-793, price 2,800
- Is there an Appleseed movie coming out?
The news I've got is that a preview DVD
is to be sold in June 2002 of a pilot film for a
CG anime movie yet to be released. The DVD will
come with one of three figurines. Tentative
details of the preview DVD:
To be released 25 June 2002
Price 3,800 yen (excluding tax)
Type 1 - Appleseed box with Deunan Knute figure (catalogue
Type 2 - Appleseed box with Deunan Knute figure
with orc suit(?) (catalogue number PIBA-9032)
Type 3 - Appleseed box with Briareos (catalogue
From the catalogue numbers, it seems these are
Pioneer LDC products. This release is not to be
confused with the Bandai release of the 1988 OVA
on 25 July 2002.
27 March 2002
- The seiyuu for the leading role of Haru
in the upcoming Studio Ghibli movie Neko
no Ongaeshi (The Cat Who Returned a Favour)
has been announced: the multi-award winning 20
year old actress Ikewaki Chizuru. In the movie,
scheduled for release in the (northern) summer of
2002, when 17 year old high school student Haru
saves a cat (which cat turns out to be a cat
prince), she's invited to the land of cats.
There, Haru declares that she wants to be a cat,
and a cat baron turns up. Initial pictures can be
found in this Zak
Zak report. Click on the pictures for an
enlarged graphic. The top picture shows some of
the characters from the new movie, including Muta
and the Baron from "Mimi o Sumaseba".
The bottom picture is a photo of Ikewaki. Neko no
Ongaeshi, directed by Morita Hiroyuki, will be a
75 minute movie, to be screened together with the
25 minute long "Ghiblies - episode 2".
A Yomiuri report can be found here.
- The official Asahi Shimbun English report
of Monday's judgment regarding Matsumoto Leiji
is now available here.
- The official
website for the Azumanga Daioh TV
anime series is now up.
26 March 2002
25 March 2002
- With the movie version of the manga Blame!
to screen in the (northern) winter of 2003, a web
anime version will commence distribution
on the internet on 7 June 2002. The web anime
version will consist of six episodes, each of
five minutes' length.
- 6 April 2002 sees the start of the weekly
internet TV program Kaneda Tomoko's Comic
Master Tomo Channel, about making
doujinshi. Seiyuu Kaneda Tomoko (Marie in Onegai
Teacher) will be editor. For more information,
However, to view the previews of the series,
you'll need to access the itv24.com homepage
and click through to the Tomo Channel page.
reports that Matsumoto Leiji's legal
action to prevent Nishizaki Hirofumi
describing himself as author of the anime Uchuu
Senkan Yamato (Space Battleship Yamato) has been dismissed.
Nishizaki was producer of the anime series. Judge
Iimura Toshiaki of the Tokyo District Court today
held that Nishizaki's detailed participation in
the creation process entitled him to be known as
author of the film work pursuant to article 16 of
the Copyright Act. Manga author Matsumoto Leiji's
role in the creation of the anime was said to be
a partial role. Matsumoto has said that the
decision is unfair and that he will appeal -
without his presence, not one frame of the anime
could have been produced. In 2000, Nishizaki was
sentenced to 5 years 6 months' gaol for drug and
possession of illegal arms offences, although
that matter is also presently the subject of an
24 March 2002
are out for the R2 DVD release of Sakura
Taisen the movie:
Special edition version-
Comes with colour booklet, bonus DVD features (pilot
film used for press conference, collection of
staff and cast greetings at various theatres,
trailers, footage of the 5th Sakura Taisen live
musical etc), movie official CD-ROM, carton box
(Edit 25 March - catalogue number KIBA-9794)
Price 9,800 (excluding tax)
Comes with same colour booklet and bonus DVD
(Edit 25 March - catalogue number KIBA-794)
Price 7.800 (excluding tax)
Both versions are to be released on 22 November
23 March 2002
- Hobby Japan's email magazine advises that the
second issue of its OtomeX magazine
(about anime, manga and game "heroine
characters") is due out on 10 May 2002. This
time, the features will include Onegai Teacher.
for the magazine hasn't been updated with this
advises that the broadcast of its Wild 7
Another anime has been put back from 6
April 2002 to 27 April 2002. Episode 2 is then
tentatively set to air on 18 May 2002.
21 March 2002
- The limited edition version of volume 5
of the manga Chobits by CLAMP will come
with a 109 piece jigsaw puzzle in a hexagonal
can, illustrated by CLAMP of course. The volume
will hit the stores on 26 April 2002. The price
of the limited edition version isn't yet clear,
but if the limited edition versions of the
previous volumes are any guide, it'll likely cost
more than the regular edition.
- Upcoming region 2 DVD releases by Bandai
on 25 July 2002:
Brain powerd volumes 1-3 (Dolby Digital stereo,
volume 1 - 2,800 yen - to include two episodes
and creditless OP and ED, volumes 2 and 3 to
include four episodes each and cost 3,800 yen
Black Magic M-66 (Dolby Digital stereo, price 3,800
Appleseed (Dolby Digital stereo, price 3,800 yen)
Musical Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon 10th
Anniversary Festival - first part: Ai no
Sanctuary (Dolby Digital stereo, first pressing
will come with a picture label DVD, price 3,800
yen, not an anime - this will presumably be a
recording of the live performances later this
month to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the
- A Quicktime preview for the upcoming
hentai Urotski anime can now be
As stated, this is a hentai work, so surfer
discretion is advised ^_^
- Volume 13 of the adult manga magazine Comic
Megacube features a pinup by Oh!great.
19 March 2002
- Bugbuster, the 1988 science
fiction/fantasy action doujinshi by Kishiro
Yukito (GUNM/Battle Angel Alita), on which his
Aqua Knight manga is loosely based, is now
available for online purchase here.
130 pages, A5 size, price 900 yen. However, only
orders within Japan are accepted.
- The first issue of new monthly manga
Sum is set to be published on 28
March 2002 by Studio DNA.
Contributors are expected to include Ueda
Shinshu, Kouga Yun (Earthian), Minekura Kazuya (Saiyuki),
Mikawa Beruno, Kari Erika, Tsutsumi Shouko and
- With the upcoming release of the new Lupin III
OVA Ikiteita Majutsushi on 3 April 2002, Gakken
will be releasing a Lupin III Majutsushi
Pycal 1971 vs 2002 book and figure set
on 17 May 2002. The book will include comparisons
of the new work with the old, descriptions of the
two Pycal stories (the first being episode 2 of
the first TV series in 1971), a selection of
episodes from the first series and an interview
with the producer. The 17cm figure will be
modelled on the new OVA and come with a base. Two
figures will be available: one of Lupin, the
other of Fujiko. Price 2,500 yen.
- Shogakukan Production will be releasing a
collection of artwork by Chen Shu Fen and Ping
Fan: Chen Shu Fen & Ping Fan Shisen
Gashuu - The Library. This hardcover
book will include 70 of the best illustrations
chosen by the artists themselves. The Taiwanese
husband and wife artist team have attracted fans
in Japan and their colour manga Blue Note (story
by Sakamoto Yuji) is currently serialised in IKKI
Release date 18 April 2002
Price 2,400 yen
17 March 2002
- The latest anime Mahou no Chocolate (Magical
Chocolate) by the circle/independent
anime studio Ishikawa
Pro is to be featured on the TV station NHK
on 22 March 2002. This 8 minute 30 second anime
took five months and 1,700 cels to make.
Valentine's Day is approaching and Mami-chan
yearns to give a valentine chocolate confession
of love to the popular Ishida-sempai. Her friend
Koko-chan tells her the legend of the magical
chocolate. The VHS version of the anime (and some
of the previous works of Ishikawa Pro) can be
purchased from the indie movies section of Jungle SCS.
An mpeg version on CD-ROM can also be purchased
by mail order from the circle. Price 500 yen.
Screenshots can be viewed and a trailer
downloaded at this
14 March 2002
- First pressings of RahXephon DVD
volumes 1 and 5 will both come with a box. Volume
1 (2 episodes) is due out on 31 May 2002 (catalogue
number ZMBZ-1401, price 5,250 yen - including tax).
That box will hold five DVDs. Volume 5 is due out
on 27 September 2002 (price 6,300 yen - including
- The first pressing of Panyo Panyo DiGi
Charat DVD volume 1 will also come with
a box to hold all four DVDs. Release date 31 May
2002, catalogue number ZMBZ-1431, price 6,090 yen
(including tax). Volume 1 will include twelve
- This Shinseido page
states that the anime Gunparade March,
based on the Playstation game, is to be broadcast
on Fuji TV late night Wednesdays. I haven't found
an actual start date yet, though ^^;;
- A tentative release date for the Initial
D Battle Stage DVD appears to be 15 May
2002. Catalogue number AVBA-14365, price 5,800 (excluding
- The upcoming anime Hoshi
no Koe is to be broadcast on
Hokkaido's UHB station on 21 April 2002 at 2.30pm.
13 March 2002
- The 7th preview of the upcoming Tenchi
Muyo anime is now up here.
- The official homepage for the upcoming Kaishaku
anime UFO Princess Walkure is
However, apart from the BBS, there's nothing much
else to see at the moment. The grand opening of
the site will take place on 29 March 2002.
12 March 2002
- Nikkei Net reports
that the Chinese department of broadcasting, film
and television has stopped the televising of the
Taiwanese drama series Meteor Garden, based on
the Japanese manga and anime Hana Yori
Dango, citing its negative influence on
society and youth. Representatives of the show in
China argue that it is healthy programming.
Broadcast of the show commenced in China late
last year, where it has become a popular series.
- Details for the limited edition first volume of
the DVD release of Galaxy Angel 2nd
series are out:
Galaxy Angel 2nd series vol. 1 Limited Special
Includes angel can (with mobile phone strap set,
5 badge set, angel team emblem pins and punching
Nomad(?)) and special DVD (with secret live video
- 5 songs included, secret game video, cast and
Release date 25 May 2002
Price 5,800 yen
A regular edition will be out on the same day for
10 March 2002
- No news for the past few days as I've been
watching the cricket. Adam Gilchrist is a legend
- Studio Orphee, one of the companies involved with
the anime Kokoro Toshokan (Library),
that the Library Association of Japan will be
purchasing 500 copies of the anime for
500 libraries. Being public libraries,
it is anticipated that the general public will be
able to borrow the anime without charge.
- GAiNAX has announced
the release of a Mahoromatic Anime Genga
(key cel animation) Collection, in the
same vein as the Groundwork of Evangelion and
Groundwork of FLCL books. Volume 1 will cover
original cel drawings for episodes one to six.
200 A4 size pages, to be released on 19 April
2002 at a price of 2,500 yen (excluding tax).
- On the topic of the anime Mahoromatic,
this Japanese fan
site has raised questions whether a
second season will be forthcoming, based
on a report in the current issue of Newtype of
the upcoming announcement of a seiyuu for a
character Minawa at a Mahoromatic event in April
- On 8 March 2002, it was announced on the Sakura
Taisen Online Famitsu Talk Show that a Sakura
Taisen 3 will be animated. No further
details are available at present.
- The official
Lycos page for Psychic Academy,
from where the web anime will commence (free)
distribution on 29 March 2002, is now open.
There's not much to see yet, though.
- Pioneer has announced
that the anime Ai Yori Aoshi is
to commence broadcast on 10 April 2002.
- ZDNet Japan reports that a Doremi
Playstation game to learn English will
be released on 20 March 2002. Entitled "Ojamajo
Doremi Dokaan! MAHO Dou Eigo Festival", the
game will be released by Bandai for 3,800 yen (5,800
yen with a controller set). See here
- Nikkei Net reports
that broadcast station WOWOW is expected
to announce a 1,000 million yen profit
for the period ending March 2002, after previous
forecasts of a 2,200 million yen loss for the
period. This will be the first profit and loss
result in the black since March 2000, with the
station commencing BS (broadcast satellite)
digital broadcasting at the end of 2000.
- Shirow Masamune's manga Gun Dancing,
previously distributed by Kodansha over the
internet on its service E-Manga (fees apply), will
in hardcopy on 22 March 2002. Price 2,200
yen. The manga will also be released with a T-shirt
on the same day for the higher price of 3,000 yen.
At roughly four times the price of a standard
tankouban, will there be any bonus items
accompanying the manga?
- Broccoli has posted up details
for the DVD of the DiGi Charat movie
Hoshi no Tabi:
Release date 12 July 2002
The DVD will include a new animation involving
Pyoko, Rik, Ky and Coo.
Regular edition price 5,800 yen
Limited edition price 8,800 yen
Limited edition version comes with ten bonus
items: 150 page special fan book (a comic
anthology illustrated by Koge-Donbo), DVD box to
hold 10 DVDs, Dejiko figurine, movie soundtrack
CD, PVC key chain, special liner notes, 4 Dejiko
collectible card game promotion cards, 4 Aquarian
Age promotion cards, postcard, sticker.
Pre-orders will also receive a poster.
6 March 2002
- The opening clip and three ending clips for the
web anime Ajimu (now being
released on DVD) can be downloaded here.
- A few more promotional clips for the upcoming ex-Driver
movie can be viewed here.
- Fans of Matsumoto Leiji can now
buy wine to accompany his works.
The first release (Maetel Legend 1999 vol. 1)
will be limited to 100 sets of two bottles of
white German wine. The labels for these bottles
will be stamped with gold Maetel Legend inlays
using a sandblast technique. The "Green
Maetel" wine will be 1996 Leiwener
Klostergarten Riesling Spätlese Mosel-Saar-Ruwer
in a light green bottle. The "Viridian
Emeraldas" wine will be 1999 Mainzer Domherr
Rheinhessen Kabinett in a dark green bottle.
Price 14,700 yen. Orders should be placed by 10
March 2002. See here
for more details.
- After the release of the 3 Yu Yu Hakusho DVD box
sets and the individual release of the 28 volumes
comes a third way to purchase the series: a Yu
Yu Hakusho "can" with all 28
volumes (112 episodes) on picture label DVDs.
Pre-order date 15 March 2002
Approximately 3,136 minutes
Price 141,120 yen
Comes with 28 clear postcards and 3 booklets
For ordering details (payments by up to 24
instalments can be made) and a picture of the
can, see here.
5 March 2002
- The latest works by M.O.E, Rizerumain
and Koutetsu Tenshi Kurumi pure
(a live action version of the anime) will
commence broadcast on 2-7 April 2002 (depending
on the network). A preview for the anime
Rizerumain can be viewed here,
while one for Koutetsu Tenshi Kurumi pure is here.
Opening themes for the series can also be sampled
- Details for volume 1 of the OVA series Cosplay
Complex have been released:
Release date 25 May 2002
Limited edition version:
Price 6,090 yen (including
Includes 24 page
design works booklet, 2 plates for cosplay
jacket and change
of clothes, picture label and 4 page booklet
Regular edition version:
Price 5,040 (including
Includes 4 page
First pressing of both limited edition and
regular editions will come with a box to hold all
three DVDs in the series.
- The H games Tsuki
Kagerou and flutter
of birds are to be animated.
- A new edition of the 3 x 3 Eyes manga
by Takada Yuzo will be released and
volume 1 will come with a limited edition box
(illustrated by Takada) to hold all 4 volumes of
the new edition. Details for volume 1:
Limited edition of 10,000 units
Release date 25 April 2002
Price 3,980 yen (excluding tax)
Comes with T shirt and postcard set.
Volume 1 will cover the Seima Yogeki story arc.
Volume 2 will be released on the same day and
cover the Seima Densetsu story arc. Volumes 3 and
4 will be released at the end of May 2002 and
cover the Seima Seiki story arc. For pictures of
the box and more details, see here
4 March 2002
Net reports that Bandai is planning
to commence broadband internet distribution of
anime such as Mobile Suit Gundam in
September 2002. A new company "Bandai
Channel" was established on 1 March 2002
with a capital of 10 million yen for this
purpose, with investments by four companies in
the Bandai group: Bandai (55%), anime producer
Sunrise (30%), Bandai Visual (10%) and mobile
phone content provider Bandai Networks (5%). Mr
Matsumoto Satoru, director of Sunrise, will be
the new company's first president. Sunrise has
approximately 180 anime works including Mobile
Suit Gundam (approximately 1,800 hours) to
distribute while Bandai Visual has approximately
370 works. The fee schedule has yet to be
determined. See also this report.
- More news on Shinkai Makoto, creator of the
upcoming Hoshi no Koe anime.
Shinkai directed the opening of the adult love
adventure game Wind -a breath of heart-,
which will be released by game company minori in
April 2002. The opening can be downloaded here,
with a high resolution (approximately 40Mb)
version available here.
Shinkai also directed the opening of the previous
game by minori, Bittersweet Fools,
which opening can be downloaded here.
A "trial set book" of Wind -a breath of
heart- will be released on 4 April 2002 by
Softbank, price 933 yen, with bonus mousepad and
opening movie CD-ROM. The regular edition of the
book will retail on 19 April 2002.
3 March 2002
Animation has previews available for download
of two of its upcoming anime Kasajizou
(5 minute preview) and Munto (5
second preview). Kasajizou is an original work
based on the folk tale of the same name. In the
folk tale, an old man gives bamboo hats (kasa) to
statues of Jizo-sama (the Buddha who protects the
common people). The anime tells the story of
Yahe, his sickly wife Koito and Yahe's father
Sasuke, whose own wife died of illness and who
disapproves of Yahe's marriage to Koito. Munto
tells the fantasy adventure of 14 year old school
student Takahashi Yumemi on floating islands of
land which exist in a parallel dimension above
the Earth. When Munto (in cat form) falls to
Earth, Yumemi's life changes.
2 March 2002
- The official Arcade Gamer Fubuki
website has a table tennis Flash game
Click on the button in the middle of the table to
start, then select your first player (either
Fubuki or Hanako) and click on the middle button
twice again. Defeat both players in the opposing
team and you'll get access to download one of
eight cards in the 3rd series of passion cards.
These cards will be available for one month.
- The Cowboy Bebop CD box set is
scheduled for release on 21 June 2002.
- Toei has announced the release of three movies in
July 2002: Digimon Frontier, Kinnikuman
Nisei (Second Generation) and Gekitou!
Crash Gear Turbo.
- The release of GAiNAX's Mahoromatic
Digital Maiden 2 CD-ROM has been put
back to 19 April 2002.
1 March 2002
- Previews for Patlabor WXIII and eX Driver
the movie can be downloaded here.
- More details on the new Takada Akemi artbook Takada
Akemi Patlabor Gashuu (Art Collection) - now or
never have become available:
Release date 18 March 2002
Price 12,000 yen
192 colour pages of over 150 illustrations, 64
monochrome pages of over 100 drafts and designs,
together with a discussion between Takada and
manga author Yuuki Masami.
The DVD previously reported will only be included
with the first edition of the book. The DVD will
include footage of the creation of the cover
illustration for the artbook and digital gallery
among other things.
- The first pressing of volume 2 of the Kanon
DVD will come with a box for the series. Details:
Release date 5 May 2002
Catalogue number MABP-7002
Price 5,800 yen (excluding tax)
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