1-15 JULY 2003 NEWS

15 July 2003 (third update)

  • Sorry, more to write but I'm just too tired and just too busy. See you in 24 ^_^ One tidbit of info: the Umizaru live action movie (based on the manga by Satou Shuuhou about maritime safety officers) is scheduled for release in the (northern) summer of 2004. Source: Sankei Sports and ultimatum half edition.
  • The 25th Doraemon movie will be released theatrically in March 2004. This will make it the 25th Doraemon movie in 25 years, one every year. Title of this movie will be "Nobita no Wan Nyan Jikuuden" (Nobita's Bow Meow Space-Time Story). Long ago, before humans ruled the earth, there were ancient dog and cat civilisations. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • The duo who brought you the original R.O.D story, that is, the R.O.D manga, Kurata Hideyuki (story) and Yamada Shutaro (art), are back with a new manga. The "hyper Ishin romance" Samuraiji (not sure how to read the katakana) will commence serialisation in issue number 33 of Weekly Shonen Champion magazine, on sale 17 July 2003. This first instalment will contain the first two chapters - a total of 65 pages. Story about samurai in the 21st century. Source: ultimatum half edition. The name's Yamada Shutaro, not Yamada Akitaro.
  • Volume 2 of the Saint Seiya Episode G manga (by Kurumada Masami/Okada Megumu) will be published on 23 October 2003. There'll be a limited first edition available for 933 yen. I think it'll come with postcard set and a case. The regular edition of the manga will be released on the same day. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • Yesterday I wrote about the "Monkey Punch Bijo Gashuu (Beautiful Women Art Collection) Cuties" artbook. Pioneer now has a webpage up for the book. You can click on most of the pics on that page for enlargements. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • It's 15 July 2003 and Mandarake's 2003 Summer Big Auction has started, where otaku around the world bid on items. Of course, with that many people bidding, there's no way I can afford anything, but I can dream ^_^ I could barely afford a reproduction Studio Ghibli cel last year let alone an original one. Some of the items on offer this time around are:
    Marine Boy cel! I remember that old show.
    Anything with Madoka from KOR is generally out of my price range. Eg this large sized Madoka cel, highest bid currently 122,300 yen with 7 days to go.
    Nice large sized Kenshin cel, current highest bid 32,700 yen. No warranty as to the authenticity of the cel, though...
    Hana Yori Dango cel illustration, currently at 76,100 yen.
    Cel of Ayanami Rei from Evangelion, presently at 251,300 yen. Rei fans scare me ^_^;;
    Sailor Saturn cel, only 265,100 yen at present. No warranty. No wonder people steal Sailor Moon cels.
    Of course anything Miyazaki or Studio Ghibli generally commands a high price. This pencil and watercolour pic by Miyazaki Hayao is currently at the 353,600 yen level.
    What I find particularly interesting is the amounts that shikishi (essentially quick pics drawn by artists on square bits of paper) can go for. This Matsumoto Izumi pic of Madoka currently asking 81,300 yen. This Takeuchi Naoko shikishi is at 50,100 yen. Amazingly (at least to me) this simple yet charming Miyazaki Hayao shikishi of Nausicaa has a bid at 500,000 yen! 10 days to go. I wonder what price it'll finally go for...?
  • Volume 2 of the DVD of Tantei Gakuen Q (Detective School Q) will be released on 25 September 2003, price 4,935 yen (including tax). First pressing will come with box. Similarly, volume 5 will be released on Christmas Day, price 4,935 (including tax) and first pressing of that volume will come with a box as well. Source: Animate Yokohama.
  • The Chicchana Yukitsukai Sugar (Sugar: A Little Snow Fairy) Special will be released on DVD on 24 October 2003, price 5,250 yen (including tax) and is planned to come with bath toy. The Animate Yokohama listing includes the statement that this will be a first pressing limited edition item, although it's not clear whether this means that the DVD release will be limited edition or simply whether the details listed are for a limited edition version. Hope that makes sense... The two part special is scheduled for broadcast on 21 and 28 August 2003.
  • Volume 1 of Onegai Twins will be released on DVD on 24 October 2003. As with the DVD release of Onegai Teacher, there'll be a special "Memories Special" version on sale, price 7,875 yen (including tax). I don't know what bonus items it'll come with. The regular edition will cost 5,775 yen (including tax). Source: Animate Yokohama. This series commenced broadcast today.
  • Shinkai Makoto's anime clip for the song "Egao" was created for the NHK music program "Minna no Uta". Now a NHK Minna no Uta Best DVD will be released on 25 September 2003, catalogue number AVBA-14794, price 3,800 yen (excluding tax). The DVD will contain 15 songs. No idea whether it'll include the Egao clip, though. A NHK Minna no Uta Best Song Collection CD will also be released on the same day, catalogue number AVCA-14793, price 2,500 yen (excluding tax). This collection will contain 45 songs. Titles of both the DVD and CD are tentative. Source: Mangaoh Club. I don't know whether it's just one CD or more. If it's 45 songs, I'd assume there'd be more than one CD...

14 July 2003 (second update)

  • I'll leave it at this today. A few things I'll leave until tomorrow.
  • The 12 Kokuki adventure RPG for the Playstation 2 will be released on 28 August 2003, price 6,800 yen. First pressing will come with original postcard. For now, you can download wallpapers from the official website. Source: Moonphase. If you click on one of the thumbnails, a new window will popup with the wallpaper. It won't appear full size, but if you save it, the wallpaper will be safed in full size. Not the most exciting wallpapers I've ever seen, though...
  • ZDNet Japan reports that Pioneer LDC will release an artbook of beautiful women illustrated by Monkey Punch, from series such as Lupin III. This book, titled "Monkey Punch Bijo Gashuu (Beautiful Women Art Collection) Cuties", will contain digitally mastered and restored artwork. Over 120 illustrations of women will be included, such as Lupin III's Fujiko and Siamese Cat's Jun and Naomi. The book will be 128 pages (some colour, some monochrome) and will cost 4,800 yen, but there'll be a limited edition of 3,000 copies. The book is to be released in September 2003, but the official Pioneer LDC website (I presume this page) will commence taking reservations from 26 August 2003. Source: alternative-live.
  • On 24 June 2003 I wrote about the design work for the upcoming live action Cutey Honey movie (to be directed by Anno Hideaki). Latest reports show star Sato Eriko wearing a similar costume to that originally pictured. Furthermore, ZakZak reports that, according to the hype, it's believed this movie will have Japanese cinema's greatest amount of cosplay, with Sato having over 30 thirty transformations: police woman, waitress, motorbike racer etc. That's not counting her pre-transformation role as an OL (office lady). Sankei Sports quotes Sato saying that she's been reading the original work (the manga by Nagai Go) and watching the anime. Also, Anno is quoted as saying "The transformation is one of the higlights. Please look forward to it." Of course, this is an attempt to whet the appetite of fans who are probably hoping that Anno will follow the transformation scene of the anime where Cutey Honey's clothes are ripped off ^_^ Sponichi Annex reports that the sexy transformation scene is expected to incorporate CG. The movie is scheduled for release next year. See the above linked reports for Sato in costume. The blue costume is her in her pre-transformation office lady outfit. The other costume is her transformation outfit. Source: alternative-live. It's funny, almost all the reports in Japanese I've seen about this project have emphasised the fact that popular idol Sato Eriko will be starring, whereas Western fandom's reports focus on the fact that Anno will be directing ^_^
  • More manga release info. Volume 6 of Shiozaki Yuji's Ikki Tousen is out from Wani Books on 25 August 2003, price 900 yen. The anime version commences broadcast on 30 July 2003. Volume 1 of the aizou (treasured) version of Tsubasa by CLAMP, to be released on 9 August 2003, will cost 1,143 yen (excluding tax). Source: Mangaoh Club. For more release details for Tsubasa, see my 27 June 2003 entry.
  • Been shopping for manga online myself ^_^
  • Calendars. Kodansha will release a combined xxxHolic and Tsubasa CLAMP calendar in November 2003, price 2,100 yen (including tax). 13 A3-size pages. A Mahoromatic calendar will be released at the end of November 2003. The Mahoromatic calendar will be a block calendar, but will come with a CD-ROM. Price 2,100 yen (including tax). Source: Animate Yokohama.

13 July 2003

  • There's a third clip to download at the Hokkaido/Mast Co. website for the anime movie Nasu ~ Andulusia no Natsu (Eggplant ~ Andulusian Summer) on this page (thouh it's a shorter clip). Source: Aniota BBS. The movie will be released theatrically in Japan on 26 July 2003.
  • As you can see, I couldn't be bothered yesterday. Busy as well, so not much up today...

12 July 2003

  • A few minor bits later if I can be bothered.
  • gameonline reports that Capcom's game Rockman EXE 4 for the Game Boy Advance will be released in December 2003 and further that more Rockman anime will be coming this (northern) autumn. Source: Ma-ten. My computer crashed in typing up this one paragraph, of course.

11 July 2003 (third update)

  • The official Green Green TV website now states that internet distribution of that series will commence on 1 August 2003. I guess that settles the confusion. For more info, see yesterday's entry. Source: Moonphase.
  • For the petrolhead, there's the J's Tipo AE86 Book Initial D, containing a reprint of the report on the "Hachi-roku" which appeared in J's Tipo magazine, an analysis of the modifications to the "Fujiwara Tofu Shop" AE86 and a drive map of the Mount Akina route with scenic spots. The book comes with a figure/model of the Fujiwara Tofu Trueno. Price 1,429 yen, published by Neko Publishing. Source: ultimatum half edition. I know nothing about cars. They're purely functional for me.
  • Miura Rieko, seiyuu for Yomiko, Yomiko Readman in the OVA R.O.D, plays a popular news accouncer in the live action dorama Tokumei Kakarichou Tadano Hitoshi. The series commenced broadcast on TV Asashi on 4 July 2003. Click on the cast button and Miura is the woman pictured on the furthest right. Source: Aniota.
  • The website for the mecha anime Godannar is finally open. However, after registering the url with the spelling "Godanner", it seems they've decided that the official spelling will be "Goddannar"... Amongst the info on the website, however, is news of a first pressing limited edition Prototype DVD, to be released 26 September 2003, catalogue number THD-12231, price 2,800 yen (excluding tax). The DVD will contain opening clip, pilot film and staff interviews etc. Further, the DVD will come with T-shirt, booklet and sticker. Source: Aniota. This TV anime is set to commence broadcast in October 2003. The manga version (by Seta Noriyasu) will commence serialisation in the October 2003 issue of Dengeki Daioh (on sale 21 August 2003).
  • Back on 8 June 2003, I wrote about Japan Post releasing commemorative sets of stamps on technology and anime heroes and heroines from 1 August 2003. However, the postal authority has now announced that the release of the first series of those stamped will be delayed. Source: Aniota.
  • The vampire web anime Vie Durant will commence internet distribution by animate.tv on 15 July 2003. Details on this related Frontier Works page reveal that it'll be an eight episode series. However, there will be a fee for viewing the anime. Source: Ma-ten.
  • Volume 1 of the new Astroboy TV series will go on sale 3 October 2003. CD Japan has the details in English here. First pressing will come with a trading card.
  • On 9 July 2003, I wrote about the Galaxy Express 999 TV Special DVD Box ~ Toki no Wa no Tabibito ~. Neowing confirms that it'll contain the three specials. However, while Animate Yokohama stated that the DVD box was a first pressing limited edition item, Neowing simply states that the first pressing will come with a 24 page booklet.
  • The cover of the August 2003 issue of the Japanese manga magazine Monthly Sunday Gene-X (on sale 19 July 2003) announces that an anime movie based on the manga Shin Angyo Onshi by Korean duo Youn In-wan and Yang Kyung-il will be produed. The manga is of course serialised in Sunday Gene-X. Source: ultimatum half edition. Youn and Yang would be best known among Western fans as the authors of the manga Island (licensed by Tokyopop), while Yang is also the artist on the manga Zombie Hunter.
  • On 20 and 23 June 2003, I wrote about the October and November 2003 issues of monthly magazine Dengeki Daioh (on sale August and September 2003 respectively) coming with an Onegai Twins figure. Toranoana now has a pic of the Miyafuji Miina figure which will come with the October 2003 issue (on the right hand side, IIRC) and the Onodera Karen figure which'll come with the November 2003 issue (left hand side). Each issue will cost 780 yen.
  • Speaking of Toranoana, I notice one of the doujinshi in their online catalog is Saishuu Heiki Kareshi (or "He, the Ultimate Weapon") ^_^;; Note that this is an adult doujinshi for females and the page linked contains adult images of boys' love.
  • And speaking of SaiKano, I found that to be a disappointing anime. Didn't work for me (except for parts of episode 9). Could've been more, but I guess it faced an initial difficulty of a story about a clumsy schoolgirl who's the ultimate military weapon and then trying to get the viewer to believe that it should be taken seriously. Animation was disappointing at times as well, particularly given that it was done by Gonzo.

10 July 2003 (final update for the day)

  • Still got a few minor things to write about, but I might leave that for the weekend...
  • I previously wrote about R.O.D The TV commencing broadcast on Sky Perfect on 1 September 2003. The official website has now updated with info (eg confirming the cast etc) and it appears that the Sky Perfect broadcast may be an advance broadcast. The official website states that episodes 1 and 2 will be broadcast from 1 to 15 September 2003 while episodes 3 to 4 will be broadcast from 16 to 30 September 2003. It'll be a per-per-view broadcast, I believe. Anyway, commencement date for a terrestial broadcast of the series does not appear to have been announced.
  • Back on 7 May 2003 and 20 June 2003 I wrote about the Bandai Museum, which is to open on 19 July 2003. In the lead-up to the opening, there have been a number of news reports by Impress Corporation, Yahoo Japan and ZDNet Japan. See those reports for pics of the museum - and in respect of the Impress Corporation report, click on the pics for enlargements. Among the information in the latest reports, the life-sized bust of the RX-78-2 Gundam will be 5.6 metres tall (an early press release from Bandai said it'd be 8 metres). The approximately 2 metre long head moves and you can stand in the palm of the Gundam and have your picture taken. At the cafe, you can sample cocktails such as the "Red Comet" using a coaster designed by mecha designer Ogawara Kunio. There'll be shrine complete with shrine maidens, where rites will be performed four times a year for toys ^_^;;; Closing time for the museum is now stated to be 6.30pm rather than the previously reported 7pm (although certain sections like the cafe and store will still remain open until 11pm). Bandai is hoping for attendance figures of 700,000 within the first year. For more info, see my previous posts on the topic. Source: Aniota and Moonphase.
  • Updated the Green Green news.
  • Sunrise has a website up for the Gundam Evolve series of CG works. You can view a streaming ad for the Evolve + DVD. I think you'll need to pay or the screensaver or wallpaper, though. Source: Aniota. For more info on the Evolve + DVD, see my 10 June 2003 entry.
  • A new report reveals that in Australia there is one gun for every nine people. This is better than the US average of a gun for every person, but worse than the global average of a gun for every 16 people.
  • The Green Green TV series commences broadcast on 12 July 2003. As I previously wrote, internet distribution of this series was also under consideration. ZDNet Japan now reports that this series will indeed be distributed over the internet from 12 July 2003 to 30 November 2003, but on a fee paying basis: 200 yen to view one episode for one week (and in August 600 yen for three episodes for two weeks). Source: Aniota. On the other hand, Impress Corporation reports that distribution of the series itself will only commence on 1 August 2003 and that what will be available from 12 July 2003 will be a promotional special. Source: Moonphase.
  • Victor Entertainment's Sakamoto Maaya page has updated with news that her fourth album will be released in December 2003. Further, the short movie that she'll star in, titled "03+" (I think that's supposed to be a superscript cross, rather than a plus sign...), will also go on sale in December 2003. Source: Reinbo Actress.
  • MBS has a website up for Hagane no Renkinjutsushi (Full Metal Alchemist) as well now. However, there won't really be anything to see there until 12 August 2003. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • The official website for the TV anime of Planetes, based on the manga by Yukimura Makoto) is now open. This is planned to be a 26 episode series, to commence broadcast in October 2003. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • Sponichi Osaka reports that the TV anime of Massugu ni Ikou (Let's Go Straight) will commence broadcast on 18 August 2003, but with an unusual schedule that will see it broadcast for four consecutive days. Source: TA Group BBS.

9 July 2003 (last update for the day)

  • If I have time, I'll go back and add links to all the anime etc that I've written about today...
  • The Neko no Ongaeshi/Ghiblies episode 2 DVD comes out at number 1 in the Oricon weekly ranking for DVD sales. Source: Aniota BBS. The DVD first went on sale on 4 July 2003. Animatrix is number 15 and Gundam Seed volume 4 is number 17.
  • Bandai has new Heat Guy J website up, with a 7 minute 24 second clip for streaming download. Just click on the "Play" graphic when you get to the main page.
  • Back on 9 May 2003, I wrote about the Playstation 2 game based on Wandaba Style. As reported, the game will come with an original anime DVD. Now you can download a preview of the OVA from the official game website. Just click on the first "Get! Movie" graphic. You can download an ad for the game itself by clicking on the second such graphic. Note that the files are compressed as .lzh files. If you can't de-compress the files, see my 12 May 2002 entry regarding viewing URDA. For a bit more info on the game, see my 9 May 2003 entry.,
  • Wonderfarm apologises for the delay in the release of volumes 2 and 3 of Hand Maid Mai. Looks like its a distribution problem rather than a production problem. Source: Moonphase.
  • Sony's website for the TV anime Hagane no Renkinjutsushi (Full Metal Alchemist) is now open. Source: Moonphase. Broadcast commences 4 October 2003. Square-Enix also has a webpage up, primarily for the manga.
  • I thought I'd mentioned this before but the Chrono Crusade anime will commence broadcast in October 2003.
  • From the various anime magazines out this month, Moonphase reports the following:

    The anime Chou Hoshigami Granseizer (not sure about the "Hoshigami" part) will commence broadcast on TV Tokyo in October 2003. Fighting anime.

    Marvelous Entertainment Inc. will put DVDs of the anime version of the game Kidou Shinsen Gumi Moeyoken on sale this (northern) autumn.

    A package titled .hack//Integration will go on sale on 24 October 2003 containing episode 28 of .hack//Sign, the four episodes of .hack//Liminality and a sound drama for .hack//Tasogare no Udewa Densetsu.

    Gilgamesh (based on the work of Ishinomori Shotaro) will commence broadcast in October 2003 and the official website is now up. About superpowered siblings on a ruined world.

    Avenger, the story of a female fighter and a robot, will commence broadcast in the (northern) autumn.

    Bandai will release an OVA sequel to Stratos 4 in the (northern) spring of 2004. Two volumes, tentatively titled "Stratos 4 X-1" and "Stratos 4 X-2". There's also the suggestion that this OVA series may not be the end of the story. But does this mean more anime? Or perhaps a manga...? There's already a novelisation.

    A TV anime version of the adult game Yami to Boushi to Hon no Tabibito will commence broadcast in October 2003. A manga is also in the works.

    As to the Moeyoken news, originally I heard it was going to be an OVA, then the movie clip on the Marvelous Entertainment website suggested it would going to be broadcast on TV, now there's talk of DVD sales again. Perhaps OVA with TV broadcast...?
  • Bandai has announced an "Emotion Family Club" points system for its DVDs which go on sale from 26 September 2003. Join the club over the internet (no fee), buy Bandai DVDs, register the serial number for those DVDs over the internet for points and trade the points in for original goods. Member registration starts 1 September 2003, and if you register by 23 September 2003 you'll get 100 bonus points. I have no idea whether they'll accept overseas members though...
  • And you thought Happosai was just some weird character created by Takahashi Rumiko. Under a headline starting with the words "Hentai Freeter...", ZakZak reports that police in Ishikawa prefecture arrested freeter Nagano Hiroyuki (24 years old) on 7 July 2003 on suspicion of stealing girls' swimwear from a primary school and later found and confiscated approximately 210 swimsuits and approximately 820 pairs of underwear in his car. Nagano has made a statement saying that from the (northern) summer of 2000 he stole the items for fun from laundromats, clotheslines in homes, primary schools etc. See the article for a pic of the confiscated swimwear. Source: Aniota. Actually, when I was travelling in Japan a few years ago, I met a law student who said she'd had some underwear stolen off the clothesline while she was in Hamamatsu...
  • The DVD for the live action dorama series Doubutsu no Oisha-san (Animal Doctor) based on the manga by Sasaki Noriko will go on sale on 16 October 2003. I'm presuming this will be a DVD box set, rather than a release of several individual volumes.
  • The release of the .hack//Tasogare no Udewa Densetsu Rena Special Pack has been put back from 1 July 2003 to 6 August 2003. Source: Toranoana. For more details, see my 4 March 2003 entry.
  • No! I found more stuff today that I must buy >_< Put in my order for the Tenjou Tenge calendar as well \^_^/ My order at Toranoana has shipped \^_^/ They don't ship outside Japan, but a friend in Tokyo has agreed to accept delivery on my behalf \^_^/
  • Watched my Blame! Ver.0.11: Salvaged disc by Cibo DVD today. Interesting visually, I thought. DVD menu was interesting as well, though I could see it getting frustrating...
  • Despite all the announcements of anime and manga being licensed, I haven't heard of any Iwahara Yuji manga being licensed yet. Why not? Anyway, I finally tried my scanner, so here's two scans of three pages of his manga Chikyu Misaki. Makishima Misaki (your stereotypical transfer student) and her father move to her deceased's mother's home town. There, she meets a Loch Ness type monster which, when kissed, turns into a boy (she names him Neo - after the Matrix movie). In the scene I've scanned, Misaki and new friend Sanae try to toilet-train Neo. Remember, this manga is unflipped, so read right to left, top to bottom. Yeah, the scanning and my editing is crap, but I don't care ^_^ No, I'm not going to make scanlations of whole manga. I'm not really comfortable with the concept... Much prefer translations to encourage reader to have a validly purchased volume of the manga. Don't know how long I'll host the pics on my site. I may take them down at any time.
  • I note ADV Films has licensed the Gunslinger Girl manga by Aida Yu. Volume 2 was published just at the end of June 2003. Did anyone at AX ask about the anime...? That's to be broadcast in the (northern) autumn.
  • Headache yesterday.
  • Volume 1 of the DVD release for Ashita no Nadja will go on sale on 18 September 2003, price 2,625 yen (including tax). First pressing will come with music CD and postcard. Source: Animate Yokohama.
  • Yankumi, thanks again! You know why ^_^
  • Bouken Yuuki Pluster World will commence its DVD release on 18 September 2003. Volume 1 will cost 1,890 yen (including tax). First pressing will come with box, figure and special card. Source: Animate Yokohama. IIRC, it was recently announced at Anime Expo that this series was licensed.
  • IIRC, the Ninja Scroll TV series will come out on DVD in the US before Japan. Volume 1 comes out in Japan on 24 October 2003.
  • The six Galaxy Express 999 DVD box sets are now on sale (well, volume 6 will be released on 24 July 2003). But wait, there's more! The Galaxy Express 999 TV Special DVD Box ~ Toki no Wa no Tabibito ~ will be released on 18 September 2003, price 15,540 yen (including tax). This will be a first pressing limited edition item. Source: Animate Yokohama. There were three TV specials made, right? Presumably this DVD box contains all three.
  • Volume 1 of the Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-ohki 3rd OVA series will be released on 18 September 2003. Previously I wrote that Mangaoh Club stated that the series will be released in three month intervals. However, Animate Yokohama suggests that they'll come out in two month intervals. It's got volume 2 listed as being released on 21 November 2003 and volume 3 on 21 January 2003, volume 4 on 24 March 2003, volume 5 on 21 May 2003 and volume 6 on 21 July 2003. Each of those volumes is stated to cost 5040 yen (including tax). Furthermore, volume 1 of the OST will be released on 22 October 2003, price 2,100 yen (including tax). Volume 2 will cost the same, but the release date is not yet known.
  • Volume 6 of the manga Hagane no Renkinjutsushi (Full Metal Alchemist) by Arakawa Hiromu will be published on 22 October 2003. A limited first edition will come with a mini-book titled "Honoo no Renkinjutsushi". Price 599 yen. Source: Animate Yokohama. The TV series based on this manga will air on 4 October 2003.

7 July 2003 (last update for the day)

  • The anime version of the manga Hagane no Renkinjutsushi (Full Metal Alchemist) (by Arakawa Hiromu) will be produced by Bones. I know there are a fair few Bones fans out there. Moonphase gives http://www.aniplex.co.jp/hagaren/ as the URL for the anime (Aniplex being a Sony label), but I basically get a 404 error. The anime will commence broadcast on 4 October 2003.
  • Two anime in the planning stages are Avenger, to be produced by Bee Train (Noir) and Gilgamesh, based on the work of Ishinomori Shotaro, to be produced by Japan Vistec. Source: Moonphase.
  • The anime version of the sci-fi manga Planetes (by Yukimura Makoto, licensed by Tokyopop) is scheduled for broadcast from October 2003. Character designer will be Chiba Yuriko, who did character designs for the under-rated Figure 17. The anime will be produced by Sunrise. Source: Moonphase. Moonphase also gives this URL for the series: http://www.planet-es.net/ but I can't get that to work either...
  • The official website for the OVA Makasete Iruka! has a very tentative opening theme song available for download. You'll find it on the production notes page, 7 July 2003 entry (the link just above the RealPlayer graphic). Source: Moonphase. This Daichi Akitaroh anime is scheduled for release in the (northern) summer of 2003.
  • According to this week's announcement regarding the Jump Festa Anime Tour '03, this year original anime of Naruto (the well known ninja manga) and Eyeshield 21 (American football manga by Inagaki Riichiro and by Murata Yusuke) will be screened, starting with the Sendai convention on 20 September 2003. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • The TV anime D.C. ~ Da Capo ~ just started broadcast over the past couple of days. You can download a TV ad for the series at the official website. Just look at the bottom right hand portion of the main screen, where'll be able to select between various streaming speeds etc. Source: Moonphase. This anime also features a short anime each episode, the short anime being created by a different anime company to main series.
  • It's stated on the official Jubei Ninpucho TV website that volume 1 of the DVD release will go on sale on 24 October 2003. Source: Aniota.
  • And it's stated on the official Sumeba Miyako no Cosmos Sou - Suttoko Taisen Dokkaida website that volume 1 of that DVD release will go on sale on 25 October 2003. Source: Moonphase.
  • Impress Corporation reports that IO Data is producing USB flash memory "Gundam EasyDisks" (with a capacity of 32Mb) from August 2003. For Windows 98/Me/2000/XP operating systems, Mac OS 9.0-9.2 and Mac X 10.1-10.2. Price is expected to be in the region of 3,980 yen. See the above report for the six different designs available. Source: alternative-live. I don't know anything about computers. I have no idea what a flash memory easydisk is...
  • The YTV website states that the anime Massugu ni Ikou (Let's Go Straight) will commence broadcast in August 2003. Source: TA Group BBS.
  • Somewhere along the line I got the dates mixed up... ^_^;;
  • Reinbo Actress states that R.O.D The TV will commence broadcast on Sky Perfect TV on 1 September 2003. Cast will include Saitou Chiwa as youngest sister Anita, Hirata Hiromi as Maggie, Kikuchi Shoko as the eldest Michelle and Yukino Satsuki as Sumiregawa Nenene.
  • Won't post much today either. Spent most of my time online trying to buy stuff. If all works out, I'll have found another way to squander my savings on anime/manga-related items \^_^/
  • Got a number of minor items I may write about, but I'll leave those till I have more time (ie another day). With any luck, some other site will post the news so I don't have to ^_^
  • Work on Urushihara Satoshi's adult OVA Front Innocent (where he'll make his directorial debut) continues. The latest update to his Earthwork website (which he shares with Yoshimoto Kinji and Kimura Yoshihiro) states that production is underway on a promotional film for the anime. Further, Moonphase reports that the anime is slated for release in the (northern) spring of 2004. I'm not certain, but I'm guessing that info comes from a magazine like Paletta... For more info on the anime, see my 25 August 2002 entry.

6 July 2003

  • Probably won't post much today. Hoping to get a full night's sleep tonight. Haven't slept more than three hours each night for the past few nights... -_- Also, want to shop online for a few things ^_^
  • The official Sailor Moon website has a Sailor Moon Live Action Version Corner up now, where information about the October TV series will be posted. Source: Ma-ten. However, there's nothing really to see at present.

5 July 2003 (early update)

  • TV Tokyo has a preview clip up for the anime Takahashi Rumiko Gekijo (Theatre). Source: Moonphase. The series commences broadcast today.
  • In late June 2003, Marvelous Entertainment Inc. announced that the anime version of the game Kidou Shinsen Gumi Moeken would be broadcast on CS. (See my 25 June 2003 entry on that issue). However, the preview for the August 2003 issue of Animedia magazine (on sale 10 July 2003) states that the issue will have info on the series, but under the OVA section. So will this be an OVA but with an advance broadcast on TV (eg in the same vein as the advance broadcast of Rurouni Kenshin Seisou Hen before the DVD release)? Source: Moonphase.
  • NTT Publishing's eg game site reports that Bandai's Playstation 2 game RahXephon Soukyuu Gensoukyoku will be released on 7 August 2003. This will be a DVD-ROM action and adventure game, created with the input of the staff from the anime series, containing more than 20 minutes of new animation. Furthermore, there'll be a special package available, which I think will be called "RahXephon Soukyuu Gensoukyoku Plusculus". This special package will come with design works booklet ("The World of Soukyuu Gensoukyoku") and bonus DVD. The bonus DVD will contain a new side story anime "Kanojo to Kanojo Jishin to" (She and She Herself) by the same creative staff which made the TV series and movie. Price 7,980 yen (excluding tax). The regular edition of the game (minus bonus DVD and design works) will be available for 6,800 yen (excluding tax). Source: Moonphase. Since there's only about a 1,000 yen difference (excluding tax ^_^ ) between the special package and the regular edition, I wouldn't expect this gaiden anime to be particularly long...

4 July 2003 (third update)

  • Updated the Saiyuki news.
  • The live action baseball movie Jigoku Koushien (Battlefield Stadium), based on the manga of the same name by Man*Gatarou, will commence screening on 19 July 2003. You can view a trailer here. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • The animate.tv website has updated with a preview of the Happy Lesson Advance anime. You'll see two blue buttons with green triangles in the bottom right hand corner of the page. Click on the left hand one if you have a narrow band internet connection, on the right hand one if you have a broadband connection. Source: Magicalantique.com. The series commenced broadcast in Osaka yesterday.
  • Kids Station's website for the upcoming anime D.C. ~ Da Capo ~ is now up. Source: Reinbo Actress. That series commences broadcast on Kids Station on 7 July 2003, but TV Kanagawa will have it first on 5 July 2003.
  • First pressing of volume 8 of Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch will come with a box (presumably to hold the second half of the series). To be released March 2004, price 3,045 yen (including tax). Source: Animate Yokohama. For release details for the series, see my 12 June 2003. First pressing of volume 1, to be released 20 August 2003, will come with a box to hold seven volumes.
  • Genso Maden Saiyuki is being re-released at a price of 5,985 yen (including tax) per volume:
    Volumes 1-3 to be released 26 September 2003
    Volumes 4-6 to be released 24 October 2003
    Volumes 7-8 to be released 21 November 2003
    Source: Animate Yokohama. Don't have further details at present, but if there only going to be eight volumes, then I'm guessing that each volume would have approximately twice the number of episodes of the original release. Update: animate.tv confirms that the original 17 volume DVD release has been converted into an 8 volume release, with approximately twice the number of episodes on each volume. Rather than cramming more episodes onto a DVD, the re-release is basically a repackaging of 17 DVDs - volume 1 of the re-release will be a 3 DVD digipak (presumably containing the first three DVDs of the original release) and all subsequent volumes of the re-release will be 2 DVD digipaks. Hope that makes sense. So this effectively means the price is now slightly below 50% of the original cost of the series. This re-release will be in production for one year only.
  • I was going to type this up earlier, but Animaxis.com now has an English language article up on the unauthorised sale of Hirokane Kenshi's manga manuscripts, so it saves me the trouble ^_^
  • Probably not news, but I note that recent DVD releases by Bandai include a preview for the upcoming movie Steamboy. The preview is a bit out of date to the extent that it still refers to theatrical release this October, but it's interesting nonetheless (and DVD quality).
  • Got my copy of Shinkai Makoto's Egao DVD. Cute. The "making of" video was particularly interesting.

3 July 2003

  • Way too busy with work. Try again tomorrow. I'll post something up then if I'm not overcome with sleep deprivation.

2 July 2003 (fourth update)

  • I'll leave it at that for now. A few minor things which I'll type up over the next few days or so when I find the time...
  • The Triangle Heart ~ Sweet Songs Forever ~ official website has updated with an opening movie available for download (26Mb). This clip is included with volume 1 of the DVD release. Source: Moonphase. For release details, see my 30 May 2003 entry.
  • NHK's website for 12 Kokuki states that episode 1 of the new series will commence broadcast on 5 July 2003. Source: Moonphase.
  • Pachinko game with a High School Kimen Gumi theme. High School Kimen Gumi is a manga by Shinzawa Motoei (later made into an anime). Source: Aniota.
  • Nikkei Net reports that Yahoo plans to distribute short original anime free over the internet. This will be in collaboration with Osaka-based Contents Japan, which will produce the anime in partnership with Sunrise. Looks like it'll be a horror anime with the characters speaking in English (but Japanese subtitles), each episode being approximately 5 minutes 30 seconds long. Yahoo expects to profit from the free distribution via the advertising which will be coupled with the anime. Test distribution commenced yesterday, with formal distribution to commence in the (northern) autumn. Source: Ma-ten.
  • I guess that Yahoo anime would be Trip Trek, where you can download four episodes. A horror anime, but aimed at primary school children, so not scary in any real sense. There are also a game and greeting cards available on the site. See also this site, where the same episodes are also available. Source: Aniota.
  • Sankei Web reports that Toho today announced that advance ticket sales of the latest (sixth) Pokemon movie had broken through the one million level since going on sale at the end of April 2003. This is presumably because of the fact that advance tickets came with data for a new Pokemon "Jirachi" for the Game Boy Advance Pokemon game. Jirachi makes its appearance in the new Pokemon movie. Of course, the company knows it's on a good thing and plans to continue such promotions in future. Source: Ma-ten. The movie will hit cinemas on 19 July 2003. For a bit more info, see my 30 April 2003 entry.
  • TMS Entertainment has a website up for the upcoming TV anime of Takahashi Rumiko Gekijo (Theatre). Not much to see, though. Source: alternative-live.
  • The official website for Onegai Twins has updated with a trailer for the TV anime which commences broadcast on 15 July 2003. Source: ultimatum half edition. Click on the left hand black "screen" (ie the one with a pic of Miina) if you have a broadband connection. Click on the right hand one if you have a dialup connection. Moonphase states that this is the same trailer which was on the Animage DVD.
  • Shueisha has a list of next year's calendars up. The most important one of course is the Tenjou Tenge 2004 wall calendar, to be released 4 November 2003, price 2,000 yen, ISBN 4-08-905383-8. Preorder cutoff date is 22 September 2003. Size A3, seven pages. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • Headache yesterday. Enough said.
  • For those waiting for details of the Haibane Renmei artbook (you know who you are), rest assured that I'm still looking out for the same details myself. No further news yet. Perhaps Kadokawa Shoten has decided to delay the release...?
  • Teikoku Databank Ltd reports that on 30 June 2003, video and movie producer Groove Corporation, with debts of five thousand million yen, applied to the District Court of Nagoya for protection under the Civil Rehabilitation Law (that is, for protection against creditors). Among the company's stable of anime works are the TV anime Scrapped Princess and the new OVA Hitsuji no Uta. Source: Tentative Name.
  • Pic of the Ai figure which will come with the first pressing limited edition version of volume 1 of Po Po Tan. For release details, see my 10 June 2003 entry. There'll be six volumes in this DVD release. Source: Mangaoh Club. The TV series commences broadcast on 17 July 2003.
  • The official website for the Skyhigh live action movie (based on the manga of the same name by Takahashi Tsutomu) is now up. The movie is scheduled for release in cinemas in Japan on 8 November 2003. For a bit of related info, see my 18 June 2003 entry.
  • A bit of Mizuho-sensei (from Onegai Teacher) cosplay. Source: Tentative Name.


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