1-15 AUGUST 2003 NEWS

15 August 2003 (third update)

  • Animaxis.com has an English language article about a Japanese government plan to give financial aid to prospective anime projects. The Japanese government has been aware of the international popularity of anime for some time. This is not the first initiative to promote the industry. In the past, workgroups have been set up to investigate the production and marketing of anime, character goods etc.
  • Yomiuri Online reports on otaku artist Murakami Takashi's project of a Buddha-like statue which will be exhibited at New York's Rockefeller Centre from 9 September 2003 to 12 October 2003. You can see a pic of the 7 metre tall seated pop version of a Buddha in the report linked above. The statue is made of reinforced plastic and is painted with approximately 700 colours. Placed around the main statue are the Four Devas, each about 2 metres tall. Source: Aniota.
  • Not sure if you can secure that place with Studio Ghibli? In the careers section of Yahoo Japan, Ashi Production - maker of anime such as Mahou no Princess Minky Momo and now part of the Bandai group - is looking for a full time employee for their business planning. Duties include planning of original works, production management, management of character copyrights and negotiating with toy makers, TV stations, advertising agencies, record companies and publishers. Education isn't relevant but they're looking for ages 23-38, with two or more years' business experience and a command of English to conduct international negotiations. Among other things, they of course want someone with an interest in anime and movies. Annual salary will be a minimum 2.04 million yen (approximately US$17,000) but it's stated that up to 10 million yen (approximately US$84,000) or more is not unattainable as a producer. Source: Aniota. Sounds like a lot of hard work to me...
  • Those who purchase all seven volumes of the Dear Boys TV series DVD release from Animate can get an original DVD.
  • Those who purchase all 13 DVD volumes of Last Exile will be able to apply for a bonus item. I don't know what the item will be, though. Source: Animate.
  • It's planned that those who purchase all four volumes of the Hitsuji no Uta OVA series will be able to apply for a bonus item, the details of which I don't know. Source: Animate.
  • Back on 22 May 2003, I wrote about the DVD release for Kikou Sennyo Rouran: individual volumes as well as a DVD box set. CD Japan states that the DVD box set will come with a bonus DVD. See its listing for more info.
  • Volume 11 of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex will be released on 24 October 2003, price 6,000 yen. First pressing will come with original character ID card (as usual) but also box to hold three volumes and ID card holder. Source: Animate. Still no reference on Japanese sites to GiTS:SAC being extended to 52 episodes. Animate states that the DVD release will be 13 volumes, Bandai's website for the series just today posted up a post-recording report for the "final" (26th) episode, etc.
  • Today is the first day of Comiket 64 (15 - 17 August 2003), and since I get much of my news from Japanese fan sites, and since most of those fans are probably at Comiket, I don't know if there's going to be much updating of fan sites today or over this weekend. Typically Saturdays are pretty quiet anyway. Still, I'll post up a few minor bits and a bit of retail info that I haven't gotten around to doing previously.
  • A 95 second preview of the Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-ohki 3rd OVA series is up at the official website. Source: Moonphase. Volume 1 of the six volume series will be released on 18 September 2003. For more release details, see my 16 and 24 June 2003 and 9 July 2003 entries. Sorry, can't be bothered consolidating all the info :P
  • One thing I don't think I mentioned before, however, is that if you purchase all the six volumes of the Tenchi Muyo! 3rd OVA DVD release and the two CDs of the soundtrack release, you'll be able to apply for certain Tenchi Muyo goods (details of which have yet to be announced). Source: Animate Yokohama. For release details for the first OST, see my 9 July 2003 entry.

14 August 2003

  • Maybe a few minor things later.
  • ZakZak reports on a group of junior high school thieves who imitated a scene from the GTO manga by applying adhesive tape to a window pane before breaking it. The Juvenile Division of the Osaka Police took eleven 13-15 year old boys into custody on suspicion of theft and related offences and arrested six of them. The youths are alleged to have broken a window to gain entry to an apartment, then trespassed and stolen a cash card. In the manga, to help a student return home late, a teacher applies tape over a window pane before breaking it to avoid making noise that will alert the student's parents. (Sounds to me like Onizuka helping Yoshikawa in Lesson 14, volume 2 ^_^;; ) In reality, however, there was a loud sound when the youths broke the window. Source: Ma-ten. Yomiuri Online provides a few more details on the youths and reports on other crimes which they are alleged to have committed, stealing a notebook computer etc. Source: Aniota.
  • Ditama Bow fansite mahoro.vesper.com states that Ditama will not be working on the new GAiNAX anime Kono Miniku mo Utsukushii Sekai (This Ugly and Beautiful World). Source: alternative-live. I've now corrected my 10 August 2003 entry.
  • Volume 1 of the Happy Lesson Advance Complete Edition DVD release will be out on 24 October 2003. There'll be a limited edition version and a regular edition. The limited edition version will come with character box character book, CD-ROM, character sticker and character card, all for 8,190 yen (including tax). The regular edition will come with character sticker and character card for 2,940 yen (including tax). Source: Animate Web Mail Order (which I previously referred to as Animate Yokohama before they renewed their website). Web Newtype.com has previously reported that the DVD release will contain new scenes. I hate the new catalogue for Animate - so much harder to browse for additions to the catalogue... >_< (Update 28 August 2003: Paper Moon states the character book will be 148 pages, and will feature Ichimonji Mutsuki. It'll contain illustrations, character introduction, interview, staff comments, other cast members' comments on Mutsuki, serialised novel by Yoshioka Takao, storyboards for episode 1, script for episode 1, etc. Volume 1 of the DVD will contain only episode 1, and the new scene in this complete edition DVD will involve Minaduki.)

13 August 2003 (third update)

  • Maybe more later. Got a stomach ache. Gotta lie down...
  • Paper Moon has more details on the upcoming Stratos 4 Special Fan Disc. Back on 31 July 2003, I wrote that it would come with a figure and box. I was hoping that the box packaging would hold all the DVDs in the series, but the ZDNet Japan didn't make it clear. Anyway, the Paper Moon listing states that the figure will be of Mikaze (in a pressure suit) and the box will hold eight discs \^_^/ : the five volumes of the TV anime, the Special Fan Disc and the two OVA volumes Stratos 4 X-1 and Stratos 4 X-2 to be released in the (northern) spring of 2004. Source: Moonphase. To consolidate the details from my previous writings, this Special Fan Disc will be released on 21 December 2003, catalogue number BCBA-1788, price 5,800 yen. The Special Fan Disc will contain travelogue of the staff and cast at Shimoji island, where the story is set, highlight scenes from the 13 TV episodes, etc.
  • Paper Moon also has more details on the upcoming Jungle wa Itsumo Hare nochi Guu Final OVA series. As with the previous OVA series, each volume will contain two short stories. To consolidate the details from my previous post, volume 1 will be released on 21 December 2003, catalogue number BCBA-1750, price 3,800 yen. First pressing will come with a Guu bottlecap. Seven volumes are planned with one volume being released each month.
  • Moonphase states that the Gungrave TV anime is set to commence broadcast on 6 October 2003.
  • Shirow Masamune's 2004 calendar will be titled Japanesque and will be released in mid-October 2003 by Seishinsha. Price 1,800 (excluding tax). It'll be B4 size (ie same size as the Intron Depot books) and contain 13 full colour illustrations. This time the motif will be Japanese traditions and stories. Plus bishoujo, of course. Source: Comic Toranoana.
  • The Last Exile website has updated with an interactive Flash 3D model and specs of Claus' vanship. Unfortunately, I don't think it's the sort of file you can save onto your computer to play with later. You have to be registered as a member of the website, but that's free. To register, click on the Member's Entry button. Then type in your (nick)name (at least 4 characters), password, email address and select your birthdate (year, month, day) and gender (it defaults on male). Finally, click the left hand button. You'll be sent a confirmation email. Then, when you want to access any of the members only sections of the website, just type in your name and password on the screen that appears and click on left hand button. To access the 3D vanship, click on the Mechanic* button. Hold down your mouse button and drag the mouse to rotate the ship. Press shift as well to move the ship. Source: Ma-ten. Other stuff you can download in the members only sections include movies of staff and cast interviews (Staff/Cast section), glossary - in Japanese - of terms used in the Last Exile world (Words section) and wallpapers (Download section).
  • Sorry, fell asleep yesterday before I could update -_-
  • Another (fifth) One Piece movie is to be produced. It'll be released theatrically in March 2004. For now, you can view a trailer on Toei's webpage here, in either Real or Windows Media formats. Just scroll to the bottom of the page. Of the two bottom links, the top one is Real format, the bottom one is Windows Media. Source: Ma-ten.
  • The official website for the live action movie of Tetsujin 28-go (Gigantor) is now open. Source: Ma-ten. The movie is to be released theatrically next year. For more info, see my 24 May 2003 entry.
  • A One Piece 7 Nin no Mugiwara Kaizoku Dan CD will be released on 29 October 2003, price 2,500 yen. This will be the second CD by the Mugiwara Kaizoku Dan seiyuu group. It'll be a first pressing limited edition item and will come with a set of seven mini-figures. Source: Musicmarket.
  • Shueisha's website for Ozawa Mari's shoujo manga Nikoniko Nikki turned live action dorama series is now up. The TV dorama will commence broadcast on 18 August 2003. The manga is serialised in monthly manga magazine Chorus. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • TV Tokyo's website for Saiyuki Reload is now up, though there's not much to see at present. The TV anime will commence broadcast on 2 October 2003. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • The website for the Playstation 2 12 Kokki/12 Kokuki adventure RPG has updated with a demo movie for download. The site has also updated with wallpapers for download. Source: ultimatum half edition. As I previously wrote, the game will be released on 28 August 2003, price 6,800 yen and first pressing will come with original postcard.
  • NHK's website for the TV anime series Planetes is now open. Not much to see, but it does state that the anime will commence broadcast on 4 October 2003 on BS2. Source: alternative-live. Based on the manga by Yukimura Makoto.

11 August 2003 (fourth update)

  • A few minor bits, but I'm too tired. Maybe tomorrow.
  • A second preview for the upcoming shoujo anime Massugu ni Ikou (Let's Go Straight) is now up at the official website. Source: Moonphase. Select from either narrowband or broadband by clicking on the appropriate button in the top right hand corner of the homepage. The series will be broadcast over four days commencing 18 August 2003.
  • Magical bishoujo comedy Maburaho is to commence broadcast on 14 October 2003. Source: Moonphase.
  • Shibata Ami has confirmed on her webpage that a TV anime based on her manga Papuwa (serialised in Monthly Shonen Gangan) is to be broadcast, commencing 30 September 2003 on TV Tokyo. Source: Moonphase.
  • The Moonrock website has a page up for Urushihara Satoshi's upcoming adult OVA Front Innocent. Not much to see at present, but being an adult OVA, please note that the above link for the OVA has nudity. The OVA is tenatively set down for sale in the (northern) spring of 2004. Source: Moonphase.
  • It's been announced on the TV Tokyo website for Naruto, that a Naruto movie is to be released theatrically across Japan in August 2004. Source: Moonphase.
  • The role of Tuxedo Mask in the upcoming live action Pretty Guardian Sailormoon TV series will be played by Shibue Jyoji. Source: Aniota BBS.
  • The official website for the upcoming Jubei-chan 2 Siberia Yagyu no Gyakushuu (Siberia Yagyu's Counterattack) anime is now up. Source: TA Group BBS. To be produced by Madhouse, also makers of the upcoming Tenjou Tenge anime :)
  • Didn't add more yesterday, because, well, I couldn't be bothered :P
  • Got a thirst for doujinshi? Now Comic Toranoana can quench your thirst not only metaphorically but also in reality: the Toracan soft drink. Previously given away free with purchases at their various outlets to celebrate the ninth anniversary of Toranoana, now you can buy a case of Toracan (24 cans) for 2,800 yen (including tax). Or least you could if you lived in Japan (they don't ship outside Japan). IIRC, on the side of the can is also a short manga.
  • I note that Amazon Japan is sort of taking pre-orders for Oshii Mamoru's upcoming movie Innocence. Sort of. They say there's no news of the sale of any DVD yet, but you can give them your email address and if and when the DVD is announced, they'll email you.
  • R.O.D - The TV - will commence broadcast in October 2003, with the preview pay-per-view broadcast during September 2003. Volume 1 of the DVD will be released at the end of October 2003. This must be one of the shortest time lags I can recall between broadcast of a TV anime and DVD release. The series has been licensed by Pioneer in the US, IIRC.

10 August 2003 (third early update)

  • BIG NEWS - TENJOU TENGE ANIME IN THE WORKS. That's what's apparently come out of the Madhouse panel at Otakon. The report on Anime on DVD says "a Shueisha work called Tenjou Tenyei". I presume that means TenTen.
  • As previously reported, volume 1 of Onegai Twins will be released on DVD on 24 October 2003. I've now got more details. The first volume will contain two episodes, the disc will be picture-labelled and it'll come with a "photo" illustrated by Uon Taraku (who did the draft character designs). Similarly to the Onegai Teacher 1st Mail Memories Special release, the limited edition "Memories Special" version of Onegai Twins, price 7,875 yen (including tax), will come with a box to hold all the volumes, Onegai Twins Sound Collection (1) (presumably a CD), CD liner notes and "Memories Album" to store the "photo" (presumably similar "photos" will be included in later volumes). The regular edition will cost 5,775 yen (including tax). Source: Mangaoh Club.
  • Volume 1 of Sumeba Miyako no Cosmos Sou - Suttoko Taisen Dokkaida will be released on 25 October 2003, price 5,800 yen (excluding tax). It'll contain two episodes and come with an original booklet. Furthermore, first pressing will come with box to hold volumes 1 to 3. Source: Chara-Ani.com.
  • A special issue of Monthly Shonen Ace magazine will be published on 29 August 2003: "Eva Ace". It'll contain 94 pages of the Neon Genesis Evangelion manga featuring Kaworu's introduction and Asuka's mind pollution, illustrations from Yoshizaki Mine (Keroro Gunso, known in the West as Sgt Frog, IIRC), Obata Takeshi (Hikaru no Go) and others. It'll also come with large Ayanami Rei "stand panel" (which I presume means some 2D figure of Rei) and clear Eva stickers illustrated by Sadamoto Yoshiyuki, author of the shonen manga. Price 648 yen. Source: Mangaoh Club. For 648 yen, the volume can't just have 94 pages of the manga and a few illustrations, can it? I'm assuming there'll be more to it.
  • The Mou Teikoku (Hair/Fur Empire?) has started its plan to conquer Japanese service provider Nifty, and in commemoration, the Flash opening anime for Ushi no Koe (official English title 'Cow Crys "Mou"', but I figure it's a reference to Shinkai Makoto's "Hoshi no Koe" title) is available for download on Nifty's servers here (just click on the big "Mou" kanji character). The Mou Musume (Mou girls) are agents of the underground Mou Empire, which is seeking to conquer the surface world. The rest of the website, once it's up during this (northern) autumn, will be a fee paying service. For now, you can view the related manga here and short anime episodes here. Source: Moonphase. The Flash animation is done by Morino Aruji, whose RZ-Consent website has some pretty interesting stuff (at least it did when I looked some time last year ^_^ ).
  • Fell asleep last night. And then woke up feeling terrible today -_-
  • At the TBS Anime Festa, it's been announced that GAiNAX (and the staff who brought you Mahoromatic) will be producing a new anime "Kono Miniku mo Utsukushii Sekai" (This Ugly and Beautiful World) - a combination invasion sci-fi and love story (with some ecchi-ness) to commence broadcast on BS-i in 2004. Planning, original work and animation by GAiNAX, director will be Saeki Shouji, with draft characters by Ditama Bow (of the Mahoromatic manga). Source: Moonphase. Updated 14 August 2003.
  • A manga version of Raimu (Lime) iro Senkitan, based on the computer game and TV anime, will commence serialisation in the December 2003 issue of Comptiq. Original story by Akahori Satoru, manga by Itou Ei. Source: Moonphase.
  • Fansite Kaze Hayashi Hi Yama has photos of the locations around Lake Kizaki, from which region the setting for Onegai Twins was taken, together with comparison with scenes from the anime. Source: Rakuga Kidou. See my 26 July 2003 for a related write-up about fans visiting the area.
  • Sen to Chihiro no Kamikakushi (Sprited Away) parody in Flash by Heppoko Movies. Produced over about four days. Source: Rakuga Kidou. Not sure how long the movie will be up...
  • Another fan Flash movie, this time by Ore no Ie, and featuring Chiyo Chichi from Azumanga Daioh. Source: Rakuga Kidou.

9 August 2003 (second early update)

  • Excite Japan reports that, to commemorate the release of the ghost novel "Kumohachi: The True Monsters Story" by Ootsuka Eiji, a clay anime Youkai Shou Sensou (Ghost Skirmish) has been produced by Nishijima Daisuke. A preview is available for streaming download here, but you need to answer a quiz first. Select the second choice and then click on the button. Don't expect it to be a slick, big budget work. Source: Aniota.
  • Yahoo Japan cites the Mainichi Shimbun for a report that Studio Ghibli will be taking part in the 2005 World Expo in Aichi, Japan. Under consideration is a plan by which visitors can experience the Miyazaki world using the latest virtual reality technology. Source: Aniota. Director Oshii Mamoru will also involved with the World Expo, though in a separate project. For details of that project, see my 1 June 2003 entry.
  • Back on 11 July 2003, I wrote that the release of Japan Post's commemorative stamps on technology and anime heroes and heroines had been delayed. Now the postal authority has put back the release of the four series of those stamps yet again. New dates are now:
    16 December 2003 - first series
    23 January 2004 - second series
    23 February 2004 - third series
    23 March 2004 - fourth series
    Source: Aniota. For more info, see my 8 June 2003 entry.
  • After six years, the manga Drakuun by Manabe Johji (and translated into English by Studio Proteus) is over. The final Volume 5 was published by Kadokawa Shoten on 1 August 2003, price 960 yen (excluding tax). Source: Chara-Ani.com.
  • Is an OVA based on adult game Ashita Deatta Shoujo by software company Moon Stone in the works? This post to 2 channel states that the staff diary on the company's website had an entry referring to a "DVD anime". That entry in the diary was soon removed, however. Source: Moonphase.

7 August 2003 (fourth update)

  • Maybe more later. I'm going to lie down and read, which probably means I'll nod off and won't wake up til tomorrow morning...
  • Just when Matsumoto Leiji and Nishizaki Yoshinori had kissed and made up (metaphorically writing) after their dispute over the rights to Space Battleship Yamato and it looked like we could look forward to seeing their separate future Yamato projects, Tohokushinsha Film Corporation has stepped into the fray. Tohokushinsha has issued a statement claiming that it took an assignment of Nishizaki's copyright on 20 December 1996. Further, it states that since it has the copyright to Yamato, that extends to the right to produce any new Yamato works. Tohokushinsha has not consented to either Matsumoto's new Yamato project, nor Nishizaki's new Yamato anime, and will be corresponding with the two men in respect of these matters. The company did however point out its great respect for both men and their contributions to the Yamato works. Source: Aniota BBS.
  • An anime Samurai Champloo is in the works. Character designs by Nakazawa Kazuto (who'll also be chief animation director), anime production by Manglobe Inc. Source: Moonphase.
  • It's now confirmed that the Gungrave anime, based on the game of the same name, will commence broadcast in October 2003, on TV Tokyo. Anime production by Madhouse. Source: Moonphase.
  • R.O.D - The TV - will commence broadcast on Fuji TV in October 2003. Source: Moonphase. Episodes 1 to 4 will receive advance broadcast on a Sky Perfect pay per view channel over the month of September.
  • More Komugi-chan! Karte 4 has been tentatively set down for release on 25 November 2003. The final volume, Karte 5, will be released in March 2004. Meanwhile, Karte 3, to be released on DVD on 10 September 2003, will first be broadcast on TVK on 30 August 2003 (and Kids Station on 2 and 4 September 2003). Source: Moonphase.
  • Updated the Jubei-chan 2 news.
  • Bee Train's upcoming anime Avenger will commence broadcast on 1 October 2003 on TV Tokyo. Source: Reinbo Actress.
  • Production IG's upcoming OVA Dead Leaves will be released in the coming (northern) spring. Source: Reinbo Actress. Don't know if that's news or not, since Production IG has its own English language website.
  • Remember back around 1 April 2002 when anime director Daichi Akitaroh wrote on his online diary that there were no plans as yet for a sequel to Jubei-chan: Secret of the Lovely Eyepatch? Yeah, well, okay, so no one was reading my page. Anyway, Reinbo Actress now reports that seiyuu Horie Yui will star in the second anime instalment Jubei-chan 2. The rest of the cast is yet to be decided. Update: from Moonphase: the title of the series will be "Jubei-chan 2 Siberia Yagyu no Gyakushuu" (Siberia Yagyu's Counterattack), director will be Daichi again. (Horie will also voice the role of fairy Sarara in the upcoming anime Bindzume Yousei (Bottle Fairy) to commence broadcast in the northern autumn).
  • 5 August 2003 - Car bomb explodes outside Marriott Hotel in Jakarta, Indonesia, killing ten civilians and injuring scores; authorities suspect that the crime was perpetrated by terrorist organisation Jemaah Islamiah.
    6 August 1945 - US/Allied forces drop atomic bomb on Hiroshima, Japan, ushering in a new age of weapons of mass destruction, and killing an estimated 140,000 people within five months.
    7 August 2003 - Self confessed bomb conspirator Amrozi is sentenced to death in Indonesia for his part in the bombs, a cruder form of weapon of mass destruction, which killed and injured hundreds of civilians in Bali in October 2002.
    8 August 2003 - High level US officials will gather at Strategic Air Command Headquarters in Nebraska, allegedly to plan a new generation of "mini" nuclear weapons (ie weapons of mass destruction).
    9 August 1945 - US/Allied forces drop atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan, killing an estimated 70,000 within five months.

6 August 2003 (second update)

  • This unconfirmed post to 2 channel suggests that the Gungrave anime will commence in October 2003. Source: Moonphase.
  • JC Staff has a website up for the TV anime adaptation of Ikki Tousen, on which the company is working. Only the homepage has been constructed to date, however. Source: Moonphase. Episode two was broadcast today. It looks even more ecchi than episode one, which is more ecchi (and sillier) than the manga (IMO). I still prefer the manga.
  • The OVA series Space Pirate Captain Harlock Outside Legend ~ The Endless Odyssey ~ is to be broadcast on NTV commencing 7 October 2003. Source: TA Group BBS.
  • Don't know if this is news or not. Haven't seen it posted around much... Then again, I don't follow US broadcast news. Anyway, the Eizo Shimbun reports that Sunrise's full 3D CG anime SD Gundam Force will commence broadcast on Cartoon Network in September 2003. The series will be 26 thirty minute episodes. There's no broadcast date for Japan yet. Source: Aniota.
  • Volume 2 of the manga Ibara no Ou (King of Thorn) by Iwahara Yuji will be published by Enterbrain on 25 September 2003, price 620 yen. Source: Toranoana.

5 August 2003 (second update)

  • The official website for Chojushin Gravion has a few screenshots for the opening credits sequence of the upcoming sequel Chojushin Gravion Zwei. Source: Moonphase.
  • Seiyuu and singer Mieno Hitomi will release a double CD "best of" album, titled "Hitomi Mieno 10th Anniversary Box 10 Sai (10 Years Old)" on 8 October 2003. There'll be a first pressing limited edition version, which will come with DVD containing selected promotional videos etc, catalogue number VIZL-83, price 4,800 yen (excluding tax). The regular edition will have catalogue number VICL-61201 and price of 3,800 yen (excluding tax). Source: Mangaoh Club.
  • Wonder Festival 2003 was held on 3 August 2003 in Tokyo, where many garage kits were on exhibit. ZDNet Japan's report has loads of photos of various figures. Click on the pics at the bottom of the report to take you to sub-pages which more pics. Then click on the pic of your choice for an enlargement. Source: Ma-ten.
  • It's been known for a while that the manga Hana Yori Dango (by Kamio Yoko, serialised in the semi-monthly manga magazine Margaret) will be finishing this month. Shueisha's official website for Margaret is now up. The final chapter of HanaDan will be published in the 20 August 2003 issue of Margaret (issue number 18). That issue will have a HanaDan cover and initial colour pages for the final HanaDan chapter, section with message from Kamio and will come with memorial postcard set (6 postcards and 2 character cards). Furthermore, it's been announced that a "Hana Yori Dango FF (Flower boys x Fighting girls)" character fan book will be published on 24 October 2003. It'll essentially be a HanaDan encyclopedia with sections including coverage of all 77 characters who appeared in the manga, information revealed for the first time about the F5 (not the F4), story guide, glossary etc. Also included will be a special manga by Kamio. Source: ultimatum half edition. Both the manga and the TV anime have been licensed for release in North America.

4 August 2003 (second update)

  • Maybe more later. But first I'm off shopping again ^_^
  • Broccoli's PC game Galaxy Angel Moonlit Lovers will be released on 22 August 2003 for Windows 98/98SE/Me/2000/XP computers (DirectX 8.1 or greater required) and will introduce a new member to the Angel team: Karasuma Chitose. For now, Impress Corporation reports that a demo version of the game is available for download (with only limited character voices). The full game will be available on both CD-ROM and DVD-ROM (no difference in price) and there'll be three versions of each format:
    Standard pack: price 7,800 yen, comes with special booklet, large sticker and mousepad.
    Premium pack: price 9,800 yen, comes with special booklet, large sticker and mousepad, Millefeuille stand pop, Lucky Star paper craft.
    Special pack: price 13,800 yen, comes with special booklet, large sticker and mousepad, Millefeuille stand pop, Lucky Star paper craft and the previous Galaxy Angel computer game.
    Source: Moonphase.
  • The website for the Broccoli/GAiNAX/Nitroplus/Takara post-apocalyptic anime Neppuu Kairiku Bushilord has updated with character and mecha designs (among other things). Source: Moonphase.
  • The Weekly Shonen Jump magazine website has a Busou Renkin wallpaper available for download until 18 August 2003. Source: ultimatum half edition. Busou Renkin (Weapons Alchemy) is the latest manga of Watsuki (Rurouni Kenshin) Nobuhiro, serialised in Jump, of course. Rather uninspiring wallpaper, though... ^_^;;

3 August 2003 (third update)

  • Announced at today's Wonder Festival is a new magazine: Weekly Watashi no Oniichan (Weekly My Big Brother). This will be collaborative project of Yotsuba Studio, Kaiyodo and Movic. Starting in the early (northern) spring of 2004, the first series of the magazine will comprise five issues. For 780 yen, you get a painted figure (presumably of a young girl, produced by Kaiyodo) and a 32 page A5 size booklet. There'll be an advance issue included with the December 2003 issue of Dengeki Moe-oh. The Watashi no Oniichan magazine will feature original character design and figure sculpting by Oshima Yasaki, concept design, illustration and manga by Yug, illustration by Tanaka Kunihiko, manga by Barasui and manga by Yuuki Shinichi. I guess the figures you get with the magazine will be like the ones on this page. Source: ultimatum half edition.
  • Bandai has a page up for its .hack//Integration DVD box. There's also a promo video to watch. As previously reported, the DVD box will contain episode 28 of .hack//Sign, the four episodes of .hack//Liminality and a sound drama for .hack//Tasogare no Udewa Densetsu. As a bonus, it'll also include the 'Welcome to "The World"' clip which was on the 2002 Game Show special DVD. To be released 24 October 2003, catalogue number BCBA-1719, duration 165 minutes (tentative), linear PCM stereo sound, 3 DVDs, price 7,800 yen. Source: Moonphase.
  • The official website for the TV anime Peacemaker Kurogane is now up, but there's only an illustration there at present. Source: Moonphase. The anime, based on the manga by Kurono Nanae, will commence broadcast in the (northern) autumn.
  • The official website for the live action Cutey Honey movie is now up. Looks like they've adopted the "Cutie Honey" spelling. Nothing to see at present, though. Source: Ma-ten.
  • The Tonari no Totoro ~ Kimi wo Nosete ~ Family Concert DVD will be released on 1 October 2003, price 3,048 yen. A 20th anniversary concert by Inoue Azumi, who's sung many songs for Studio Ghibli including for Tonari no Totoro (My Neighbour Totoro). Source: Musicmarket. See also CD Japan's listing for the DVD for more info.
  • Finally got around to "fixing" my Fushigi no Umi no Nadia Collector's Disc CD-ROM. For those of you who've bought the GAiNAX CD-ROM, you may notice that the pic towards the top right hand corner of the back of the case (ie of the New Nautilus rising out of the water) doesn't actually appear on the CD-ROM. To make up for this omission, GAiNAX has the pic available for download on this page of its website. I've created a new CD-ROM with the omitted picture. If you want to do the same, just follow these instructions.
  • Seems to me like that only thing on the recently released Refrain of Evangelion CD that could be considered new in any sense is track 14: Fly Me to the Moon (Main Version II / Renewal #16) and even that is just a TV size version of the full version which was included on the Addition CD all those years back.
  • Put up some shelves today and filled it immediately with magazines and manga which I've collected over the past number of months. Up to now, the books have been stacked in various places, including on my bed. (The place was starting to look like Yomiko's place.) Now I don't have to sleep on the floor anymore \^_^/ Now to find somewhere for my DVDs...

2 August 2003 (early update)

  • Making my way through Anno Hideaki's second live action movie Shikijitsu (the DVD has English subtitles). For some reason, not sure why, it does keep me watching. Anno does throw up a lot of different images, varied compositions, contrast of colours etc. Visually an interesting work. The story is starting to draw me in as well. Fujitani Ayako's performance as the girl is varied: at times the acting seems B-grade to me, at times it's excellent. She's actually the author of the novel on which the movie is based. Iwai Shunji puts in a good (if perhaps unremarkable) performance as the filmaker - interesting since he's usually behind the camera as director rather than in front of it as actor.
  • I don't know much about doujin anime and even less about hentai doujin anime. Don't know if they're common or not. Anyway, I came across one, so I thought I'd mention it: adult doujin robot anime Himitsu Gattai Dairaon (Secret Union Dairaon) is in the works (the double meaning should be pretty obvious ^_^;;). This anime is of the shota genre (the main character's name is even Shota) and created by the circle Vingt-et-huit. In true robot tradition, Shota is the pilot of Dairaon 1-goki, part of the giant robot built by his father but sought by the army for its own nefarious purposes. The anime is still in production, but for now, volume 0 has been announced. It'll be available exclusively through Comic Toranoana. Volume 0 will contain opening movie, adult movie digest clip (approximately 3 minutes), sample movie (approximately 1 minute), 50 wallpapers, character design works, icons, mini-novel and theme song. Being a doujin work, volume 0 will be released as a CD-ROM (but with DVD packaging) with the files being in MPEG-1 and MEPG-2 format. To be released 14 August 2003, price 1,300 yen (excluding tax). You can download a demo movie here. Note that all the above links lead to adult images etc.

1 August 2003 (sixth update)

  • The anime movie Ougon no Hou (The Golden Laws) is to be released theatrically this (northern) autumn. You can view a "making of" clip and trailer for the movie here. And download a couple of wallpapers here. In the 25th century, highschool students Satoru and Arisu board a time machine from the 30th century and experience a space-time adventure meeting historical figures. Source: Aniota.
  • For those of you who missed Romanov Higa's full 3D CG independent anime URDA, you can now view it by streaming download at anime goo's website for the five episode show. Episode 1 will be available until mid-August 2003. Source: Aniota. Set in World War II Germany, Erna and Janet come across a mysterious girl while battling Nazis. A DVD of the episodes is planned to be released in future.
  • Computer crashed. Don't think I lost anything...
  • TMS Entertainment's website for the TV anime Kyogoku Natsuhiko Kousetsu Hyaku Monogatari (based upon the novel "Kousetsu Hyaku Monogatari" by Kyogoku Natsuhiko) is now up. Source: Aniota. This horror series set in the time of the Bakumatsu (end of the Tokugawa government - Rurouni Kenshin time) will commence broadcast in October 2003.
  • It's stated on the Fujimishobo website that those who purchase the September 2003 issue of Dragon Age magazine can apply for a Chrono Crusade pilot DVD. I don't know what the application fee would be. The TV anime will commence broadcast in October 2003.
  • Nitroplus make computer games, some (if not all) of which are adult in nature. Nevertheless, the company will be releasing a DVD of the opening sequences and demo movies from its various games. Title will be "Nitroplus the Movie Collection". I have no idea whether those clips could contain adult content. Anyway, the DVD will be available only at events just as Wonder Festival and by mail order from the company starting 4 August 2003. Price 2,000 yen. Sound will be PCM. For a list of the movies, see the page linked above. No indication of the length of the DVD though... Source: Moonphase. I wish more companies would do something like this. I wouldn't mind, say, DVDs of the anime sequences from Sakura Taisen games or Final Fantasy games. If you want to buy this DVD, perhaps online stores like Jungle SCS or AMO Tokyo may be able to help. Or perhaps your preferred game retailer. To get an idea of the movies of Nitroplus, there are a few demo movies to download on this page of theirs.
  • For Mahoromatic fans thinking of purchasing GAiNAX's Digital Maiden series of desktop accessory CD-ROMs, note that a Mahoromatic Digital Maiden Complete DVD-ROM 1st will be released that will collect together volumes 1 to 3 of the CD-ROM release. Furthermore the DVD-ROM will be compatible with Windows XP (as well as 98, Me and 2000). The usual sort of contents: over 100 wallpapers, 7 screensavers, 9 mini games, voice samples, icons, schedule etc. To be released 28 August 2003, price 6,800 yen. First pressing will come with a Mahoro mini clear file. Source: Moonphase.
  • Impress Corporation reports that a four volume OVA based on the network game Kingdom of Chaos is to be produced by Idea Factory and Taki Corporation, with volume 1 of the DVD to be released 24 October 2003, price 3,800 yen. Title of this fantasy series will be "Kingdom of Chaos - Born to Kill -". See the Impress Corporation report for screenshots (click on the pics for enlargements). I assume they're shots of the OVA, but it's not expressly stated. Volume 1 will be 30 minutes' duration with stereo sound. It'll come with special card and the DVD will include bonus clip on the world of the network game. Source: Moonphase. The game claims over 500,000 subscribers. If you want to play, the first month is free but subsequent months cost 300 yen each.
  • The Comix Wave Films website has updated with the news that Daichi Akitaroh's OVA Makasete Iruka! is scheduled for release in the (northern) spring of 2004. Source: Moonphase. This OVA is in a sense an independent anime with much of the drive behind the work coming from Daichi. Comix Wave was also involved with the release of the independent anime Hoshi no Koe by Shinkai Makoto. Anyway, originally, Makasete Iruka! had been scheduled for release in the (northern) autumn of 2003.
  • The official website for the Playstation 2 game RahXephon Soukyuu Gensoukyoku, to be released 7 August 2003, has updated with a second trailer/promotion video for the game and a preview of the OVA side story "Kanojo to Kanojo Jishin to" (She and She Herself) which will be included if you purchase the special "Plusculus" package of this game. Source: Moonphase. For more info, see my 5 July 2003 entry. Each trailer is 30Mb in size but only one minute long.
  • Updated yesterday's entry to include a link to Hama Chisaki's website. She's to be Sailor Mercury in the live action Pretty Guardian Sailormoon series.
  • Shueisha's September manga release list is now out. Source: ultimatum half edition. The final volume 23 of the popular Hikaru no Go manga will be published on 4 September 2003, ISBN 4-08-873504-8. Volume 4 of the perfect/complete edition of Kodomo no Omocha (Child's Toy) will be published on 12 September 2003, ISBN 4-08-855102-8. Whereas the original tankoubon for the manga spanned 10 volumes, the perfect edition will be seven thicker volumes. Furthermore, the perfect edition volumes sport new covers by author Obana Miho and restores the colour pages as originally serialised (the original tankoubon reproduced those pages in monochrome). Still no news of volume 10 of Tenjou Tenge...
  • Another pic of some of the cast of the live action Pretty Guardian Sailormoon series in this Yomiuri report. And other one in this Web Newtype.com report. Source: Tentative Name. The series commences broadcast on 4 October 2003.
  • Comic Toranoana states that the TV anime Shingetsutan Tsuki-hime (based on a series of doujin games etc) will commence broadcast on 9 October 2003 on BS-i. Prior to that, the limited edition first pressing only Prologue DVD will be released on 26 September 2003. The official website (linked above) has also confirmed this scheduled air date.
  • Animate Yokohama (also the site of Animate's internet mail order business) has changed its URL from www.animate-shopping.co.jp to www.animate-shop.jp.
  • One of the things I've been meaning to write about is the resolution of the dispute between Matsumoto Leiji and Nishizaki Yoshinori regarding the copyright over Space Battleship Yamato. Animaxis has now beaten me to it. But that's fine. Less for me to translate ^_^ Anyway, as you can see in their English language report, Nishizaki is working on an anime "Space Battleship Yamato Rebirth Chapter" to be released next year. Whereas Matsumoto is working independently on his Dai Ginga Series Dai Yamato Hen 7 vs 7 (Great Galaxy Series ~ Great Yamato Arc 7 vs 7) anime. So that's more Yamato for everyone ^_^ 


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