Category Archives: Giveaways

Bridget RETURNS to Guilty Gear | Kelly Ohanian Interview

Late last month, Guilty Gear Strive began trending on Twitter after fan-favorite character Bridget was announced at EVO 2022 as part of the game’s season 2 roster, with additional characters yet to be revealed!

Bridget in Guilty Gear x2

Bridget was introduced as a twin, male character with a unique upbringing in which Bridget needed to be raised as a girl to avoid a superstition in her village that believed that a family who gave birth to same-sex twins would bring an omen or bad luck to the village; because of this, Bridget came a very memorable character. Although there was much excitement about Bridget’s return after nearly a decade of hiatus, Bridget began trending on Twitter for a different reason.

In STRIVE, Bridget fully embraced her feminine side and ‘came out’ as a transwoman. Throughout STRIVE, Bridget hints at self-doubt and the feeling of wanting to admit to something but being afraid to do so. Conflicted, Bridget seeks Ky Kiske out, and he encourages her to decide for herself how she wants to live. Her conversations with Ky and Goldlewis lead her to admit to being scared of losing what she has, but she no longer wants to lie to herself and asserts that she is a girl, and finally finds the strength to live as her true self no matter what others think.

Bridget’s new design in Guilty Gear STRIVE

Although a handful of fans were not happy about this decision, most fans came out in support of Bridget. Throughout Twitter, fans showed their support for Bridget with tweets, fanart, and fan videos; sharing their enthusiasm and their opinions as to why Bridget coming out as a trans individual is an important highlight in the Guilty Gear series. Furthermore, Arc System Works confirmed Bridget’s gender, In an article published this morning, (9/14/22) in which Daisuke Ishiwatari (Creator of the Guilty Gear series) states:

Daisuke Ishiwatari at Fanime Con

“We’ve received many inquiries about Bridget’s gender. After the events of Bridget’s story in Arcade Mode, she self-identifies as a woman. So, as to whether “he” or “she” would be the correct pronoun for Bridget, the answer would be “she.” Ishiwatari continues “Bridget tries living as a man, but it doesn’t feel right. This is where the Arcade Mode story begins. After her exchanges with Goldlewis and Ky, Bridget faces parts of herself she has tried to ignore and makes a big decision for herself. I hope that all of you will watch over her path after her courageous choice to stay true to her own feelings.”

We also wanted to hear from the English voice actor of Bridget and get their opinion on the matter and their experiences voicing Bridget. We had the wonderful opportunity to interview the voice of Bridget, KELLY OHANIAN. Join us for this very special interview as we speak about her experience voicing Bridget in Guilty Gear strive and her experience with the fandom!

Purchase Bridget’s Guilty Gear theme song by Aisha for only .99 cents

Click here to stream it or purchase it via Amazon Music

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Exclusive High School of The Dead Interview | The Boys

This July will mark the 12th Anniversary of the anime, fan-favorite series, High School of the Dead. The series ended all production after series creator and writer, Daisuke Sato died on March 22, 2017. Fast forward 12 years and Jrock band Kishida Kyoudan & The Akeboshi Rockets, the band that sang the now-famous HOTD opening, released an updated version of said opening with its very first music video to go along with it.

Now, after 12 years HOTD English cast members Leraldo Anzaldua and Mark X. Laskowski, who play Takashi Komuro and Kōta Hirano respectively, recount their time working behind the mic on this series. Watch our exclusive interview and enter for your chance to win an auto from Leraldo and Mark, and the VOL.1 of the HOTD Manga! More details in our interview below:

-Giveaway-

Learn how you can this HOTD bundle, which includes an autograph from Leraldo, Mark, and Vol.1 of HOTD Manga! Details in the interview video above!

Don’t miss any upcoming interviews and giveaways!

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BELLE – Exclusive Special Release Interview with Kylie McNeil

This week saw the release of the much anticipated BELLE, Mamoru Hosoda’s 7th feature film. The film instantly made headlines at Cannes with a 14-minute standing ovation. The film later made headlines among anime fans during its theatrical release back in January of this year. Both the original Japanese and the newly dubbed English version were shown in theaters nation-wide. In the film’s U.S. opening weekend it made $1.6 million from 1,326 theaters, and a total of $1.8 million over the four-day Martin Luther King Day holiday frame.

The film received five Annie Award nominations making it the most nominations for a Japanese anime film ever at the show, even surpassing previous films Spirited Away, Millennium Actress, and the more recent, Weathering with You. Most notable, the film’s cast, both in English and Japanese, were both praise for their vocal performance. This is both Kaho Nakamura and Kylie McNeil’s first anime, voice over performance.

Kylie McNeil, already an upcoming actor and singer in the theater scene in New York, had zero film credits, aside from an off-Broadway show “Runaways“, BELLE is Kylie’s very first film credit.

After its theatrical run, fans anticipated its home video release, which finally happened on May 17th. Coinciding with the Blu-ray and the Target exclusive: Steelbook release, Milan Records opened preorders for the vinyl copy of BELLE’s soundtrack, and is currently available to pre-order on Amazon.

Join us in celebration of Mamoru Hosoda’s BELLE release with this special interview with the voice of Suzu / BELLE, Kylie McNeil! Back for a more in-depth and formal interview, Kylie walks through her experiences working behind the mic, voicing Suzu / BELLE.

Watch our interview above and learn how you could win our exclusive BELLE Bundle, which includes:

The BELLE movie (Steelbook ed.), A copy of the BELLE soundtrack (from Japan) & an autograph print from Paul Castro Jr. (the voice of BEAST)

all this and more in our exclusive interview! Don’t forget to subscribe for more anime and voice actor content or subscribe to our site:

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Exclusive XAIO Interview – Genshin Impact

Ever since the release of Genshin Impact 1.3 in February 3, 2021, XIAO’s design and character traits made him an instant fan favorite. From his character stats to his mysterious demeanor, XIAO draws in fans from around the world.

Join me and voice actor Laila Berzins, as we discuss her career origins and experiences voicing XIAO in Genshin Impact. Get to know the voice behind everyone’s favorite “angsty, emo teenager” in our most recent Genshin Impact interview:

Learn how you can win an autographed print, signed by Laila Berzins!

Watch our interview above for instructions on how to enter. Deadline to enter the giveaway:
May 7th, 2022

Exclusive Yae Miko Interview – Genshin Impact 2.5

Ever since her appearance as an NPC, Yae Miko has been among the top, fan-favorite characters in Geshin Impact. With the release of 2.5 at the of end February, fans finally got a glimpse of the voice behind the mysterious editor-in-chief & shrine maiden of Grand Narukami Shrine!

Watch our exclusive interview with voice actor, Ratana and get to know the voice behind YAE MIKO!

GIVEAWAY

HOW TO ENTER

Subscribe to our YouTube channel here, and answer the following questions on the video’s comment section (on YouTube):

What would be the name of Ratana’s Publishing House AND Why do you like Yae Miko?

Winner(s) will be contacted via YouTube and email using their YouTube usernames. Deadline is April 2nd 2022.


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BELLE | Should You Watch It?

Mamoru Hosoda at Animation Is Film Festival 2021

Known for his emotionally touching and visually captivating films, such as Wolf Children, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, and Summer Wars, award-winning film director Mamoru Hosoda is back with his ninth film, BELLE.

Now playing in theaters, Belle is a modern adaptation of Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont’s Beauty and the Beast and could be considered a spiritual sequel to Hosoda’s 2009 film, Summer Wars, as it also deals with a virtual world.

Synopsis

The film starts with Suzu Naito (Voiced by Kylie McNeill), a shy 17-year old high school student living with her father (Voiced by Ben Lepley). She lives haunted by the memory of her mother’s death at a young age. Since then, Suzu has been living in her shadow, having almost no close connections and no self confidence. At least, until one day, with the help of her one close friend Hiroka Betsuyaku (Voiced by Jessica DiCicco), she discovers the online virtual world of ‘U‘ where over 5 billion users log on daily. When Suzu logs in for the first time, U automatically creates a beautiful, freckled, pink-haired avatar based on her biometrics, and she nicknames herself “Bell” (鈴 = Suzu is Japanese for Bell).

Suzu logging into U for the first time. Bimetic readers in her ear.

Enjoying her newfound life in anonymity; Suzu, using her voice and overcoming her trauma, develops Bell into a world-famous singer among U. Rapidly gaining popularity, Suzu holds events and concerts as Bell in U, and fans come to dub her as ‘Belle‘ (French for “Beautiful”) However, during one of Belle’s online concerts, she is interrupted by an avatar named only as “The Dragon” (Voiced by Paul Castro Jr).

“The Dragon” avater appears for the first time, during BELLE’s concert.

Intrigued, Suzu & Hiro embark on a journey to discover the person behind The Dragon. Along the way, Suzu realizes the real power of being anonymous online and the many reasons why people like her escape to U from their own lives. 

What type of story is BELLE?

The film seems to be confused about what type of story it wants to tell; whether it is an action-adventure story, as Suzu begins to discover the virtual world of U as Bell, or a romantic story, as the plot depicts the ‘forbidden’ nature in the relationship between Bell and The Dragon and Suzu’s determination to help The Dragon. One thing is for sure, the film is a musical feature. Unlike a Disney film, where characters spontaneously spring into a musical number often without warning, the film does a great job in coordinating the music with the imagery that’s on screen.

“Lend Me Your Voice”

The film touches on several sensitive topics and themes, such as overcoming personal trauma. The film successfully portrays one’s desire to escape real situations for a glamorous, anonymous lifestyle; a secret, secondary life where real-life issues are nonexistent. Additionally, many viewers find themselves connected to the main character as the film dives into the psychological impact of dealing with a personal loss and its effects on a person’s daily life. 

The Music

The music in this film is captivating and leaves the viewers in astonishment, undoubtedly worthy of a 14-minute standing ovation. Kaho Nakumora (Suzu/Belle in Japanese) and Kylie McNeill’s vocal performances are phenomenal and are presented with a profusion of emotional appeal. Kylie’s vocals perfectly embody Kaho’s performance as BELLE and, with Ludvig Forssell’s creative songwriting skills alongside Mamoru Hosoda and actress Kaho Nakumora, make exquisite lyrics. 

BELLE sings “Gale of Songs” as she enters U for the first time.

“Should I Watch it?”

Though the film may contain some unnecessary subplots, it makes up for its visual presentation and musical and vocal performances. The film portrays Suzu with relatable qualities that speak to the viewer, whether you have experienced personal loss or not. If the above mentioned is not convincing enough to watch BELLE in theaters, consider that this film was worthy of a 14-minute standing ovation during the 2021 Cannes Film Festival.

Perhaps cast members, Kylie Mcneill and Paul Castro Jr can convince you through our exclusive interviews. Watch as Kylie & Paul share behind the scene stories and their experiences working on BELLE.

Interview With Kylie McNeill

Interview With Paul Castro Jr

We also included a brief Interview with Mamoru Hosoda we conducted during the 2021 Animation Is Film Festival in Hollywood, CA.

Interview With Paimon – Anime Los Angeles 2022

Join us as we explore Corina Boettger’s voice over career and journey voicing Paimon in the hit mobile game, Genshin Impact!

This marks our first, in-person interview, since Febraruy 2020. Corina has other character roles such as, Tatsumaki (One Punch Man), Naoko (Dino Girl Gauko) and Mizuki (AI: The Somnium Files). In September 2020, she became known for providing the voice of Pimon in Genshin Impact.

~GIVEAWAY~

Enter for your chnace to win an autographed Paimon wall scroll and acrylic standee signed by Corina Boettger. For more details, watch our interview above!

MyAnimeList’s Zombieland Saga: Revenge “Caption This” contest

MyAnimeList has announced that it will be holding a worldwide “caption this” contest in collaboration with the popular TV anime Zombieland Saga: Revenge. From the submitted entries, MyAnimeList management and staff involved with the anime will choose the funniest 4-panel manga. The winner will be announced at the end of July 2021.

Contest Outline

A global “caption this” contest using images from the popular TV anime Zombieland Saga: Revenge, open to participants from all over the world.

In response to three panels Tweeted by the official MyAnimeList Twitter account, participants must choose a fourth panel, caption it, and retweet it using #CaptionZLSR to enter.

The submitted 4-panel manga will be screened by MyAnimeList management and staff involved with the anime, and the creator of the funniest manga will receive a Blu-ray signed by the anime’s cast. There will be a total of five different ‘themes’ per week, the starting theme is “The Legendary –[insert you caption here]–“. For examples, take a look here.

A new theme will be posted on Friday, June 18th. Contest ends on July 11th and winners will be announced July 30, 2021.

How to Enter

  1. Follow the MyAnimeList official account on Twitter (@myanimelist)
  2. Choose a story theme and an image for the final panel.
  3. Quote retweet the chosen theme and add the image, a punchline, and the hashtag #CaptionZLSR

Event Schedule (may be subject to changes)

Entry period: June 11 – July 15 23:59 (JST) 

Prize announcement: July 30, 2021

Please keep an eye on the masterpieces created using the cute, funny, touching, and unique materials of Zombieland Saga: Revenge!

Exclusive Genshin Impact Interview: Amber (Kelly Baskin)

Miyoho’s release of Genshin Impact was one of the most anticipated mobile game releases of 2020. With over 10 million pre registered users, it quickly gathered popularity among anime fans. Shortly before its release, MiYoHo’s official Genshin Impact Twitter page announced its English voice cast.

We’ve made it a mission to interview each every Genshin Impact voice actor as possible!

Join us in our VERY first and exclusive interview with Kelly Baskin, voice of Amber. Watch as speaks Kelly goes through her career origins, her roles in Disgaea 6 as Melodia, Genshin Impact as Amber, and so much more!


–Giveaway–

TWO (2) Lucky Amber fans have a chance to win an autographed Amber print signed by Kelly Baskin! Or be even luckier and be our Grand Prize Winner (1) and win an autographed Amber print PLUS a Barron Bunny Plush!

—How to Enter—

Comment your favorite Amber quote (on Youtube’s video comment section) AND subscribe to our channel! That’s simple! Make sure to publicly subscribe to our channel!

Deadline to Enter: 4/02/21

**Winners are selected RANDOMLY and announced 48 hours after the deadline. Only ONE (1) Grand Prize Winner will be selected. Please read our terms and conditions BEFORE entering: https://thekitsunetwork.net/giveaways **

Dante Basco’s From Rufio to Zuko

You may recognize him as Zuko from the hit animated series Avatar The Last Air Bender or maybe even recognize him from Steven Spielberg’s Hook featuring the late, Robbin Williams.

Dante Basco is an actor, voice actor, poet and now an author, releasing his first book, From Rufio to Zuko, a journey into Basco’s personal acting career from an American-Filipino perspective living in the small, industrial town of Pittsburg, California. The book not only covers his career but also, some of his poetry skills as well.

_DSC0534

During a book tour event at Barnes and Nobel at The Grove, Basco spoke about his experience being part of the Avatar cast,

_DSC0463

“When I originally auditioned for Zuko, I asked them, ‘is this like Danny Zuko or something?‘ I have no clue where the name [Zuko] comes from. The funny thing about Avatar is, [. . .] I go there [Nickelodeon Studios] they give you this script that’s like an anime inspired, epic tail of like martial arts, four-elements — and you’re like, ‘this ain’t Nickelodeon‘, you’re like reading the script and you’re like, ‘is this some Disney XD movie, what is this?’

He goes on,

[. . .] Who’s is this dude? He has a ponytail, he got a scar on his face, chasing this Avatar dude, always yellin’. The whole first season, he’s like ‘honor, honor, honor‘ I’m like, what am I doing? and then all of a sudden, it changed. When I read the script and find out how he got the scared, it was like ‘Who IS this dude?‘.

Crazy things started happening; I remember we were at Sundance [Film Feastival], and I ran into Jason Issac, who plays Genernal Zhao in the show and the older Malfoy in the Hary Potter movies [Refering to Lucius Malfoy] and he was like “Dante! That cartoon we did, WT-f??” you know? because it started to become this phenomenal thing, a CARTOON we did, you know? And this was before comic cons started popping up.”

Basco also went back in time to relive his experience with Robbin Williams on the set of Hook,

“He was like everyone’s favorite uncle, you know, I have a lot of great memories with Robin. Like poetry actually, the Poetry lounge I always, to me in my heart, I’m always connecting it to Robin Williams. [. . .] I grew up a fan like everyone else, [. . .] When I watch Dead Poet Society it was like; It blew my mind. [. . .] We would be able to sit in the make up room, I’m getting my hair done, he’s getting his hair done and we would talk about poetry because he knew how much I love poetry. He’d tell me about his favorite poets and I’d tell about my favorite poets; He was big supporter of me being a poet.”

Remembering Williams, Basco explains,

“When I got to work with him, He’s great! Like, Everything you think Robin is gonna be, the fastest, wittiest, craziest dude in the world, he is! Running 10,00000 miles an hour, so amazing, he’s a god. He IS the Genie from Aladdin, THAT’S who he is. He comes in the room and magic is going to happen just because he’s there and it always does.”

Basco also holds the title of voicing the very first Asian-American (Chinese-American) hero, Jake Long in Disney’s animated series, American Dragon: Jake Long.

Pick a copy of Dante Basco’s newest book, From Ruifo to Zuko now available at your local bookstore, or…

GIVEAWAY

Basco fans now have the opportunity to win this SIGNED copy of Dante Basco’s book, From Rufio to Zuko! All you have to do is share this post on ANY social media platform using #FromRufioToZukoTKN. The winner will be announced on Dec 1st on our FACEBOOK page.