Category Archives: Los Angeles

Anime Expo Lite announces “Discover Little Tokyo” Event

Anime Expo Lite 2021 ticketholders will have the opportunity to partake in a special promotion event being offered by a dozens retailers and restaurants in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles!

Little Tokyo’s famous Yagura or Tower

Beginning Friday, June 25 thru Sunday, July 11, 2021, Anime Expo Lite Ticketholders are invited to discover the historic Little Tokyo district and visit each of the participating establishments listed below to receive a custom designed Anime Expo coaster.

There are 6 different full color coasters available to collect, each may be assembled to create the above artwork designed by, Collateral Damage Studios commemorating Anime Expo’s partnership this year with Hate Is A Virus.

The list of participating establishments are as follows:

Although held virtually the past two years, Anime Expo Lite 2021 marks the 30th Anniversary of the long-running annual convention. Anime Expo Lite begins on July 3-4, 2021 from 12pm – 8pm (PST).

Tickets for Anime Expo Lite 2021 are just $5 (+ processing fees) with all proceeds to benefit the Hate Is a Virus commUNITY Action Fund. Purchase your tickets here and take a trip to Los Angeles to ‘Discover Little Tokyo’ and get exclusive access to Anime Expo Lite (Live stream).

Lucasfilm + Anime Expo Lite: STAR WARS: VISIONS Panel & Sneak Peak

Anime Expo announced that Lucasfilm will bring a galaxy far, far away to Anime Expo Lite this July with Star Wars: Visions – Sneak Preview panel!

Join host Chastity Vicencio and Lucasfilm executive producers, Jacqui Lopez, James Waugh Josh Rimes and Qubic Pictures’ Co-Executive Producer, Justin Leach and Kanako Shirasaki for an inside look at Star Wars: Visions before the series debuts on Disney+ later this year.

Star Wars: Visions is an upcoming anthology of animated shorts celebrating
Star Wars through the lens of the world’s best anime creators and storytellers.

Concept Visual

According to Kathleen Kennedy, President of Lucasfilm Ltd, Star Wars: Visions[is an] anthology collection [that] will bring ten fantastic visions from several of the leading Japanese anime studios, offering a fresh and diverse cultural perspective to Star Wars.

The upcoming novel Ronin written by Emma Mieko Candon, will tie into one of the shorts. Ronin is set to release on October 12, 2021. There is no current release date for Star Wars: Visions.

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Full Panel Details:

Star Wars: Visions – Sneak Preview
Date: July 3, 2021 / 3:00PM PST
Duration: 30 minutes

Where:  Anime Expo Lite

Tickets to access this year’s Anime Expo Lite programming are $5 each, with all proceeds benefiting the Hate Is A Virus commUNITY Action Fund. After the stream concludes on July 4th, ticketholders can re-watch the content, as well as access additional programming, on a VOD basis from July 5th -16th, 2021.

Interview with Author & Voice actor, Joe Zieja

Voice actors normally have a theatre or radio background and in fact, most of our guests we’ve interviewed state this during our interviews. Joe Zieja differs from this, as his background involves the U.S. Air Force and writing; authoring three SciFi comedies, The Epic Failure series.

Watch our interview with Joe Zieja below to learn more about his career and his his journey to become a prolific voice actor. Zieja has been featured in Fire Emblem (Claude Von Riegan), Star Fox (Fox McCloud), Fate/Apocrypha (Achilles), Zoophobia (Zill) and most recently in Phantom Breaker: Omnia video game!

Bushiroad x Little Tokyo: Eat At Little Tokyo D4DJ Event!

Bushiroad and popular Japanese anime shop, Anime Jungle have teamed in order to help support small business in the Little Tokyo district in Los Angeles, California.

Bushiroad known for its popular card game, Cardfight!! Vanguard and the music media franchise BanG Dream! They have teamed up with local businesses in the Little Tokyo area to, not only promote their latest project D4DJ -(Dig Delight Direct Drive DJ) but to also help out businesses that are suffering during the COVID19 pandemic.

D4DJ -(Dig Delight Direct Drive DJ) is a new music media franchise created by Bushiroad. It features the creative talents of Japanese novelist and scriptwriter,, Kō Nakamura (Crying 100 Times, Tori Girl) and Takaaki Kidani as the executive producer. The franchise will focus on DJing and remixing different music genre with electronic dance music.

Much like BanG! Dream, It consists of a rhythm game D4DJ Groovy Mix, music CDs, an anime series and an upcoming manga series. An English version of the rhythm game is currently in development and set to be release in 2021. Bushiroad announced worldwide streaming of the anime series via Funimation, Crunchyroll, and Sentai Filmworks, with plans for a Blu-ray release by Funimation in the future. You can watch episode 1 via D4DJ’s official YouTube channel here.

The event will offer customers the chance to get D4DJ novelty items for every $10 spent at participating stores and restaurants white supplies last. Participating stores are listed on Anime Jungle’s official event page.

D4DJ Novelties Include, D4DJ promo poster and D4DJ band sticker (Each participating store/restaurant will carry different stickers of different D4DJ and BanG! Dream bands).

In addition, customers also will receive a chance to win a CD album prizes by uploading the receipt from your store visit(s) in Little Tokyo during this event! Receipt must be within 10/23 – 11/8/2020 and can be uploaded here.

Album Prizes:

D4DJ 1st Album – 「Direct Drive!」& Poppin’Party 2nd Album: Breakthrough!」

*There will be 1 Winner per Album.*

Please note only one receipt per entry. Duplicate receipts will not be accepted. Participants may enter as many times as they wish as long as they submit a different receipt. For more information on the terms and conditions, visit the official event website here. Please follow all COVID19 prevention guidelines, each store will have a customer limit.

MIKU EXPO 2020 USA IS NO LONGER POSTPONED, ITS OFFICIALLY CANCELLED

Crypton Future Media has just announced the official CANCELLATION of Hatsune Miku’s North American Tour, MIKU EXPO 2020 USA & Canada. Earlier this year, CFM announced its postponement due to the COVID19 pandemic, however they reconsidered and have decided to cancel the tour all together.

They posted the following message on their official Facebook page

According to their Facebook post, CFM is currently redirecting their efforts towards new ways of engaging with Hatsune Miku fans across the world, and hope to be able to announce their upcoming plans with fans soon.

As stated above, contact your ticket vendor for refund details. CFM are still working on refunds, therefore, refund option may not be readily available, we suggest you continue to check your ticket vendor account, as this status may change.

Crush 40 vocalist, Johnny Gioeli Talks about the birth of Crush 40, his music, Sonic film squeal and…Bagel And Butter?

Crush 40 has affected the lives of many Sonic The Hedgehog fans, and no one knows that better than the vocalist for Crush 40, Johnny Gioeli. Johnny has been preforming since the age of 11, going on to form the 90’s rock band Hardline alongside his brother, Joey Gioeli.

During this venture, Johnny met SEGA employee, Jun Senoue and together formed what would later be known as, Crush 40. Join Johnny and us in this exclusive interview, as we speak about the origins of Crush 40, how the music was created, Johnny’s take on the Sonic movie and, as stated above, Bagel And Butter and so much more!

Fire up your Gamecube for an EXCLUSIVE Interview with Fox McCloud – Star Fox Assault!

Based in Seattle Washington, Jim Walker has been producing music since 1986. Having had his music featured in the soundtrack for the 1987 film Three O’Clock High, Jim has produced over 32 Full-Length Albums, making Jim no stranger to the recording booth.

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In 2004, Jim decided to try something different and with the help of his agent, Jim went to on to audition for the voice of one of Nintendo’s most popular character, Fox McCloud in Star Fox Assault. Star Fox Assault was released in 2005 and was the second Star Fox game to feature both shoot’em up and run ‘n’ gun shooter genres, different game modes of its original games, Star Fox and Star Fox 64.

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Though the game met with mixed reception, it went on to become a childhood favorite among Star Fox fans of today, many praising the game’s soundtrack and Fox’s English performance.

We had the honor of interviewing Jim Walker the voice of Fox McCloud in said game. Join Jim and I as we take a ride down memory lane with this exclusive interview. Listen as we take you behind the scenes as Jim explains how he got the role, his primary musical career, experiences voicing the character and other behind the scenes exclusives!

Watch til the end for a giveaway opportunity and special announcement!

Can’t get enough of Jim? Check his music by visiting his website at JVAMusic.com

A24 Checks in at The Hazbin Hotel

New York based film distributor and TV production company, A24 has announced on Friday that it will be picking up Vivienne Medrano’s The Hazbin Hotel for a full television series.

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A24 has produced critically acclaimed films such as Room staring Brie Larson and The Disaster Artist staring James Franco. A24 has also produced numerous hit comedy series such as 2 Dope Queens, and Eric Andre: Legalize Everything.

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A24 have not release anymore information regarding the show’s production nor its estimated release date.

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3 months before the pilot episode was officially released, we had the honor of speaking with Hazbin Hotel creator Vivienne Medrano during Anime Expo 2019 regarding the show’s characters, merchandise and its future, watch below:

We would like to congratulate Vivienne Medrano and her team for their hard work and well deserved, upcoming TV series. We hope that Hazbin Hotel keeps on developing into more than a TV series (Maybe a film?) and wish her and her team the best.

Interview With JAK II actor, Cutter Garcia voice of TORN

We had the honor of interviewing another very talented Jak II cast member, Cutter Garcia who voiced Underground commander, TORN.

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Garcia has made appearances in television series such as Monk, Weeds, Pretty Little Liars, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and Mom. He is known for voicing Torn in the Jak and Daxter video game series. For the first time ever actor, Cutter Garica speaks about voicing Torn and working inside the recording studio with Dan Arey and much more!

GIVEAWAY

Subscribe AND answer the following question on YouTube in the comment section to have an opportunity to win an AUTOGRAPHED print signed by Cutter Garcia!

Who is your favorite Jak and Daxter character & why?

You’ll have until August 15th 2020 to enter, good luck freedom fighter!


Earlier this year we interviewed with former Jak II voice actress, Dr.Britton Arey. Dr. Britton had left the entertainment world in order to pursuit a career in psychiatry, but in 2003 she voiced Daxter’s girlfriend, Tess in Jak II. Watch our exclusive interview below:

 

Japan LA and Little Tokyo Shops DESTROYED by Los Angeles Rioters

People took to the streets of Los Angeles on Saturday, May 31st for what began as a peaceful protest for the death of George Floyd, who died Monday after being handcuffed and pinned to the ground by Minneapolis Police Department officer, Derek Chauvin.

The protest later became violent as rioters took over the peaceful protest and, began attacking Los Angeles Police Department squad cars and setting them on fire. The protest turned riot, later made its way to affluent areas of Los Angeles including Rodeo Drive, Little Tokyo, Melrose Ave, and The Grove outdoor shopping mall.

Local businesses and shops around those areas were looted and/or set on fire during the riot prompting a mandatory curfew on the city Los Angeles and heavy police activity.

Caught by ABC 7 Action News, shows rioters breaking into well-known anime gift shop JapanLA on Melrose ave.

 

Dozens of looters entered the premises taking whatever they could find. According to a post by JapanLA:

“They [police] finally cleared them out and arrested some of the looters. We are all crushed and deeply saddened. Thank you for all the texts. We all left at 4:30pm and our staff is home safe. I’ll send more updates soon!” They released a security camera photo that shows two suspects looting the store.

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In the past, we’ve covered a few events in this and their new Little Tokyo location.

A few shops and a pharmacy were broken into and looted in the early morning hours of May 30th, in the Little Tokyo district.


According to the Japanese American Cultural & Community Center,

“Businesses in Little Tokyo were looted last night. This was not done by protesters but by people who decided to take advantage of the grief and angst of others for their personal gain.

Brian Kito of the Little Tokyo Public Safety Association expressed concern over the close proximity of Little Tokyo to City Hall and LAPD headquarters stating,

“[It] would leave [Little Tokyo] vulnerable during civil unrest. During the L.A. riots in 1992, windows were smashed at Japanese Village Plaza, Weller Court, and what was then the New Otani Hotel on Los Angeles Street.”

Man Hunt On For Former LAPD Officer Suspected Of Shooting Police Officer
LAPD headquarters a block away from the Little Tokyo district

Gov. Newsom proclaimed a state of emergency for Los Angeles after approving Mayor Eric Garcetti’s request to deploy the National Guard. National Guard arrived at 12am on May 31st, 2020.

Los Angeles’ curfew will stay in place from 8 p.m. Saturday through 5 a.m. Sunday.

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Source: Rafu Shimpo, ABC7 Action News, Japanese American Cultural & Community Center