Tag Archives: anime expo

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.

COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak effects on Conventions

Japan’s biggest anime convention of the year, AnimeJapan was canceled four days before the event was set to take place. Prior to that, the city of Osaka canceled its annual anime festival, Nipppombashi Street Festar which draws over 200K+ people to city’s Denden Town neighborhood. All this in fear of spreading the COVID-19 virus.

Taking the seriousness of the situation into consideration, Olympic 2020 travelers have been wondering if the 2020 Olyimics will suffer the same fate. On March 3rd, an International Olympic Committee spokesperson stated, that there are no plans to postpone or move the Olympics, adding “We made a decision and the decision is the Games go ahead”. The 2020 Olympics is set to take place from July 24th to August 9th 2020 in Tokyo, Japan.

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In the U.S., the first confirmed case of the COVID-19 coronavirus disease was announced on January 21st, Since then there have been over 230 cases reported and growing. Due to fear of infection, popular industry expo, Game Developers Conference was postponed to the Summer of 2020.  GDC was supposed to take place at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, CA.

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California’s biggest anime convention Anime Expo is scheduled to still take place in July of this year. The SPJA (Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation) released the following statement regarding Anime Expo status:

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With the community taking its precautions, are guest cancellations are unavoidable? For now, we’ll have to wait and see.

We encourage our viewers/readers to take precautions and help reduce the spreading of the COVID-19 virus by washing your hands and keeping general germ reduction in mind when going out in public. The following are prevention guidelines by the CDC:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.

For more information, please visit the CDC website.


Sources: Link 1, Link 2, Link 3, Link 4, Link 5

Time to CHECK IN | Hazbin Hotel

The long wait is finally over! HAZBIN HOTEL made its premiere on Oct 28th!

The pilot episode “That’s Entertainment” was released on YouTube by its creator, Vivienne Medrano (Vivziepop). The episode was an instant hit, getting over 7M views in nearly two weeks. During an interview we had with Vivienne Medrano, she spoke about having the series air on a major studio network, depending on how well the pilot episode is received and what type of deal they are offered.

Though the pilot episode became an instant hit among fans, the future of the series is still up in the air. Medrano and her team want to develop an entire season of Hazbin Hotel but for this, as Medrano puts it in our interview, they would need a bigger budget, suggesting a Kickstart campaign to help create an entire season.

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Many may know about the characters inside the amazing world of Hazbin Hotel, but very few know who is their voices are. It goes without saying that Hazbin Hotel has a unique and original concept to the story, the same could be said about the cast.

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Jill Harris As Charlie the Princess of Hell

Born on 1994 in Clarksville, Tennessee, Jill began her voice acting career with her first game, Loren The Amazon Princess as Myrth. She went on to become a regular voice actor for Funimation projects such as SSSS.Gridman, Overlord III, Black Clover & KanColle: Kantai Collection.

Charlie’s singing voice is Britsh singer and actress, Elsie Lovelock.                                                                     


Monica-Franco

Monica Franco As Vaggie, Charlie’s love interest.

According to her IMDB profile, she’s worked on various web series such as JonTron, Final Fantasy VII: MachinabridgedVampire Pixel in the Neon City alongside, HotDiggedyDemon’s Luigi’s Day Out and Pony.Mov                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              


Micheal_KovachMichael Kovach As Angel Dust, a resident of Hell and former gay porn star.

According to his IMDB profile, Kovach began his professional career in 2014 with his first project being, Danganwrestling as Monokuma, Goldust & Paul Heyman. He later went on to voice numerous characters in video games such as Lucid9: Inciting Incident, Highway Blossoms, and an upcoming 3D platformer/puzzle game, Billie Bust Up.                

                                                                     


           

                                                                                  Edward Bosco As Alastor, also know as ‘The Radio Demon’Edward_b

Born on 1986 in Chicago, Illinois, Edward began his career with MMORPG video game, Vindictus. He went on to voice Aharah in Dust: An Elysian Tail and in later years worked on Bang! Zoom Entertainment projects such as Sword Art Online, Hunter x Hunter, Gods Eater Burst and B: The Beginning.

Alastor’s singing voice is voice actor, Odell Atkinson.

 

Other voice actors include Joshua Tomar (Tom Trench), Krystal LaPorte (Cherry Bomb), and Vivienne Medrano (additional voices).

During Anime Expo 2019, we interviewed voice actress Faye Mata voice of Katie Killjoy, who spoke with us about her career and her role in Hazbin Hotel.

Now that pilot episode is completed and released, its only matter of time before it gets picked up by a major network or if, Vivienne and her team will continue to Self-produce the series with the help of loyal fans. For more updates, exclusive Hazbin Hotel content and other exciting news, follow Vivienne on Twitter. Watch the pilot episode below, make to read till the end of this article for a special giveaway:

In the meantime, fans can rejoice in Hazbin Hotel merchandise that is now available. Pins, sketchbooks, and shirts are all available on VivziePop’s official SharkRobot account.

GIVEAWAY

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Share our post on social media and Win!

Just share this post on ANY social media platform using #HazbinHotelTKN, and you’ll be automatically entered to win this, Portrait of Angel Dust Pin designed by artist, CalMoray. The winner will be announced on Dec 1st on our FACEBOOK page.

Don’t wanna wait? You can purchase the very limited stock, portrait of Angel pin, on Vivziepop’s shop here.

Studio TRIGGER’s first film, PROMARE in theaters | English Cast Announced | GKIDS Films

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PROMARE marks the very first feature film from Studio TRIGGER, founded by former studio Gainax animator and director Hiroyuki Imaishi. Imaishi credits include the award-winning TV series GURREN LAGANN and critically acclaimed KILL la KILL.

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FORBES.COM (CREDIT: OLLIE BARDER)

GKIDS and Fathom Events bring PROMARE to U.S. theaters nationwide for special event screenings on September 17th and 19th, followed by a theatrical release in New York and Los Angeles on September 20, 2019. For more information and to purchase movie tickets, visit their PROMARE’s ticket website here.

GKIDS has announced the English voice cast for PROMARE. The film will feature the voices of Billy Kametz (NEON GENESIS Series), Johnny Yong Bosch (BLEACH, AKIRA, MIGHTY MORPHIN POWER RANGERS), Crispin Freeman (MIRAI), and Alyson Leigh Rosenfeld (POKEMON, YU-GI-OH!), among others.

English Voice Cast

Billy Kametz – Galo Thymos
Johnny Yong Bosch – Lio Fotia
Crispin Freeman – Kray Foresight
Alyson Leigh Rosenfeld — Aina Ardebit
Neil Kaplan — Vulcan Haestus
Erica Lindbeck  — Heris Ardebit
Kari Wahlgren  — Lucia Fex     
Steve Blum  — Ignis Ex
Mike Pollock  — Deus Prometh
John Bentley  — Varys Truss    
Billy Bob Thompson — Remi Puguna   
Matt Mercer — Gueira  
Yuri Lowenthal  –Meis
Melissa Fahn  — Biar Colossus

PROMARE Synopsis is as follows:

Thirty years has passed since the appearance of Burnish, a race of flame-wielding mutant beings, who destroyed half of the world with fire. When a new group of aggressive mutants calling themselves “Mad Burnish” appears, the epic battle between Galo Thymos, a new member of the anti-Burnish rescue team “Burning Rescue,” and Lio Fotia, the leader of “Mad Burnish” begins. PROMARE uses a bold cel-shaded visual style to tell a blistering action-adventure story and is the spiritual successor to many of director Hiroyuki Imaishi’s former works.

Anime Expo 2019: The calm before the Storm

Ever wondered how the Los Angeles Convention Center looks like without thousands of Anime Expo attendees? We went to the convention center early during the week of Anime Expo 2019 and captured some of the empty rooms and corridors.

Outside the convention center during Day -1, No lines. Day -1 was dedicated to setting up AX and badge pick up for exhibitors and guests.

As seen in the photos, AX staff were still setting up in preparation for Day 0. Empty, the convention center’s size and beauty really stand out.

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Stay tuned for our upcoming article on Anime Expo 2019 and our Anime Expo 2019 interview with voice actress, Faye Mataand Hotel Hazbin creator, Vivienne Medrano! This and more coming soon!

MIRAI AND THE WORKS OF MAMORU HOSODA | Gallery Nucleus Exhibit

Gallery Nucleus held a special exhibition in honour of Mamoru Hosoda works, featuring artwork from his various filmed such as Wolf Children, The Boy and the Beast, The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, and more recently, Mirai.

Check out Hosoda’s inspiration for drawing here. Brought to you by GKIDS Films.

         

AniManga 2018

AniManga (Not to be confused with AniManga held in Melbourne, Australia) is a summer oriented, 3 day anime convention held at Fairplex in Pomona, California. AniManga, Founded in 2017, is combines Anime & Manga AND gaming into a fun weekend and was first held on August 3rd – 5th 2018.

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AniManga’s Entrance

A relatively low-key convention, AniManga began with a slow start however it rapidly picked up on Saturday with many cosplayers and guests joining the fun.

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AniManga’s interactive Inflatable Wrecking Ball & Maze Game

For those whom never been to Fairplex, Fairplex is compose of different ‘halls’ and sections. AniManga was held in Hall 4 which is a fairly big hall:

AniManga’s voice actor Guests included: Max Mittelman, Kyle McCarley, Zach Aguilar & Josh Grelle.

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Me, Zach Aguilar & Cosplayer: Mystic Taku

While at there, we had the honor of interviewing voice actor Josh Grelle:

Overall, our experience at AniManga was good. It began slow and picked up Saturday. Only time will tell if they’ll become bigger and better. We will most definitely return next year. Take a look at their website for upcoming detail for AniManga 2019.

Indivisible: First Look

Teaser Animated trailer released during Anime expo 2018. Animation by Studio Trigger known for Kill La Kill.

Indivisible is an upcoming, fighting RPG game made by Lab Zero Games, the same developers who made Skullgirls. Although Skullgirls focuses on mainly on fighting skills, Indivisible expands to the platform/RPG genre.

Indivisible produced by 505 Games

Indivisible was initially announced back in Anime Expo 2015 during a Skullgirls panel. On October 5th 2015, Lab Zero Games launched a crowdfunding campaign for $1.5 million dollars to produce an entire full game. Then on November 23, 2015, the Indivisible demo was released on Steam, generally receiving positive reviews and by December 2nd of that same year, the crowdfunding campaign was reached its goal of $1.5 million.

Screen shot from the demo. Download the game on Steam here.

Being a huge fan of the artwork that Lab Zero Games produces in their games, I decided to try the demo out myself. Just as their previous game, Skullgirls, Indivisible was produced using 2D, hand-drawn, techniques. Which in MY opinion Indivisible has one of the best hand animations, it has a art style that is more modern, and unlike other games such as, Cuphead which was meant to mimic the 1930s art style, Indivisible is a more modern rendition of that concept. Of course Cuphead is different genre. In comparison, Wakfu, produce by Ankama Games, is another game that is similar to Indivisible in that they both have similar art styles, though have very different gameplays:

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Left: Wakfu (Produce in Adobe Flash); Right: Indivisible (Produce using hand drawn 2D traditional animation)

There are many things about Indivisible that I loved, however its art direction and its gameplay is what got me mesmerized. The mixture of beautiful natural artistic direction, the detailed characters & the energetic cast alongside the dynamic Lab Zero Games team make the game a remarkable experience to play.
Unfortunately, Lab Zero Games fans will have to wait a bit along as the game’s initial release date, January 2018, was pushed back to some time in mid 2019. Although a specific date hasn’t been set yet.

Delayed set back to 2019 confirm by Lab Zero Games

For now, the demo is available on steam for FREE download and you can visit the game’s official website to be updated on its process here.

GIVEAWAY!

In honour of Indivisible, we’ve are giving away an official Indivisible Original Soundtrack CD brought to you by Lab Zero Games. Indivisible’s in-game music is composed by Hiroki Kikuta, who has worked in Super Nintendo’s Secret of Mana, Seiken Densetsu 3, Soul Calibur V & Koudelka.

 

How to win:
Like our facebook page here & Share this article via Twitter or Facebook using the #TKNIndivisible tag. You’ll automatically be entered to win this exclusive Indivisible Original Soundtrack CD. You have until August 11th 2018 to enter! The winner will be announced on August 12th 2018 via our facebook page. Good luck!

ANIME EXPO 2018

Anime Expo 2018 was a complete success!

AX18Day1.jpg For the 27th time, Anime Expo came back with full force from July 4th – July 8th drawing fans from 70 different countries. This year over 110,000 people attended Anime Expo, thats 2,342 more attendees than in Anime Expo 2017, making a local economic impact of $100 million to the city of Los Angeles.

Although Anime Expo went off without a hitch, there were a few slight inconveniences.

Before Anime Expo even began, they were altered to a possible threat made against AX and its attendees. According to Anime New Network, the threat was made by a man who allegedly stated via text, “These cons are due for a high school shooting, by a high school kidd [sic]. I’m working on a case at the moment. Shit u [sic] not.” although he did not specifically stated Anime Expo as a target, Anime Expo responded by promptly by ‘alerting local law enforcement to take appropriate actions in accordance with their procedures.‘ in a statement the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA) said:

“Just as in 2017, we are working with security teams and local law enforcement, including K9 teams and traffic control officers, to maintain the safety of our event. Additionally, as previously announced, we are utilizing RFID badges for AX this year and will have security checks at each entrance. We encourage attendees to check our mobile app and maps to get familiarized with the various designated entrances.”

Thankfully, AX came and went without incident. Although the seriousness of this threat wasn’t felt among con goers; With public shootings happening all over the country on a daily basis, ‘indirect’ threats such as these, should NOT be taken with grain of salt. Though it may be a slight inconvenience, security checks at AX do their job by preventing such incidents to ever happen. If you would like to read more details on this situation please read Anime News Network’s article here.

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Moving on to more lighter but heated topics:

Los Angeles suffered a huge heat wave during day 2 & day 3 of Anime Expo with temperatures reaching up to 108°. Although the convention center had functioning air conditioning, outside the heat was unbearable. Mailing AX badges eliminated “LineCon” or the long tedious, on-site registration line. Attendees were still not happy about waiting in line to get inside the convention center due to bag checks. Attendees also took to social to suggest that Anime Expo should cap their tickets due to overcrowding.

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Do agree that Anime Expo should cap their badges? leave a comment below, we’d love to hear your opinions.

Be as it may, the heatwave was no match for hard working, determined cosplayers, whom in the middle of the scorching sun, went all out in their cosplays. Check these awesome cosplays:

We interviewed some of these wonderful cosplayers and this is what they had to say, about why they attended Anime Expo 2018 and how we dealt with the heat weave:

Before I jump on to a different topic, a HUGE  shoutout to these guys at Alove yogurt, who, in the middle of the scorching sun, passed out these delicious yogurts to con goers

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Thanks guys! (Peach Flavor was the best!)


In addition to the 110K attendees,  over 150 guests and industry made appearances including, Go Nagai, Hiromi Wakabayashi, Mari Okada, Sean Danconia, Santa Inoue, and SUSHIO. Booths also held guest appearances as with, Project Sekai who had Nekopara’s creator, Sayori in attendance for fan autographs.

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Since taking photos of Sayori was prohibited, here’s her signature dedicated to me, Krystal.

The Exhibit & Entertainment Halls also featured more than 524 Exhibitors (74 Exhibitors more than AX 2017) Among them was AnimePls, a new Anime brand that is dedicated to bringing you exclusive merchandise from various anime series including: Hatsune Miku, Attack On Titan, Yugioh, My Hero Academia & Aggretsuko! Check their booth from AX 2018.

Near the end of Anime Expo; Funimation and LootCrate collaborated on an AX Afterparty held at the Globe Theater in Downtown Los Angeles during the night of Day 3.

Attendees able to receive a free goodie bag which contained Loot Crate exclusives

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There were so many things that went down at this year’s anime. From newly produced anime series to exclusive Anime Expo events and merchandise. If you missed out this year, don’t worry, Anime Expo will be back in 2019! Tickets are now on sale! For now enjoy our entire Anime Expo 2018 photoset:

Special Thanks to:

  • Anime Expo & Anime Expo Press Staff
  • The Anime Pls Team
  • Cosplayer, Mystic Taku
  • Luis Alexander &
  • My wonderful assistant, Vincent Reyes