With Dada Chen at NYAFF 2013

With Dada Chen at NYAFF 2013
With Dada Chen at NYAFF 2013

Sunday, May 31, 2015

New York Japan CineFest 2015 short film event set for June 4th and 5th

Asia Society NY
and
Mar Creation, Inc.
Co-present
  New York Japan CineFest 2015
When: June 4 and 5, 2015
Where: Asia Society and Museum
725 Park Avenue (just above East 70th Street)
Map

Highlighting some of the most exciting new voices in cinema, New York Japan CineFest is an annual event that features works by emerging Japanese and Japanese American filmmakers. Two programs of short films are presented in this year's edition. Program 1 on Thursday, June 4 is followed by a reception. Program 2 on Friday, June 5 is followed by a discussion.

Tickets: $8 members; $10 students/seniors; $12 nonmembers.

Program 1
Thursday, June 4, 2015, 6:30 pm

A Warm Spell
Dir. Toshimichi Saito. 2014. Japan. 40 min.

Little Kyota Errand Hood
Dir. Satsuki Okawa. 2014. Japan. 20 min.

Tadaima
Dir. Robin Takao D'Oench. 2014. Japan. 15 min.

Confession Ranking of Girlfriend
Dir. Shinichiro Ueda. 2014. Japan. 19 min.

Program 1 will be followed by a reception. Click here for more information.

Program 2
Friday, June 5, 2015, 6:30 pm

Monk By Blood
Dir. Ema Ryan Yamazaki. 2013. Japan. 25 min.

Reflection
Dir. Hazuki Aikawa. 2014. Japan. 23 min.

Tsuyako
Dir. Mitsuyo Miyazaki. 2011. Japan. 25 min.

Oh Lucy!
Dir. Atsuko Hirayanagi. 2014. Japan. 21 min.

Program 2 will be followed by a discussion. Click here for more information.


Part of Citi series on Asian Arts and Culture.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

THE LADIES OF THE HOUSE

The Ladies of the House
Directed by John Stuart Wildman
Written by Justina Walford and John Stuart Wildman
2014, 93 minutes

Although it's not in any way an Asian film, The Ladies of the House is a really good grindhouse film that I enjoyed and think many AsianCineFest readers will be interested in seeing. Written by the husband and wife team of Justina Walford and John Stuart Wildman, the film marks the directorial debut of Mr. Wildman. Gravitas Ventures picked up the North American distribution rights and the movie recently became available on VOD.

The story concerns three young men and four young women. The guys have gone to a men's club to celebrate Kai's birthday. Kai (RJ Hanson) is rather obese and of limited intellectual capacity. Jacob (Gabriel Horn) is his handsome brother and Derek (Samrat Chakrabarti) is their friend who's convinced that he knows it all when it comes to women.

Derek gets the other two to agree to follow Ginger (Michelle Sinclair), one of the club's dancers, home so that Kai can have a sexual experience on his big day. See, Derek is convinced that all of her ilk are willing to have sex for money. Things don't proceed as planned and Ginger ends up getting shot.

Lin (Farah White) at work in the kitchen

Her three housemates, who also work at the club, arrive home before the guys can leave. Discovering the wounded  Ginger, they effectively have the guys trapped inside the house. This doesn't bode well for the guys as the women have some very strange and creepy -- not to mention bloody -- predilections when it comes to men.

Lin (Farah White) and Getty (Melodie Sisk) are lovers, while Crystal (Brina Palencia) is a sweet thing who has a somewhat innocent fondness for men. They have a "special" room in the house that harbors some terrifying secrets.

So it goes without saying that the The Ladies of the House follows some of the conventions of the grindhouse genre. But -- and this is really where it shines -- it subverts some of the viewers' expectations and keeps them guessing. Sure, you know there's going to be a significant body count, but just who's going to be left standing remains in doubt right until the end.

The Ladies of the House is smart, sexy and psychologically harrowing. It's a credit to the husband and wife co-writers and a fine directorial debut for Wildman.

AsianCineFest Rating: 3 out of 4 stars; very solidly recommended

Friday, May 29, 2015

1000 Treasure Hunters outdoor puzzle solving attraction will return for the 2015 J-POP SUMMIT in August

1000 Treasure Hunters players at the 2014 J-POP SUMMIT.
2015 J-POP SUMMIT TO PRESENT A NEW EDITION
OF 1000 TREASURE HUNTERS BY SCRAP

Ingenious Outdoor Scavenger Hunt/Puzzle Game Returns For The Bay
Area’s Biggest Japanese Pop Culture Celebration With A New Edition

The 2015 J-POP SUMMIT, the Japanese pop culture celebration held annually in San Francisco, is proud to partner once again with SCRAP Entertainment to present – 1000 Treasure Hunters 2015 – a brand new incarnation of the popular outdoor mass puzzle solving attraction that will make its North American debut at the Festival. SCRAP is the Kyoto-based creative company that also developed the Real Escape Game which has become an international phenomenon.

The 2015 J-POP SUMMIT will take place Saturday and Sunday August 8th & 9th at the historic Fort Mason Center in San Francisco’s Marina district. This year, the Festival begins with an Opening Night Premiere Screening event on Friday August 7th at The Castro Theatre, presented in partnership with the 2015 Japan Film Festival of San Francisco. Tickets and V.I.P Passes to the 2015 J-POP SUMMIT are available now at: www.J-POP.com.

Throughout the weekend, attendees can enjoy a colorful assortment of Japanese pop-influenced culture, fashion, pop art, live music, technology and travel that will be complemented by celebrity Guests of Honor, anime programming, cosplay and pop idol contests, and a wide assortment of vendors and other programming.

The 1000 Treasure Hunters first debuted at the 2013 J-POP SUMMIT and quickly became festival favorite. Advanced tickets to 1000 Treasure Hunters 2015 go on sale on Tuesday, June 9th through Friday, August 7th for $30.00 each at: http://realescapegame.com/1000TH2015/; Day-of tickets purchased at J-POP SUMMIT will be $35.00 each. Each ticket also includes admission to 2015 J-POP SUMMIT at Fort Mason (limited to the day of participation in the game).

Legions of players of all ages are invited to take part in a unique interactive puzzle hunt and search for dozens of clues and puzzles ingeniously hidden throughout the Fort Mason Festival Pavilion grounds. Players begin at check-in with the J-POP SUMMIT Registration Reception Team, located at the entrance of the Festival, any time between 11:00am and 5:00pm during each day of the Festival. Players must bring a valid photo ID and their printed ticket with barcode or downloaded to a smartphone to pick up game materials.

Players will receive a “kit” containing clues, hints, and a detailed map of the Fort Mason Pavilion that will become the “game area.” This treasure hunt is not a “race to victory game.’ There is no time limit. No special skills are needed, just astute cognition skills and a keen sense of logic. Players should keep their eyes peeled because clues can be anywhere, in plain sight or hidden, both outdoors across the entire J-POP Summit Festival grounds. Players may work individually or in teams. As each clue is solved, players/teams will move on to the next location where the ongoing mystery leads. Game play runs between 2-4 hours depending on players/teams. A solution debriefing session and lottery to recognize the grand winner will be held on Sunday, August 9th as the last event of daytime program on the J-POP SUMMIT Fort Mason Stage.

“The Real Escape Game and 1000 Treasure Hunters both made their U.S. debuts at J-POP SUMMIT and at the NEW PEOPLE venue in Japantown, which continues to host the Real Escape Game attraction,” says Seiji Horibuchi, Chairman of J-POP SUMMIT and Founder of NEW PEOPLE. “These games have thrilled, stumped and captivated thousands of players and drawn wide acclaim for their ingenuity. We look forward to new as well as veteran fans of 1000 Treasure Hunters joining us at J-POP SUMMIT for the fun of the latest edition.”


Thursday, May 28, 2015

JAPAN CUTS 2015 coming July 9-19

100 Yen Love
JAPAN CUTS: Festival of New Japanese Film
When: July 9–19, 2015
Where: Japan Society NY
333 East 47th Street, NYC

North America’s largest festival of new Japanese film returns for its 9th exciting edition! Premiering features never before seen in New York from blockbusters to independents, the always thrilling festival redefines itself with fresh sections on anime, documentary, and avant-garde, new classics, and more special guest stars and auteurs.

Centerpiece Presentation:
North American Premiere of Shingo Wakagi's Asleep
North American Premiere of Masaharu Take’s 100 Yen Love, featuring star Sakura Ando, recipient of the CUT ABOVE Award for Outstanding Performance in Film

Select titles:
U.S. Premiere of Nobuhiko Obayashi’s Seven Weeks
North American Premiere of Sho Tsukikawa’s I Alone

Stay tuned for more announcements: the full lineup will be revealed in June at japansociety.org/japancuts and here at AsianCineFest!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Shojo manga SO CUTE IT HURTS!! coming June 2nd from VIZ Media

KOBAYASHI GA KAWAISUGITE TSURAI!! © 2012 Go IKEYAMADA/SHOGAKUKAN
VIZ MEDIA LAUNCHES GENDER-BENDING SHOJO MANGA
SO CUTE IT HURTS!!

High School Romantic Comedy About Identity-Swapping
Twins That Get More Than They Bargained For
Launches In Print And Digitally In June

VIZ Media delivers a brand new shojo manga (graphic novel) series with the launch of SO CUTE IT HURTS!! on June 2nd.

The gender-bending comedy about a twin brother and sister who switch identities was created by Go Ikeyamada and will be rated ‘T’ for Teens. SO CUTE IT HURTS!! will be published in print under the Shojo Beat imprint and will carry an MSRP of $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN. The series also launches digitally on June 2nd via VIZManga.com and the VIZ Manga App as well as from the Nook, Kobo, Kindle, iBooks, comiXology, and GooglePlay stores. Future volumes will be published on a bi-monthly basis.

SO CUTE IT HURTS!! introduces readers to the Kobayashi twins, Megumu and Mitsuru, who were named after historical figures. But only Megumu has grown up with a taste for history. So when Mitsuru is in danger of losing his weekends to extra history classes, he convinces his sister to swap clothes with him and ace his tests! After all, how hard can it be for them to play each other?

In the opening volume, Megumu can’t rely on just her book smarts in Mitsuru’s all-boys, delinquents’ paradise of a high school. And Mitsuru finds life as a high school girl to be much more complicated than he expected!

“Go Ikeyamada’s hilarious comedy SO CUTE IT HURTS!! has become a major hit in Japan due to its charming ensemble cast and cheeky, fun story,” says Editor Pancha Diaz. “Revel in Megumu’s and Mitsuru’s struggle to navigate the complexities of high school life and the nuances of teenage romance while trying to keep their true identities secret. We can’t wait to for fans to fall in love with this hilarious new series in English this summer!”

Manga creator Go Ikeyamada's debut manga, Get Love!!, appeared in Japan in Shojo Comic magazine in 2002. Her current series, SO CUTE IT HURTS!!, is now published in English by VIZ Media.

For additional information on SO CUTE IT HURTS or other manga titles published by VIZ Media, visit www.VIZ.com.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Romantic drama, LOST FOR WORDS available on DVD & VOD June 23rd


The multi-lingual, cross-cultural, romantic drama Lost for Words – which was well received on the international film festival circuit and in limited theatrical release in the U.S. – will be available on DVD and VOD June 23 from Green Apple Entertainment.

Against the sweeping cityscape of cosmopolitan Hong Kong, a damaged ex-Marine falls for a beautiful and talented Chinese ballerina after a chance encounter. As political, cultural and religious pressures mount, how far are they willing to go to remain together? Starring: Sean Faris (Never Back Down), Grace Huang (The Man With the Iron Fists), Will Yun Lee (The Wolverine, CBS’ Hawaii Five-0, Total Recall), Terence Yin (Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, Robin-B-Hood) and noted Hong Kong actress Joman Chiang (Fog, The Drunkard).

Monday, May 25, 2015

RANMA ½ ANIME SERIES SET 6 limited edition Blu-ray set on June 2

©Rumiko Takahashi / Shogakukan
 VIZ MEDIA ANNOUNCES HOME MEDIA RELEASE OF
RANMA ½ ANIME SERIES SET 6
LIMITED EDITION BLU-RAY SET

Zany Comedy And Martial Arts Action Continue In
Latest High-Definition Episodes Of The Legendary
Anime Series, Available In A Special Blu-Ray
Collectable Or Standard Edition DVD Set

VIZ Media prepares a fresh round of RANMA ½ anime episodes for home media release in crisp high-definition with the debut of RANMA ½ Set 6 on June 2nd.

VIZ Media is releasing the gender-bending martial arts action comedy in the original Japanese series order across seven Limited Edition Blu-ray and Standard Edition DVD Box Sets. RANMA ½ is rated TV-14 and is based on the popular manga series originally created by Rumiko Takahashi. Notable bonus features include fan interviews highlighting the RANMA ½ phenomenon and an episode summary booklet.

The RANMA ½ Limited Edition Blu-ray Box Set 6 carries an MSRP of $54.97 U.S. / $63.99 CAN. The latest set contains Episodes 116-138 on 3 discs, presented in full 1080p high-definition resolution with the series’ original, un-cropped 4:3 aspect ratio. Subtitled and English dubbed dialogue options are available. The Blu-ray edition also contains a full color art card and a 32-page booklet with individual episode summaries.

Blu-ray bonus features include clean openings and endings as well as series trailers and special “We Love Ranma Part 6 - We Love Working on RANMA ½” and “We Love Ranma Part 7 – We Love Bloopers” segments. The set comes in a gorgeously illustrated chipboard box with embossed foil stamping.

The RANMA ½ Standard Edition DVD Set 6 also features 23 episodes with the original, un-cropped 4:3 aspect ratio, with bonus features that include clean openings and endings and trailers. Subtitled and English dubbed dialogue options are available. The Standard Edition DVD set is available with an MSRP of $44.82 U.S. / $51.99 CAN.

The mayhem continues in RANMA ½ Set 6! A mysterious young man who uses pantyhose as a weapon steals the Jusenkyo guestbook and kidnaps Akane. In order to save her, Ranma teams up with Ryoga, Mousse, and Shampoo, but the young man, like Ranma, also undergoes a transformation when splashed with cold water! After that, monsters escape from strange hanging scrolls and cause chaos around town! The only way to stop them is for Ranma to go on a date with a scribbled panda that has also come out of a scroll! Finally, Ukyo stays at the Tendo Dojo to recover from the shock of a ruined okonomiyaki sauce that has been marinating for ten years. Could Ranma, who is acting strangely kind around Ukyo, have something to do with that too?

RANMA ½ manga creator Rumiko Takahashi is one of Japan’s most prolific and respected manga artists and is the creator of several long running series including MAISON IKKOKU, RANMA ½, and INUYASHA – all published in North America by VIZ Media. The spotlight on her prolific career began in 1978 when she won an honorable mention in Shogakukan's annual New Comic Artist Contest for Those Selfish Aliens. Later that same year, her boy-meets-alien comedy series, Urusei Yatsura, was serialized in Weekly Shonen Sunday. This phenomenally successful manga series was adapted into anime format and also spawned a TV series and half a dozen theatrical-release movies, all incredibly popular. Takahashi followed up the success of her debut series with one blockbuster hit after another— MAISON IKKOKU ran from 1980 to 1987, RANMA ½ from 1987 to 1996, and INUYASHA from 1996 to 2008. Other notable works include MERMAID SAGA, RUMIC THEATER, ONE-POUND GOSPEL, and RIN-NE (all also published in North America by VIZ Media).

For more information on RANMA ½ or other award-winning anime titles from VIZ Media, visit www.VIZ.com.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Sentai Filmworks announces launch of new product line SENTAI SELECTS

SENTAI FILMWORKS® LAUNCHES SENTAI SELECTS™
New Product Line to Include Classic Anime Titles

Sentai Filmworks has announced an exciting new line of products that provides fans with essential programming with a budget conscience experience.

Sentai Selects™ will showcase anime that have withstood the test of time to remain popular and memorable works of their genre. A wide variety of titles have been included in the line to assure that something fresh and different is available for every release, while also being curated specifically to give fans an opportunity to discover new experiences without breaking the bank. This new line of titles will offer reversible cover artwork and other features where applicable.

“The Sentai Selects line was created for those who have recently become interested in anime and wish to expand their libraries with classic shows, as well as those who may have missed their chance to own these titles during their first run”, said David Del Rio, Vice President of Sentai Filmworks. “Our hope is to provide an ideal situation where both new and old fans alike can enjoy these must own anime at an affordable entry price.”

The debut release will be the sci-fi action movie Appleseed and will include enhanced Blu-ray audio and double-sided cover artwork.

Appleseed explores the society of Earth's last city, Olympus, which rose from the ashes of global war on the backs of Bioroids, artificial clones who make up half the city's population. Under the guidance of a supercomputer, humanity's last survivors enjoy peace, but only on the surface. Human terrorists within the military seek a return to power and clash with the government's forces led by Deunan, a legendary soldier and Brialeos, who is more machine than human.

More titles in the Sentai Selects™ line will soon be available.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Initial details for 14th New York Asian Film Festival have been announced!!!

FILM SOCIETY OF LINCOLN CENTER and SUBWAY CINEMA
Announce initial details for
THE 14th NEW YORK ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL
June 26 – July 11, 2015

Director Ringo Lam will be presented with the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award, superstar Aaron Kwok with the 2015 Star Asia Award, and Japanese actor Shota Sometani with the 2015 Screen International Rising Star Award

Film lineup to include the North American premieres of Nobuhiro Yamashita's La La La at Rock Bottom and Yim Soon-rye's The Whistleblower and the international premiere of Namewee’s Banglasia, which was banned in Malaysia

A spotlight on Myung Films and Korean women filmmakers and a joint film tribute to Japanese legends Ken Takakura and Bunta Sugawara are among the notable sidebars

The New York Asian Film Festival (NYAFF), North America’s leading festival of popular Asian Cinema, is back for its 14th edition. Co-presented with Film Society of Lincoln Center and Subway Cinema, the festival will run from June 26 to July 11. The festival takes place from June 26 to July 8 at the Film Society and July 9 to 11 at SVA Theatre (333 W. 23rd Street). Initial details include notable awards to be presented to director Ringo Lam, superstar Aaron Kwok, and actor Shota Sometani. The festival will also host a slew of North American film premieres, as well as spotlight the works of Korean female directors and honor the memory of Japanese legends Ken Takakura and Bunta Sugawara with a joint tribute.

Hong Kong’s legendary director Ringo Lam (City on Fire) will receive the 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award. One of Hong Kong’s most influential directors, Lam was directing comedies when City on Fire was released in 1987, fusing the social-protest movie with kinetic action filmmaking. It was followed by the massive hit Prison on Fire later that year, and then School on Fire, a movie so unblinking that nervous Hong Kong censors sliced it to ribbons. Lam became one of the city’s best action filmmakers, and one of the few local directors to be so deeply concerned with the price of progress, the corrosive influence of money on human relationships, and the lives of the little people crushed beneath the wheels of change. In 2003, he directed what was to be his final feature and went into semi-retirement, only to be lured out again in 2015 with Wild City, in which Lam’s tooth-and-claw vision of modern urban living remains untamed.

Hong Kong’s superstar actor-singer Aaron Kwok (Divergence, After This Our Exile, Cold War) will receive the festival’s 2015 Star Asia Award on June 26. One of Hong Kong’s Four Heavenly Kings of Cantopop, Kwok has won dozens of awards for his chart-topping albums. For over 30 years, he has performed steadily both on television and in movies and is respected for his box-office star power as well as his outstanding acting chops. Kwok has worked with some of Hong Kong’s finest directors, like Johnnie To, Jacob Cheung, Andrew Lau, and Patrick Tam. His self-described Method acting was rewarded in 2005 and 2006 when he won back-to-back Golden Horse awards for Best Actor, a feat previously achieved only by Jackie Chan. Kwok was awarded his first Best Actor prize was for his performance in 2005’s Divergence, but it was his work in the 2006 After This Our Exile, for which he won his second award, that blew audiences away. In that film, Kwok’s fearless portrayal of a gambling addict exhibited a serious commitment to his craft as well as a complete lack of vanity. He then went on to give a series of startling performances in films like Yim Ho’s Floating City, the blockbuster Cold War, as well as his upcoming tour de force, Port of Call.

Japanese actor Shota Sometani will attend the festival on July 4, on the occasion of the New York premiere of Kabukicho Love Hotel, to receive the Screen International Rising Star Award. Director Ryuichi Hiroki will also be in attendance. This marks the second year of a partnership with Screen International, with whom the NYAFF will honor an emerging talent in the East Asian film world each year. At age 22, Sometani is already a leading man in both blockbusters and indie gems and has earned critical acclaim on the international film festival circuit. In 2011, he received the Marcello Mastroianni Award for Best New Young Actor at the Venice Film Festival for his performance in Himizu, along with his co-star Fumi Nikaido (last year’s recipient of the Screen International Rising Star Award).

Notable NYAFF titles this year will include the North American premieres of Nobuhiro Yamashita's La La La at Rock Bottom and Yim Soon-rye's The Whistleblower and the international premiere of Namewee’s Banglasia, which was banned in Malaysia, its home country.

The festival will also feature a section on Korea’s production company Myung Films, highlighting a few of their major works—Cart, The President’s Last Bang, The Isle, and Waikiki Brothers—as part of a greater focus on women who work behind the camera. Producer Shim Jae-myung and directors Yim Soon-rye (The Whistleblower) and Boo Ji-young (Cart) will be in attendance.

Japanese film legends Ken Takakura and Bunta Sugawara, both of whom passed away last November, will be the subject of the first joint tribute outside of Japan, which will feature the brand-new digital remaster of the 1973 classic Battles Without Honor and Humanity—screened for the time in North America—among others.

Keep up with the latest festival news at:
www.facebook.com/NYAFF, www.subwaycinema.com, twitter: @subwaycinema (#NYAFF15)

Tickets will go on sale on June 9 for Film Society Members and June 11 for general public, both at the box office and online. Discounts are available for Film Society members. Read more about the Film Society of Lincoln Center.

Screenings will be held at the Film Society of Lincoln Center's Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street, between Amsterdam and Broadway), and SVA Theatre (333 West 23rd Street, between 8th and 9th Avenues).

10th anniversary of Shojo Beat imprint

VIZ MEDIA MARKS THE 10TH ANNIVERSARY
OF THE SHOJO BEAT IMPRINT

Celebrate 10 Years Of Shojo Manga In North America With
First-Ever U.S. Appearance Of KAMISAMA KISS
Creator Along With Convention Exclusives
And Upcoming Shojo Manga Series Debuts

VIZ Media prepares to celebrate a special milestone with shojo manga fans and a special guest this summer. The company’s Shojo Beat imprint marks its 10th Anniversary and celebrates many more years of great shojo manga to come with a host of activities, creator appearances and special promotions taking place at upcoming major summertime conventions including Anime Expo, San Diego Comic-Con and Otakon.

Kamisama Hajimemashita © Julietta Suzuki 2008/HAKUSENSHA,Inc.

VIZ Media will partner with the 2015 Anime Expo to present the first-ever appearance in the U.S. of Julietta Suzuki, the famed creator of KAMISAMA KISS, at the annual July event held in Los Angeles, CA. Scheduling and event information about her personal appearance will be released soon. KAMISAMA KISS is published by Shojo Beat. Fans also can check Shojo Beat’s social media channels for additional information in coming weeks:

twitter.com/shojobeat
www.facebook.com/OfficialShojoBeat
officialshojobeat.tumblr.com
www.facebook.com/OfficialVIZMedia

Julietta-Suzuki, creator of Kamisama Kiss

Julietta Suzuki's debut manga Hoshi ni Naru Hi (The Day One Becomes a Star) appeared in the 2004 Hana to Yume Plus. Her other books include Akuma to Dolce (The Devil and Sweets), Karakuri Odette, and Kamisama Kiss (Kamisama Hajimemashita), which is published by VIZ Media. Manga readers also can look forward to the upcoming launch beginning this summer of a wide variety of brand new series from the Shojo Beat imprint that will be available in print as well as digitally from VIZManga.com and the VIZ MANGA App as well as from the Nook, Kindle, Kobo, comiXology, iBooks and GooglePlay stores.

The new series include the gender-swapping hijinks of SO CUTE IT HURTS!!, paranormal drama THE DEMON PRINCE OF MOMOCHI HOUSE; the tale of an overachieving student with a double life in MAID-SAMA!, the story of a haunted high school in QQ SWEEPER, a woman’s determination to seize her chance at love and fame in IDOL DREAMS, the death-wish vampire comedy BLOODY MARY, and heartwarming romance in HONEY SO SWEET.

“VIZ Media helped pioneer the shojo manga genre in North America and also has played a pivotal role in bringing shojo content to scores of other readers around the world,” says Nancy Thistlethwaite, Senior Editor, Shojo Beat. “Since launching the Shojo Beat imprint in 2005, the genre’s popularity has grown substantially with groundbreaking series such as VAMPIRE KNIGHT, THE GENTLEMEN'S ALLIANCE CROSS, BLACK BIRD, and OURAN HIGH SCHOOL HOST CLUB. We look forward to fans celebrating 10 great years of shojo manga with us this year!”

Shojo Beat’s milestone anniversary commemorations take place this summer at Anime Expo and San Diego Comic-Con, where VIZ Media will present in-booth displays of shikishi (special Japanese art boards) featuring original artwork by a host of well-known manga creators that were created specially for the imprint’s 10th anniversary. An exclusive Shojo Beat calendar featuring artwork from various popular manga series will be given away at the VIZ Media booth at these conventions along with exclusive collectable items imported from Japan. And stay tuned for other special shojo-focused promotions, sales and fan events at these shows, as well as upcoming events held around Otakon.

Forthcoming Shojo Beat releases:

SO CUTE IT HURTS!!, Vol. 1 • Rated ‘T’ for Teens • Print MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN; Digital MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) • Available June 2nd
In this highly anticipated new series by Go Ikeyamada, the Kobayashi twins, Mego and Mitsuru, were named after historical figures, but only Mego has grown up with a taste for history. So when Mitsuru is in danger of losing his weekends to extra history classes, he convinces his sister to swap clothes with him and ace his tests! After all, how hard can it be for them to play each other?

THE DEMON PRINCE OF MOMOCHI HOUSE, Vol. 1 • Rated ‘T’ for Teens • Print MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN; Digital MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) • Available July 7th
On her sixteenth birthday, orphan Himari Momochi inherits her ancestral estate that she’s never seen. Momochi House exists on the barrier between the human and spiritual realms, and Himari is meant to act as guardian between the two worlds. But on the day she moves in, she finds three handsome squatters already living in the house, and one seems to have already taken over her role! Catch this paranormal drama by renowned creator, Aya Shouoto (KISS OF THE ROSE PRINCESS).

MAID-SAMA!, (2-in-1 Omnibus Edition) • Rated ‘T’ for Teens • Print MSRP: $14.99 U.S. / $16.99 CAN; Digital MSRP: $10.99 (U.S. / CAN) • Available August 4th
As if being class president of a predominantly male high school isn’t hard enough, Misaki Ayuzawa has a major secret – she works at a maid café after school! How is she supposed to keep her image of being ultra-smart, strong and overachieving intact once school heartthrob Takumi Usui discovers her double life?! MAID-SAMA is created by Hiro Fujiwara.

New 2015 Fall/Winter titles:

QQ SWEEPER, Vol. 1 • Rated ‘T’ for Teens • Print MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN; Digital MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) • Available October 6th
In this new series by Kyousuke Motomi (creator of BEAST MASTER and DENGEKI DAISY), Kyutaro Horikita, the tall, dark and handsome cleaning expert of Kurokado High, meets a sleeping maiden at the school: transfer student Fumi Nishioka! Fumi’s going to learn how to rid the school of nasty spirits with Kyutaro’s help, and her heart will surprisingly be “cleansed” too…

IDOL DREAMS, Vol. 1 • Rated ‘T’ for Teens • Print MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN; Digital MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) • Available November 3rd
At age 31, office worker Chikage Deguchi feels she missed her chances at love and success. When word gets out that she’s a virgin, Chikage is humiliated and wishes she could turn back time to when she was still young and popular. She takes an experimental drug that changes her appearance back to when she was 15. Now Chikage is determined to pursue everything she missed out on all those years ago –including becoming a star! IDOL DREAMS is the new series by acclaimed shojo manga creator Arina Tanemura (FULL MOON, THE GENTLEMAN’S ALLIANCE CROSS, I.O.N, TIME STRANGER KYOKO, SAKURA HIME, and PHANTOM THIEF JEANNE).

BLOODY MARY, Vol. 1 • Rated ‘T’ for Teens • Print MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN; Digital MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) • Available December 1st
Catch a heart-pounding tale of an unorthodox allegiance by creator Akaza Samamiya. “Bloody” Mary, a vampire with a death wish, has spent the past 400 years chasing down a modern-day exorcist named Maria who is thought to have inherited “The Blood of Maria” and is the only one who can kill Mary. To Mary’s dismay, Maria doesn’t know how to kill vampires. Desperate to die, Mary agrees to become Maria’s bodyguard until Maria can find a way to kill him.

HONEY SO SWEET, Vol. 1 • Rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens • Print MSRP: $9.99 U.S. / $12.99 CAN; Digital MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) • Available January 5th, 2016
HONEY SO SWEET, by new manga artist Amu Meguro, is a heartwarming story about love that begins out of an act of kindness. Little did Nao Kogure realize back in middle school that when she left an umbrella and a box of bandages in the rain for injured delinquent Taiga Onise that she would meet him again in high school. Nao wants nothing to do with the gruff and frightening Taiga, but he suddenly presents her with a huge bouquet of flowers and asks her to date him – with marriage in mind! Is Taiga really so scary, or is he a sweetheart in disguise?

For more information on Shojo Beat manga titles published by VIZ Media, visit ShojoBeat.com.

Friday, May 22, 2015

CHRONICLES OF EVIL reviewed; opens in N. American theaters today

CJ Entertainment
presents
A BA Entertainment Production
The Chronicles of Evil / Akeui Yeondaegi
Written and Directed by BAEK Woon-hak
South Korea, 2015, 102 minutes
In Korean with English subtitles

Chronicles of Evil, a terrific action thriller, opens in North American theaters today Friday, May 22nd. It can be seen Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Seattle, Vancouver, Toronto and other cities. The full theater list can be found here.

SON Hyun-joo (The Chaser, Three Days) stars as homicide police chief CHOI Chang-si. A talented officer who has served in homicide for fifteen year, he is rumored to soon receive a promotion and be assigned to Headquarters.

His men, including veteran Detective OH (MA Dong-seok, (The Good, the Bad, and the Weird, The Unjust)) and young officer CHA Dong-Jae (PARK Seo-joon, Witch’s Romance). take him out for an evening of drink and celebration. On his way home, an attempt is made on his life. However it's the assailant who ends up dead, not CHOI. Concerned that the incident will jeopardize his promotion, CHOI tries to cover up his involvement. But the death is revealed in a very public way that is extremely embarrassing to the police department. CHOI is assigned to lead the investigation, which is given highest priority.


CHOI is thus faced with the unenviable task of closing the case without revealing his involvement. The situation gets more and more complicated until a deftly handled series of reveals brings the full story into the open, at least for the viewing audience.

Chronicles of Evil is a smart and engrossing tale that kept this reviewer guessing just what was going on and why until the ending. It's a deeply satisfying movie that's more than well worth seeing in a theater.

AsianCineFest Rating: 3.5 out of 4 stars; very highly recommended

INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT home media release on May 26th

© Rumiko Takahashi/Shogakukan, Yomiuri TV, Sunrise 2009
 VIZ MEDIA ANNOUNCES HOME MEDIA RELEASE OF
INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT

Exciting Grand Finale Of The Legendary Fantasy Action
Anime Series Set For Blu-ray And DVD Release

VIZ Media will deliver the series finale of one of anime’s most venerated series with the home media release of INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT on High Definition Blu-ray and Standard Edition DVD on May 26th.

INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT is based on the bestselling fantasy adventure manga series (also published by VIZ Media, rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens) by famed creator Rumiko Takahashi. The Blu-ray and DVD editions each contain the final 26 episodes of the long running anime show along with select bonus features. Both formats feature English dubbed along with Japanese subtitled dialogue options.

The INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT Blu-ray Edition collects the entire season on 4 discs with episodes presented in full 1080p High Definition, 16x9 video. English and Japanese DTS-HD Audio options are available along with bonus features including production and storyboard art galleries and the original Japanese broadcast trailers. The MSRP is $54.97 U.S. / $63.99 CAN.

The INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT DVD Edition offers series episodes on 4 discs, presented with 16x9 standard video resolution and English and Japanese 2.0 stereo audio. Bonus features include the original Japanese series trailers. The MSRP is $44.82 U.S. / $51.99 CAN.

“INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT delivers the grand finale of Inuyasha and Kagome’s quest to restore the shattered Shikon Jewel,” says Charlene Ingram, Senior Marketing Manager, Animation. “Longtime fans can complete their INUYASHA personal anime complete with the release of THE FINAL ACT on DVD and Blu-ray and witness the epic showdown with the evil demon, Naraku, and discover the long-awaited answer to the ultimate question of Kagome and Inuyasha’s future together!”

In the thrilling conclusion to this famed anime series, Kagome is an ordinary schoolgirl who finds her destiny linked to a hotheaded but brave half demon named Inuyasha and the powerful Shikon Jewel. In their quest to restore the shattered Shikon Jewel, Inuyasha and Kagome face their ultimate enemy, the demon mastermind Naraku. Kagome finds herself pulled between two worlds as she struggles to fight alongside Inuyasha in the feudal era and study for her high school entrance exams in the present. As the battle enters its final stage, Inuyasha and his friends have their strength, loyalties and will to live pushed to the limit. The final key to Naraku's and the Jewel's destruction may lie in nothing more - and nothing less - than the trust between a half demon and a girl from the future. All roads have led here, to one last battle and one final act!

Fans also can explore an array of colorful INUYASHA art books as well as the complete manga series, which is published in North America by VIZ Media, along with the entire anime series and related INUYASHA animated feature films available on DVD.

For more information on INUYASHA and other anime and manga titles from VIZ Media, visit www.VIZ.com.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Free screening of ALIVE at Asia Society NY next Wednesday

Korean Cultural Service NY
and
Asia Society NY
co-present
Korean Movie Night New York's April - May 2015 Series
Emerging Talent
Alive
Directed by Park Jung-bum
Starring: Lee Seung-yeon, Park Jung-bum, Park Myeong-hoon
2014. South Korea. 175 minutes
In Korean with English subtitles

When: Wednesday, May 27th @ 6:30 pm
Where: The Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium at Asia Society
725 Park Avenue at 70th Street, NYC

Free Admission; all seating is first come, first served.
Doors open @ 6 pm East Coast Premiere

The last film in Korean Movie Night NY's Emerging Talent film series is Alive, which will be shown next Thursday, May 27th, 2015.

A follow up to Park Jung-bum’s powerful debut neorealist drama The Journals of Musan, Alive is a continuation of the director/writer/actor’s exploration of the issues of poverty, inequality, and human suffering in contemporary capitalist societies. In this film, he portrays a construction worker in the Gangwon province who tries to make ends meet and support his mentally unstable sister and young niece. The more effort he puts into improving their living condition, the more odds stack up against him. The film offers a powerful portrait of survival in the worst circumstances and conveys Park’s compassion for those struggling on the margins of society.

Yaoi manga publisher SuBLime to be at FanimeCon this weekend

LOVE STAGE!! Volume 1 ©Eiki EIKI 2011 ©Taishi ZAOU 2011
 Visit SuBLime At FanimeCon 2015 At Booth #1802 GLOBAL YAOI
MANGA PUBLISHER SuBLime ANNOUNCES PARTICIPATION
IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA'S BIGGEST
ANIME CONVENTION 2015 FANIMECON

Booth To Showcase Extensive Roster Of Fan-Favorite
Yaoi Manga And Feature Show Specials

SuBLime, the leading global yaoi manga publisher in the English language, announces its participation in one of Northern California's largest anime conventions - FanimeCon - taking place Memorial Day weekend, May 22nd-25th, 2015, at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, CA.

FanimeCon is Northern California's largest anime convention. Packed with nonstop video programming, extraordinary costumes, music, games, tournaments, panels, and renowned international guests, the annual celebration of Japanese art and popular culture entertains a colorful spectrum of fans and attendees. Complete details on FanimeCon are available at: www.fanime.com.

During the convention, SuBLime's Booth #1802 will offer a wide selection of fan-loved titles for sale, including the just-released series launches of THE WORLD'S GREATEST FIRST LOVE and LOVE STAGE!! (both available for a reduced price of $10), in addition to other yaoi manga favorites such as CRIMSON SPELL, EMBRACING LOVE, FALSE MEMORIES, HIDE AND SEEK, HIS FAVORITE, HONEY DARLING, along with many more. Each purchase includes a free lei (while supplies last).

THE WORLD'S GREATEST FIRST LOVE o By Shungiku Nakamura o Show Special Price: $10
When Ritsu Onodera changes jobs, looking for a fresh start, he's not exactly thrilled to learn his new boss is an old flame. Ritsu's determined to leave all that in the past-but how can he when his boss is just as determined that they have a future? In the series' opening volume, tired of accusations that family connections got him his current position, Ritsu Onodera quits his job as an editor at his father's company and transfers to Marukawa Publishing. Once there, he is assigned to the shojo manga editorial department - something he has no interest in and no experience with! Having sworn he'd never fall in love again, the last thing he wants to do is work on love stories. To make matters worse, it turns out that his overbearing boss, Masamune Takano, is actually his first love from high school!

LOVE STAGE!! o By Eiki Eiki and Taishi Zaou o Show Special Price: $10
Though his family is packed with famous celebrities, Izumi Sena is just your average guy. Currently a college student, he is a huge otaku with aspirations of becoming a manga creator. But one day he gets roped into filming a TV commercial and meets hot young actor Ryoma Ichijo. Could this be the same boy he starred in a commercial with over ten years ago?!

For up-to-date news and release information, please visit the SuBLime website at www.SuBLimeManga.com.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Sentai Filmworks announces acquisition of HAMATORA


Sentai Filmworks has announced its latest acquisition, Hamatora. An original concept of Natsu Matsumai and Yūki Kodama, this series takes place in a fictional 2014 where certain humans called Minimum Holders are discovered to have special abilities. The story focuses on Minimum Holder Nice who forms a detective agency and starts gathering a large number of allies and enemies.

Seiji Kishi, alongside Hiroshi Kimura, directed the series, while Jun Kumagai and Toko Machida provided series composition. Makoto Yoshimori, having been involved in the series Baccano! and Durarara!!, coordinated the music. Character designs were by Eriko Itō, Yū Wazu and Yūki Kodama and animation production was by NAZ.

Hamatora will be available soon through select digital outlets with a home video release to follow.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

VIZ highlihgting anime titles at upcoming 2015 Licensing Expo

VIZ MEDIA HIGHLIGHTS THE WORLD’S HOTTEST
ANIME TITLES AT 2015 LICENSING EXPO

DORAEMON, NARUTO SHIPPUDEN, JOJO’S BIZARRE ADVENTURE
And TERRAFORMARS Among The Popular Titles To Be Showcased

VIZ Media has announced plans to showcase a variety of exciting anime properties at the 2015 Licensing Expo. The 2015 Licensing Expo is the world’s largest and most influential annual licensing industry event and takes place June 9th – 11th at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, NV. VIZ Media will be located in Booth #K177.

VIZ Media is the master licensee for the massively popular NARUTO SHIPPUDEN anime and manga (graphic novel) series and the North and Latin American master merchandise licensee for the celebrated anime property, DORAEMON. The company also is the North American master merchandise licensee for products based on the JOJO’S BIZARRE ADVENTURE and TERRAFORMARS anime series. VIZ Media actively oversees the licensing and development of a comprehensive range of products based on a wide array of celebrated anime properties across several key consumer categories.

For 35 years the Licensing Expo (www.licensingexpo.com) has connected the world's most influential entertainment, character, fashion, art and corporate brand owners and agents with consumer goods manufacturers, licensees and retailers. Licensing Expo is the preeminent event for the global licensing industry. Licensing Expo attracts more than 400 exhibitors representing more than 5,000 brands and properties in entertainment; sports; fashion and apparel; publishing; art and design; automotive; animation/anime; home and housewares; and lifestyle. Attendees from more than 80 countries represent the world's leading retailers, licensees, manufacturers, distributors and licensing agents.

Anime properties VIZ Media will highlight at 2015 Licensing Expo include: 

DORAEMON (Rated ‘TV-7’)
DORAEMON is one of the most beloved character properties worldwide. The animated comedy series depicts the adventures of Doraemon, a blue robot cat from the 22nd century, who travels back in time to help a boy named Noby using various secret gadgets procured from his 4th Dimensional Pocket. Episodes often offer lessons for young viewers about honesty, cooperation, courage, and respect.

DORAEMON marks its 45th Anniversary in 2015 and continues to be a major worldwide franchise with over $500 million in annual global retail sales and over 600 active licensees. The DORAEMON brand debuted last year in North America, with a robust list of partners spanning all categories – toys, apparel, stationery, food and beverage and more – and the partner list continuing to grow. Doraemon recently also appeared at the annual Washington, D.C., Sakura Matsuri, New York City’s Japan Week, and numerous events around the country, expanding the brand’s consumer visibility and capturing the imagination of a new generation of fans. Visit the official DORAEMON web site at: doraemon.com or Facebook page at: www.facebook.com/DoraemonUS.


NARUTO SHIPPUDEN (Rated ‘TV-14’)
Created by Masashi Kishimoto, NARUTO was first introduced in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine in Japan in 1999 and quickly became that country’s most popular ninja manga properties. The manga series (rated ‘T’ for Teens, in print and digital editions) and animated counterpart (NARUTO and NARUTO SHIPPUDEN) are some of VIZ Media’s most successful titles and have captivated millions of fans across North America, Europe and South America.

The NARUTO SHIPPUDEN brand continues to grow with new partners and licensed categories, including 3D mugs, bath and household items, high fashion, figures, auto accessories, electronics and more. The latest feature film, THE LAST: NARUTO THE MOVIE, debuted theatrically with great success this spring in North America, and will expand to Latin America this month. In Latin America, NARUTO and NARUTO SHIPPUDEN enjoys widespread popularity, and VIZ Media has teamed with prominent partners to develop the property into strong multimedia brands localized for the burgeoning market.

More information on NARUTO SHIPPUDEN is available at: Naruto.com.

JOJO’S BIZARRE ADVENTURE
In the JOJO’S BIZARRE ADVENTURE anime series, the Aztecs – the people of the sun – once prospered in ancient Mexico. They had a bizarre stone mask that brought eternal life and the power of a domineering ruler to he who wore it, but at some point, the mask disappeared without a trace. Years later, in the late 19th Century, when men's lifestyles and outlooks on life were quickly changing, Jonathan Joestar and Dio Brando meet, and the stone mask binds them to a rather curious fate...

TERRAFORMARS
In TERRAFORMARS, after humanity’s first manned mission to the Red Planet was lost a second expedition arrives. The explorers prepare to exterminate the cockroaches that were used to transform the Martian environment, but are shocked to discover that the insects have mutated into giant, aggressive humanoids with one overriding goal – exterminate the humans! However, this crew of explorers has each undergone the “Bugs Procedure,” terrifying experimental surgery designed to make them more than human…

Other VIZ Media anime properties available for license include:

• BERSERK: THE GOLDEN AGE TRILOGY
• BLEACH
• DEATH NOTE
• INUYASHA: THE FINAL ACT
• K
• LAGRANGE: THE FLOWER OF RIN-NE
• NARUTO
• NARUTO SPINOFF: ROCK LEE AND HIS NINJA PALS
• TIGER & BUNNY
• VAMPIRE KNIGHT
• ZETMAN

For more information on these and other VIZ Media anime properties, visit: www.viz.com/anime.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Well Go USA announces two new Chinese language film acquisitions

Well Go USA has announced the acquisition of two new Chinese language films, The Assassin (Taiwan) and Wild City (Hong Kong).


The Assassin, starring Shu Qi and Chang Chen, heralds the long-awaited return of master filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien. The martial arts epic made John Powers' "10 Must-See Movies At This Year's Festival" in Vogue magazine (April 16th), and Well Go USA has acquired all North American rights to the film. "We have a proud history of supporting films from Taiwan, and Hou Hsiao-Hsien is a legend," said Well Go USA President/CEO Doris Pfardrescher. "It's like someone made a wish list, and we got everything we could have hoped for: Iconic director, stellar cast, and this exciting, moving story - we're very excited to bring this to North America."


Well Go has also acquired Ringo Lam's Wild City, starring Louis Koo, Simon Yam, Philip Ng, and Shawn Yue, with plans for a North American release to coincide with the July 31 theatrical date in China and Hong Kong.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Masashi Kishimoto, creator of Naruto, coming to NY events in October 2015

LEGENDARY MANGA ARTIST MASASHI KISHIMOTO TO
MAKE FIRST INTERNATIONAL APPEARANCE AT
NEW YORK COMIC CON AND NEW YORK SUPER WEEK

Creator of Naruto to Participate in Two Panels and Multiple Autograph
Sessions at East Coast’s Biggest Pop Culture Convention

ReedPOP, the world’s largest producer of pop culture events and producers of New York Comic Con, today announced that renowned manga artist Masashi Kishimoto, creator of Naruto, one of the most successful manga properties on the planet, will be appearing at New York Comic Con and New York Super Week. In what will be his first ever international appearance outside of Japan, Kishimoto will take part in two panels and multiple autograph sessions, giving fans unprecedented access. His panels will take place on Thursday, October 8 and Saturday, October 10 during New York Comic Con. He will also host autograph sessions at Kinokuniya Bookstore and Barnes & Noble as part of New York Super Week. Masashi Kishimoto is appearing at New York Comic Con with the support of VIZ Media.

Kishimoto was born in 1974 in rural Okayama Prefecture, Japan. His first version of Naruto, drawn in 1997, was a one-shot story about fox spirits; his final version, which debuted in Weekly Shonen Jump in 1999, quickly became the most popular ninja manga in the world. The series spawned multiple anime series, movies, novels, video games and more. Having concluded the series in late 2014, he has kept himself busy with the sidestory Naruto: The Seventh Hokage and the Scarlet Spring and with writing the story for the latest Naruto movie, both of which will focus on the title character’s son, Boruto. Naruto is published in North America by VIZ Media.

“Kishimoto is one of the biggest names in manga and a major influence on artists across the globe,” said Lance Fensterman, global senior vice president of ReedPOP. “We’re thrilled to have him added to our lineup this year and think fans are going to love the chance to get close to an icon.”

New York Comic Con, the crown jewel of New York Super Week, will take place October 8-11 at the Javits Center. The show is the East Coast's biggest and most exciting popular culture convention with the latest and greatest in comics, graphic novels, anime, manga, video games, toys, movies and television. The show’s panels and autograph sessions give fans a chance to interact with their favorite creators, while screening rooms feature sneak peeks at films and television shows months before they hit either big or small screens. New York Comic Con is the second largest pop culture convention in America and the only one that takes place in the comic book, publishing, media and licensing capital of the world — Gotham City. Additional exciting details about New York Comic Con and New York Super Week events, talent and sponsors will be announced in the coming weeks.

For more information, visit www.NewYorkComicCon.com and www.NewYorkSuperWeek.com.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

NEKO SAMURAI screening + Edo Cat Party at Japan Society NY

JAPAN CUTS & Japan Society Gallery
Present
Neko Samurai ~Samurai ♥ Cat~ and Edo Cat Party!
When: Saturday, May 30, 7 PM
Where: Japan Society
333 East 47th Street, NYC
Map

Neko Samurai, the JAPAN CUTS 2014 fan-favorite film is back by popular demand to celebrate the Life of Cats exhibition. Kazuki Kitamura stars as masterless samurai Kyutaro Madarame, who is hired by a dog-loving gang to get rid of their rival gang's beloved pet—an adorable white cat. Upon raising his sword, however, he cannot bring himself to go through with the act and the cat melts his ronin heart. This charming and hilarious period romp is purr-fect for cat lovers and cinephiles alike!


Screening is followed by an Edo cat-themed party. Come in your finest feline fashions for:
- Free access to the Life of Cats exhibition
- Open bar with specialty “Tamanojo” sake cocktail
- Mingle and take pictures with the beautiful geisha girl MASAE
- Prizes from Kinokuniya for those attending in costume
- Dance the night away to Neko Samurai themed music

Tickets:

Neko Samurai Screening (7 PM) plus Edo Cat Party Admission (8:30PM-11:00 PM)
- $20/$16 Japan Society Members
- Buy Tickets

Edo Cat Party Admission Only (8:30PM-11:00 PM)
- $16/$12 Japan Society Members
Buy Tickets

All tickets include Gallery admission. Tickets also include drinks at our open bar (must be 21 years or older).

Friday, May 15, 2015

Viz digital manga update for May

TENSHI NA KONAMAIKI © 1999 Hiroyuki NISHIMORI/SHOGAKUKAN
 VIZ MEDIA LAUNCHES A VARIETY
OF NEW CONTENT IN THE LATEST
DIGITAL MANGA UPDATE FOR MAY 

Exclusive New Manga Series Debuts As Well As New Digital
Bundle Promotions Offering Substantial Savings On BLEACH,
NARUTO, ONE PIECE And SHAMAN KING Multi-Volume Packages

VIZ Media offers manga (graphic novel) fans plenty of reading options for May as it announces its latest monthly digital update. New content includes the debut of 5 new titles as well as scores of new volumes for a variety of other acclaimed continuing series.

Leading the publisher’s roster of new titles this month are launches for the shojo fantasy comedy, CHEEKY ANGEL, the sci-fi inspired adventure of EUREKA SEVEN, and the clairvoyant drama of FLOWER OF THE DEEP SLEEP. Also debuting in May is a pair of brand new single-volume releases including the prequel to HONEY BLOOD, TALE ZERO, and GLASS WINGS, a poignant collection of manga short stories.

Throughout the month, VIZ Media also continues its Digital Manga Bundle Promotion offering manga readers specially curated selections each containing between 10 and 20 full volumes from critically acclaimed and fan-favorite titles such as BLEACH, NARUTO, ONE PIECE, YU-GI-OH! and SHAMAN KING at substantial savings over the regular digital MSRPs. These latest manga bundle selections are available to readers for a very limited time during May on VIZManga.com and through the comiXology platform.

VIZ Media and WEEKLY SHONEN JUMP will also run the original chapters of YU-GI-OH! in the weekly digital magazine as a part of their Jump Back campaign.  The first chapter will be released in the May 11th issue and will continue to reintroduce readers to the series for the next four weeks! In addition, WEEKLY SHONEN JUMP offers fans a chance to win the incredibly rare Yu-Gi-Oh! Card - Digvorzhak, King of Heavy Industry with a special sweepstakes starting this month! Fans can enter the contest by purchasing or renewing a WEEKLY SHONEN JUMP Annual Subscription.  The contest will run from May 11th to June 7th and winners will be chosen randomly.  To enter the contest and for more information, fans can visit http://shonenjump.viz.com/yugiohsweep.

Additional noteworthy updates include new volumes for 15 other continuing VIZ Media series. Included in this latest update are not-to-be-missed volumes for KISS OF THE ROSE PRINCESS (Vol. 4), ONE-PUNCH MAN (Vol. 7), RATMAN (Vol. 3), SGT FROG (Vol. 9) and TOKYO GHOUL (Vol. 2), as well as the series finale for ROSARIO+VAMPIRE SEASON II (Vol. 14) and many more! 

New May 2015 Digital Manga Series Debuts: 

HONEY BLOOD (TALE ZERO) · Rated ‘T’ for Teens · 
DIGITAL MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available Now!
HONEY BLOOD (TALE ZERO) is where Hinata and Junya’s love story originally began. In addition to the one-shot chapters that made HONEY BLOOD’s serialization possible, this volume also contains two bonus short stories from series creator Miko Mitsuki. 

CHEEKY ANGEL, Vol. 1 · Rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens · 
DIGITAL MSRP: $6.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available May 12th!
Megumi, a nine-year-old martial arts enthusiast and all around rapscallion always wanted to be, "the manliest man on Earth." After saving a sorcerer from a group of local toughs, Megumi is presented with a magic genie which can grant any wish. Unfortunately, this genie misconstrues Megumi's desire as wanting to become the, "womanliest woman on Earth," and in a flash, Megumi's Y chromosome is swapped for an X. Six years later...Megumi is the hottest girl in school, but has stayed true to his/her tough talkin', punk stompin' ways. If that's not enough, Genzo, the baddest dude in town, is smitten by Megumi's womanly wiles... 

GLASS WINGS (Single Volume) · Rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens · 
DIGITAL MSRP: $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available May 12th!
In this collection by manga creator Misuzu Asaoka, a boy struggles with a dreaded affliction that comes between him and his true love; an orphan has the power to take on the sickness of others; a disfigured boy confronts the inner conflict between his need to survive and his desire to love. In an uncompromising blend of magic and realism, GLASS WINGS reveals love's capacity to overcome all obstacles and to replenish the human spirit in the direst of times.  

EUREKA SEVEN, Vol. 1 · Rated ‘T+’ for Older Teens · 
DIGITAL MSRP: $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available May 19th!
Renton Thurston is a young 14-year-old who is tired of his monotonous life. His feelings of frustration come from his life of toil in his grandfather's garage and being the son of an enigmatic, legendary hero. The only thing that makes Renton happy is when he lifts, an extreme form of aerial hover-boarding. One day, a large LFO (Light Finding Operation) craft called Nirvash falls from the sky and a beautiful young girl named Eureka emerges and asks for repairs. When a smitten Renton literally falls over himself. Don’t miss this extraordinary series written by Jinsei Kataoka (DEADMAN WONDERLAND), with artwork by Kazuma Kondou (DEADMAN WONDERLAND). 

FLOWER OF THE DEEP SLEEP, Vol. 1 · Rated ‘T’ for Teens · 
DIGITAL MSRP: $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) · Available May 26th! 
In this series created by Yuana Kazumi (HARU HANA, MILLION TEARS), Yuuki has the power to dream of the future, but with such a gift comes a great burden. Can she manipulate what's about to happen? And, more importantly, should she? In a haunting vision, Yuuki sees a mysterious little girl with whom she shares a secret connection. Who is this girl? Does she have an even greater power to influence events? In this hypnotically gripping tale that blurs

Don’t miss the latest titles featured in VIZ Media’s Digital Manga Bundle Promotion which continues through May 31st on VIZManga.com as well as comiXology.

The Following Digital Bundles Are Available From May 11th-31st Only 

BLEACH Bundle · Promo MSRP $81.00 
Bundle includes BLEACH Vols. 22-48 

NARUTO Bundle · Promo MSRP $33.00 
Bundle includes NARUTO Vols. 17-27 

ONE PIECE Bundle · Promo MSRP $36.00 
Bundle includes ONE PIECE Vols. 12-23 

SHAMAN KING Bundle · Promo MSRP $51.00 
Bundle includes SHAMAN KING Vols. 16-32 

YU-GI-OH! Bundle · Promo MSRP $21.00 
Bundle includes YU-GI-OH! Vols. 1-7

Readers can enjoy all of these new manga titles that are available on VIZManga.com and the VIZ MANGA App for the iPad®, iPhone® and iPod® touch, Android-powered smart phones and tablets. The titles also may be purchased through the Nook, Kindle, Kobo, comiXology, iBooks and GooglePlay stores. These dynamic digital platforms offer fans the opportunity to explore and enjoy a massive catalog of new and classic manga titles that spans over 2,550 volumes across more than 225 different series.

The free VIZ Manga App continues to be the top application for reading digital manga and features a massive library of the most popular series in the world. Through the innovative VIZ Manga digital platform registered users are able to use one account to view their purchased manga across more devices than ever. New series and volumes are added every Tuesday. Fans can also find these titles and more for the NOOK, Kindle Fire, and Kobo eReaders, as well as in the comiXology, iBooks and GooglePlay Stores.

Most manga volumes are available for purchase and download in the U.S. and Canada within the VIZ Manga application starting from only $4.99 (U.S. / CAN) each. Readers can also explore free Chapter 1 previews of every series. For more information, please visit VIZManga.com or www.VIZ.com/apps.

To learn more about VIZ Manga, visit www.vizmanga.com.

North American theatrical release of CHRONICLES OF EVIL on May 22nd


The South Korean action-thriller Chronicles of Evil, distributed by CJ Entertainment and produced by BA Entertainment, will premiere in North American theaters next Friday, May 22, 2015 on the heels of the film’s release in South Korea.

Directed by BAEK Woon-hak, the writer of Korea’s first big-budget blockbuster Shiri, Chronicles of Evil is the gripping tale of a chief detective who is tasked to solve a murder that he committed in self-defense. The talented cast includes SON Hyun-joo (The Chaser, Three Days), MA Dong-seok (The Good, the Bad, and the Weird, The Unjust), CHOI Daniel (High Kick Through the Roof, Cyrano Agency), and PARK Seo-joon (Witch’s Romance).

Chronicles of Evil will open in major cities across North America including Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Dallas, Seattle, Vancouver, Toronto and more.The theater list can be accessed here.

Look for a review here at AsianCineFest next week.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Special theatrical engagements of THE LAST: NARUTO THE MOVIE in Latin America begin today


The Ultimate Cinematic Adventure Of The World’s Most
Popular Ninja Opens This Month In Multiple Countries

VIZ Media is delivering the kinetic big screen punch of the seventh climactic anime movie in the NARUTO SHIPPUDEN saga – THE LAST: NARUTO THE MOVIE – to Latin America for a series of theatrical releases in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico and Peru.

The NARUTO entertainment property enjoys widespread popularity across Latin America. VIZ Media has teamed with prominent partners such as ClaroVideo, Bandai Namco Games, and publisher, Panini, to develop NARUTO SHIPPUDEN into strong multimedia brands supported by print, video, and gaming products localized for burgeoning Latin American markets.

VIZ Media is the master licensor for NARUTO and NARUTO SHIPPUDEN. The company publishes the bestselling manga (graphic novel), licenses the brand for consumer products, and distributes the popular anime series and feature films in North and Latin America and also licenses localization for multiple international territories.

THE LAST: NARUTO THE MOVIE features the epic, big screen adventures of ninja, Naruto Uzumaki. It will be presented with original Japanese dialogue with Spanish subtitles (a Portuguese dub with English subtitles will also be offered in Brazil); run time is 112 minutes. THE LAST: NARUTO THE MOVIE will premiere in:

Release Date               Territory              Local Theatrical Partner

May 14th                     Chile                   Andes Films
May 14th                     Peru                    Andes Films
May 28th                     Brazil                  PlayArte
May 28th                     Mexico                Cinepolis
June 4th                       Argentina            DSX Films

Screenings in additional territories will be announced. 

The NARUTO SHIPPUDEN anime series is currently streaming throughout Latin America via ClaroVideo and Netflix, and in Brazil, broadcast via PlayTV. In addition, VIZ Media’s local broadcast, home media and theatrical distribution partners for NARUTO SHIPPUDEN include: in Argentina - DSX Films (theatrical distribution); in Brazil - PlayArte (home video & theatrical distribution) and PlayTV (cable/pay TV distribution); in Chile - Edisur and Andes Films (theatrical distribution), Etc. TV (cable/pay TV distribution); in Mexico - KOKUBAN and Cinepolis (theatrical distribution); in Peru - Edisur and Andes Films (theatrical distribution)

THE LAST: NARUTO THE MOVIE is based on the internationally bestselling NARUTO manga series created by Masashi Kishimoto. In the film, the moon is approaching dangerously close to Earth! Unless something is done, the moon will disintegrate, showering the earth with gigantic meteorites. As the clock ticks towards the end of the world, can Naruto save the earth from this crisis?

In the NARUTO manga and animated series, Naruto Uzumaki wants to be the best ninja in the land. He's done well so far, but Naruto knows he must train harder than ever and leaves his village for intense exercises that will push him to his limits. NARUTO SHIPPUDEN begins two and a half years later, when Naruto returns to find that everyone has been promoted up the ninja ranks – except him. Sakura’s a medic ninja, Gaara’s advanced to Kazekage, and Kakashi…well he remains the same. But pride isn’t necessarily becoming of a ninja, especially when Naruto realizes that Sasuke never returned from his search for Orochimaru. Plus, the mysterious Akatsuki organization is still an ever-present danger. As Naruto finds out more about the Akatsuki’s goals, he realizes that nothing in his universe is as it seems. Naruto is finding that he’s older, but will he also prove wiser and stronger?

Additional information on NARUTO and NARUTO SHIPPUDEN is available at www.Naruto.com.

For more information on manga titles available from VIZ Media, please visit www.VIZ.com.