Here are the headlines to come out of the anime industry since the last newsletter:
- Anime News Network is reporting that Bandai Entertainment, the subsidiary of Namco Bandai Holdings (USA) that handles anime and manga in North America, will stop offering new DVD, Blu-ray Disc, and manga releases in February 2012. The company will continue to distribute its existing catalog lineup, but it will no longer produce and distribute new releases in February. Releases in Bandai Entertainment's current catalog will be available after February, and plans to continue new stock for these existing releases, as needed, until their licenses expire. The company also announced that the following anime DVD and Blu-ray Disc releases are being cancelled: Gosick, Nichijo, and Turn A Gundam; the rights to these series will revert back to their licensors. Bandai Entertainment is shifting its focus to licensing rights to other companies, with an emphasis on digital distribution, broadcast, and merchandising.
- Hisao Maki, co-creator of the Tomorrow's Joe video anime series Joe vs. Joe, passed away on January 2, 2012 at the age of 71.
- Crunchyroll has announced that the site will begin streaming the Moretsu Pirates anime series on Saturday, January 7, 2012 at 12:00 p.m. EST. The series will be available in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden.
- Sentai Filmworks has announced that the company has acquired the license for the Moretsu Pirates television anime series. The company will have digital and television releases starting in February 2012, followed by DVDs and Blu-ray Discs.
- FUNimation has announced that the Fullmetal Alchemist: The Sacred Star of Milos anime film will have a red carpet premiere at the Downtown Independent Theater in Los Angeles, California, on January 20, 2012. The red carpet begins at 8:00 p.m., with a screening at 9:00 p.m. The screening will be followed by a Q&A session with Kazuya Murata (the Japanese director), Mike McFarland (the US director), members of the US voice cast, and BONES president Masahiko Minami. Tickets are currently on sale through the Downtown Independent Theater's website.
- Crunchyroll has announced that the site will begin streaming The Prince of Tennis II anime series on Wednesday, January 4, 2012 at 1:30 p.m. EST. The series will be available in North America, South America, Central America, Greenland, Iceland, Spain, Portugal, UK, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, and Turkey.
- Crunchyroll has announced that the site began streaming the fourth season of Natsume's Book of Friends on January 2, 2012 at 1:00 p.m. EST. The stream is available in North America, South America, Central America, Greenland, Iceland, Spain, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Ireland, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Finland, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, and Turkey.
- Anime News Network is reporting that NIS America will be releasing the Natsume's Book of Friends anime series on home video, and that the company has acquired the rights to all four seasons of the series. However, at this point in time, the company has not finalized in what format the series will be released.
- Anime News Network is reporting that TMS Entertainment began streaming the Lupin III: The Secret of Mamo anime film and Space Adventure Cobra - The Movie on Hulu with English dubs on January 1, 2012.
- Anime Network and Comcast Cable have announced that Broken Blade will be shown exclusively on Comcast XFINITY during January 2012.
- United StatesBankruptcy Judge Shelley C. Chapman has ruled that 4Kids Entertainment's licensing agreement for the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime franchise is still in effect. In her ruling, Judge Chapman found that the Japanese consortium that controls the rights for the franchise did not effectively terminate the agreement with 4Kids Entertainment. She also said in her ruling that the consortium did not follow the proper procedure for terminating its agreement with 4Kids, under the terms listed in the agreement itself. The agreement dictated that 4Kids should have had a period of time to correct the breach of contract, but Judge Chapman determined that "4Kids never received a proper and effective notice."
- GKids has posted a preliminary list of cities in North America where it "should" be screening Studio Ghibli films in 2012: Los Angeles and Dallas in January, Boston in February, Toronto and Austin in March, Washington, D.C. in April-May, Seattle in June, and San Francisco in July. The American Cinematheque and Egyptian theaters in Los Angeles will be screening Studio Ghibli films from January 26-February 12, 2012. The films being screened as the Los Angeles venues are: Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, Castle in the Sky, My Neighbor Totoro, Kiki's Delivery Service, Only Yesterday, The Ocean Waves, Porco Rosso, Pom Poko, Whisper of the Heart, Princess Mononoke, My Neighbors the Yamadas, Spirited Away, The Cat Returns, and Howl's Moving Castle.
- MomoCon has announced that anime voice actress Wendee Lee will a guest at their upcoming convention. Her rolesi include Faye Valentine on Cowboy Bebop, Takeru "T.K." Takaishi on Digimon Adventure, Haruhi Suzumiya on The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, and Konata Izumi on Lucky Star. MomoCon is taking place March 16-18, 2012 at the Marriott Marquis in downtown Atlanta, Georgia.
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This week, I posted three new articles to the Anime site. The first is a review of the Dragon Ball Z Season Nine DVD box set. The second is the first half of a Dragon Ball Z episode listing, and the third is the second half of the Dragon Ball Z episode listing. I am also featuring the Pokemon Sinnoh Handbook as an "Editor's Recommendation" on the main page of the Anime site.
Here's the latest articles from the Anime site at BellaOnline.com.
Dragon Ball Z Season Nine Box Set
The Dragon Ball Z Season Nine box set includes six DVDs that contain the final thirty-eight episodes of the series.
Dragon Ball Z Seasons One Through Five
This is a listing of the episodes for the first five seasons of the Dragon Ball Z anime series.
Dragon Ball Z Season Six Through the Movies
This is a listing of the episodes for seasons six through nine of the Dragon Ball Z anime series, and it also includes the specials and the movies.
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