VIZ Media Reveals Sailor Moon Sailor Stars English Dub Cast

VIZ Media revealed the English dub cast of Sailor Moon Sailor Stars on Monday on its official Facebook page and Twitter and via its website.

Image: Toei Animation

The English dub main cast includes Stephanie Sheh as Chibi-Chibi, Melissa Hutchison as Sailor Star Fighter, Erika Harlacher as Sailor Star Maker, Sarah Williams as Sailor Star Healer, and Carrie Keranen as Sailor Galaxia.

Thanks to VIZ, this is the first time Sailor Moon Sailor Stars is getting a home video release in North America. The release will have limited edition Blu-ray Disc/DVD combo pack including a full-color episode guide inside a collector’s chipboard box, a standard Blu-ray Disc/DVD combo pack, and a standard DVD release. Sailor Moon Sailor Stars is the fifth and final season of the original Sailor Moon television anime series. VIZ is set to release the series this spring.

Sources: VIZ Media website, VIZ Media Facebook, VIZ Media Twitter

Adult Swim’s Toonami Block Starts Half Hour Earlier on May 25

Toonami makes room for the premiere of Attack on Titan Season 3 Part 2 and Lupin the Third Part 5

For Toonami fans who can’t wait until almost midnight to start watching anime, we have some good news for you. Toonami announced on its official Facebook page and on its unofficial Twitter Toonami News on Monday that its block will begin half an hour earlier starting next Saturday, May 25.

Here is Toonami’s upcoming airing schedule starting from 10:30am up until 3:30am:

Along with the changed schedule, Toonami is making room for the premiere of Attack on Titan Season 3 Part 2. Its next major premiere will be its debut of Lupin the Third Part 5 starting June 15.

Sources: Toonami Facebook page, Toonami News Twitter

Masashi Kishimoto’s Samurai 8 Manga Debuts in Shonen Jump

Shonen Jump also adds Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, Golden Kamuy, and One Punch Man

Viz Media’s Shonen Jump launched the new manga Samurai 8: The Tale of Hachimaru (Samurai 8: Hachimaruden), by the creator of Naruto Masashi Kishimoto and illustrator Akira Ōkubo, on Sunday in English concurrently with its debut in Japan. It is the first new serialization to be added in Shonen Jump during the Reiwa era.

The first 72-page chapter of the futuristic samurai adventure story is available now in English. New chapters will be released on a weekly basis for free at shonenjump.com and via the Shonen Jump Manga & Comics app, available for iOS and Android.

Shonen Jump also added manga series to its digital vault including Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, Parts 1-3 (Phantom Blood, Battle Tendency, and Stardust Crusaders), Golden Kamuy, and One Punch Man.

Source: Press release

Web Anime ‘Miru Tights’ Premieres on YouTube with English and Chinese Subtitles

The day after its debut in Japan on streaming service Nico Nico Channel the first episode of ecchi web anime Miru Tights kicks off on its official Youtube Channel TRUSS on Saturday worldwide. It is available with English, Traditional Chinese, and Simplified Chinese subtitles.

MyAnimeList provides a synopsis for the series:

A rainy morning in April. Cherry blossoms are struck by rain and floats in the puddle. High school students enter the school gate, carrying various colors of umbrellas.

“Good morning, Ren,” Yua greeted Ren, wearing wet tights in front of the shoe cupboard. When Ren faced her glumly, Homi, who was drenched, joined them as if she is jumping. The girls discuss the new semester.

The girls live their irreplaceable school life as the seasons change.

Illustrator Yomu, who primarily creates art of women in tights and made his debut as a mangaka in adult manga magazine Comic Koh back in October 2015, is also the writer of Miru Tights original story. Fumiaki Maruto (Saekano: How to Raise a Boring Girlfriend) is the writer of the series. Yukari Hibino works as the character designer while SHADE composes the music. The anime is being directed at Yokohama Animation Lab by Yuki Ogawa (Oyaa-san wa Shishunki!) and is produced by TRUSS.

Watch Miru Tights very first episode on YouTube by clicking here!

Source: TRUSS YouTube channel

Non Non Biyori Gets Third Season + Promo Video

At last weekend’s Nyanpasu Matsuri Vacation Nanon! event it was announced that a third season is in the works for TV anime series Non Non Biyori. Non Non Biyori is a TV anime adaptation of Atto’s rural comedy manga that began publication in the Comic Alive magazine in September 2009.

Along with the news of its upcoming third season is an official promotional video to accompany it.

Crunchyroll provides a synopsis for the series:

The closest book store sells Jump every Wednesday, the video rental shop is ten stations down. Vegetables are left out for sale, and no one’s ever even see a lock on a house. That’s the country life they live, but these five girls at Asahigaoka Branch School are enjoying it! Enjoy the leisurely, laid-back life of these unique girls!

Non Non Biyori season one and season two are available to stream on Crunchyroll and VRV.

EA Plans to Create Mobile Version of Apex Legends

During today’s conference call by EA, the video game company released its earnings for the final quarter of the financial year, praised Apex Legends for its tremendous growth and success so far, and talked about its plans for the future of the fairly new battle-royale game such as making it available to other countries such as China and bringing the game to mobile devices.

Based on its quarterly earnings, Apex Legends is no doubt a big hit. According to EA, Apex Legends was “easily the fastest-growing franchise we’ve ever had.” With more than 50 million players, 30% of those players being new to EA, the video game company is wanting to create a bigger future for the franchise starting off by releasing a mobile version of the game.

“We are in advanced negotiations to bring Apex Legends to China and to mobile,” said Blake Jorgensen, COO and CFO at EA. “We will update you on time frames when those negotiations are concluded.”

EA is also planning on self-publishing Apex Legends in Korea as it will offer it an opportunity to build them a direct connection with the players there and hope it will do the same for its other games.

Even though fans of the franchise are sure to be looking forward to its release, it isn’t surprising that EA is taking this path with Apex Legends since other battle-royale hits such as Fortnite and PUBG have done the same.

It has yet to be stated when Apex Legends will be released for mobile.

Source: EA’s conference call

Lily-Rose Depp Channels Her Inner Sailor Pluto at Met Gala

It’s that time of year again where the world will see some of Hollywood’s most biggest stars decked out in high-end fashion, the Met Gala, with this year’s theme being ‘Camp: Notes on Fashion’. Among Lady Gaga, Zendaya, JLo, and others is actress and model Lily-Rose Depp who made an appearance at this year’s Met Gala in a vintage black Chanel haute couture dress embellished in gold chains, just like the one that Setsuna Meioh, aka Sailor Pluto, worn!

Even Sailor Moon fans were shocked by the resemblance!:

The creator of Sailor Moon, Naoko Takeuchi, is known for her love of couture fashion. She looked to fashion magazine ads and runways for inspiration for the Sailor Moon manga. The dress that Sailor Pluto wears in the Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon Gengashuu III art book was inspired by the dress in the Chanel Haute Couture Spring/Summer line worn by Naomi Campbell in 1992 (so, technically the Chanel got to the dress first!).

So, it seems more so that Depp was not inspired by the anime, but by Chanel. Though, Depp has yet to state where she got her inspiration from.

Mirai Wins AniMovie Award at International Stuttgart Festival

With over 60 films submitted and out of ten nominated, the film Mirai won the AniMovie award for best animated feature film at the International Stuttgart Festival of Animated Film in Germany on Sunday.

“We appreciated so much the filmmakers inviting us into this home, and offering us the opportunity to watch this family grow together, and to help us understand our deep and human connection to those who came before us,” said one of the judges.

Mirai is the first anime feature film to win the award in five years since Hayao Miyazaki’s Ponyo in 2010 and Makoto Shinkai’s The Garden of Words in 2014.

This is not Mirai’s first-ever award though as it was awarded Animation of the Year at the 42nd annual Japan Academy Prizes in March, won the Best Animated Independent Feature category for the 46th Annual Anime Awards, and nominated for the Animated Feature Film category of the 91st Academy Awards.

GKIDS and Fathom Events held over 700 screenings of the film in the U.S. earning $672,652 USD. It placed at #19 at the box office in Japan in July 2018.

Four-year-old Kun’s world is turned upside down when he becomes the older brother to baby sister Mirai (meaning “future”). Mirai captures the hearts and all the attention from her new family, except Kun. Kun becomes jealous of Mirai, so jealous that he runs off into the garden where he encounters strange guests from the past and the future with one of them being his sister Mirai…as a teenager! Together, Kun and Mirai go on a journey through time and space, uncovering their family’s incredible history and ever-expanding story.

Mirai was directed at Studio Chizu by Mamoru Hosoda, who was also the scriptwriter and credited for the original story idea. Hiroyuki Aoyama and Ayako Hata (both worked on The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, Summer Wars, The Boy and The Beast) are the animation directors. Yohei Takamatsu and Takahashi Omori (The Boy and The Beast) are the art directors. The film was produced by Yuichiro Saito, who helped with Hosoda’s earlier works.

Mirai is available now on Blu-Ray, DVD, and digital! (Amazon)

Sources: Press release, GKIDS official website

Super Mario Kart, Mortal Kombat Enters Video Game Hall of Fame

The Strong: National Museum of Play, an interactive museum dedicated to the exploration of play and collecting pieces of pop culture history based in Rochester, NY, inducted Colossal Cave Adventure, Microsoft Windows Solitaire, Mortal Kombat, and Super Mario Kart into its World Video Game Hall of Fame. Other nominees included Candy Crush Saga, Centipede, Dance Dance Revolution, Half-Life, Myst, NBA 2K, Sid Meier’s Civilization, and Super Smash Bros. Melee.

Here is a video of the induction ceremony at The Strong:

Here is The Strong’s descriptions of the inducted games:

Colossal Cave Adventure

Text-based Colossal Cave Adventure debuted in 1976 and conjured up an immersive, interactive fantasy world despite the limits of primitive computer technology. While the game had no graphics and relied on players typing written commands, it still offered a fully-realized realm to explore, with treasures to find and puzzles to solve. It laid the foundation for an entire genre of fantasy and adventure games, and it directly inspired other pioneering titles, such as Adventureland and Zork, which helped launch the commercial computer game industry. “The best games fire the imagination,” says Jon-Paul Dyson, director of The Strong’s International Center for the History of Electronic Games. “Anyone who first typed a command like ‘get lamp’ into Colossal Cave Adventure could see the power of electronic games to create magical worlds of the imagination.”

Microsoft Windows Solitaire

Based on a centuries-old card game, Microsoft Solitaire debuted in 1990 on the Windows 3.0 computing platform and became ubiquitous around the world.  Since then, Microsoft Solitaire has been distributed on over a billion computers and is now played 35 billion games per year in over 200 markets around the world and is localized into 65 languages. “The game proved that sometimes analog games can be even more popular in the digital world and demonstrated that a market existed for games that appeal to people of all types,” says Jeremy Saucier, assistant vice president for electronic games and interpretation. “In many ways, it helped pave the way for the growth of the casual gaming market that remains so popular today.”

Mortal Kombat

Mortal Kombat brought cutting-edge graphics and unique fighting styles to the arcade when it launched in 1992. The game’s over-the-top depictions of violence also spurred international debate, including Congressional hearings in the United States that spurred the creation of the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) in 1994, and provided that games weren’t just for kids. By pushing the boundaries in terms of content and what players could do with their in-game characters, Mortal Kombat spawned an entire franchise—including games, music albums, action figures, a theatrical stage show, and Hollywood movies. Says Digital Games Curator Andrew Borman, “Beyond its controversial content and role in triggering debate about the role of violent video games in society, Mortal Kombat’s compelling gameplay, iconic characters, and many sequels have kept players coming back again and again.”

Super Mario Kart

Nintendo’s Super Mario Kart combined the thrill of racing games with the beloved characters of its Super Mario Bros. franchise. Released in 1992, the game built on previous racing games and popularized the go-kart subgenre. Super Mario Kart has sold millions of copies on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System and generated a dozen other titles across consoles, handhelds, and arcade games that have sold more than 100 million units. “Super Mario Kart truly excelled as a social game that appealed to players of all skill levels, especially with its engaging multi-player settings,” says Julia Novakovic, archivist. “It invited friends, family, and gaming fans of all ages along for an unforgettable ride that has made it the longest-running racing series in gaming history.”

It is open to the public to nominate a game for the Video Game Hall of Fame, but the decision making for the final selections are made by journalists, scholars, and others who are more well-acquainted with the history of video games and their role in society.

The Strong’s International Center for the History of Electronic Games will provide a permanent display of the inducted games in its eGameRevolution exhibit, a highly interactive exhibit where the people can play all sorts of games that is hosted by the museum.

Source: Press release

New Anime Film “Weathering with You” Gets Novel Adaptation

Upcoming anime film Weathering with You will be getting a novel adaptation, and will be written by the creator himself who also directed the anime film Your Name, Makoto Shinkai. The novel will be set for release on July 19, a day before the film’s release in Japan.

From “Weathering with You”-(C) 2019 “Weathering with You” Production Committee

The story follows high schooler Hodaka Morishima who leaves his small town to give living on his own a go and to work as a writer in Tokyo for a shady occult publication. After starting his new job it is always unusually rainy, but no one bats an eye. Hodaka soon meets a young girl named Hina Amado who has the unbeknownst power to control the weather.

Source: Weathering with You official website