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Haruki Murakami Book Signing Report

Date: Sunday 31st August 2014 [11:23] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Fandom

Yesterday cult best selling author Haruki Murakami was in London for a book signing. Being fans of his work the Otaku News Team decided to go along and see if we could get a signed copy of his book. It turns out, we're not hardcore Murakami fans.

Waterstones were running the book signing and advised fans that they would be giving out wrist bands for the event at 8:30am. The first 200 people would be able to buy a copy of the book and get it signed by the man himself. The next 200 would get a pre-signed copy. We got to the Piccadilly branch of Waterstones at 7:30am, already the queue had hit the 400 people capacity. The security guard for the event was politely turning people away. It was inevitable if you cap the number of people at an event, that there will be some people disappointed.

Read More... | Source: Otaku News

Haruki Murakami London Book Signings - August 2014

Date: Friday 29th August 2014 [16:58] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

UK based fans of cult writer Haruki Murakami will want to head to Waterstone's Piccadilly Circus Branch on Saturday 30th August 2014 at 11:00am where the author will be signing his latest book Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage.

Sensibly due to the authors huge popularity Waterstone's are advising people to turn up early to avoid disappointment. They will be operating a wristband scheme. Customers will receive their wristband for this event when they purchase Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage on Saturday 30th August at 8.30am, or when they bring a valid Waterstones receipt/Waterstones.com despatch note with their copy on the day of the signing. They'll be limiting the wristbands to the first 200 people, and they are non transferable. Those who are not lucky enough to meet Haruki Murakami on the day, will be guaranteed the opportunity to buy a rare pre-signed edition. These will be limited to 200 copies only, one per person.

Source: Waterstones

Hello Kitty Is Not A Cat

Date: Thursday 28th August 2014 [17:36] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Freaky Things

Every so often in the news you hear something that takes you by surprise. This week The LA Times found out that Hello Kitty is not a cat.

While researching Sanrio's super star character for a museum retrospective at the Japanese American National Museum in LA Christine R. Yano an anthropologist from the University of Hawaii (and currently a visiting professor at Harvard, as well as a Hello Kitty expert) discovered that Hello Kitty is not a cat.

Read More... | Source: LA Times

Psycho-Pass Complete Series One Collection DVD and Blu-ray UK Release Details

Date: Wednesday 27th August 2014 [14:52] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime

A quick reminder to UK based anime fans who will be excited to hear about Manga Entertainment UK's upcoming release of Psycho-Pass Complete Series One Collection. The whole series is being released on DVD and Blu-ray on Monday 1st September 2014.

You can pre-order Psycho-pass Complete Series One Collection from Amazon.co.uk on DVD and Blu-ray.

Read More... | Source: Manga Entertainment UK

AmeChibi Sells Out In 6 Hours

Date: Monday 25th August 2014 [14:51] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

UK anime fans will not be surprised to hear that Mini Anime Convention AmeChibi 2015 has hit it's registration limit of 500 people in 6 hours of opening their website for registration. The website enabled registration at midday on 25th August 2014, and by 6pm on the same day the limit had been reached.

We did say to book early to avoid disappointment. Those who have not yet registered can be added to the wait list, and put in the queue for any cancelled registrations.

The convention is going to be a smaller less crowded affair, with the event highlighting "the smaller size means a cosier venue, with less of that pesky walking around".

Source: AmeCon Website

Howl's Moving Castle Today's Google Doodle

Date: Saturday 16th August 2014 [7:55] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime

Fans of Ghibli will be pleased to note that today's Google Doodle in the UK is Diana Wynne Jones, the author of Howl's Moving Castle. The doodle celebrates what would be her 80th birthday. The doodle features Micheal, Calcifer and Sophie sitting around the fireplace. As square on the door rotates, and the door opens and closes changing location.

Source: Google UK

AmeChibi 2015 Registration Details

Date: Saturday 16th August 2014 [7:21] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

UK based anime fans will be pleased to hear the news sent to us from the good folks from AmeCon. They've already announced that AmeChibi will be running from Friday 10th to Sunday 12th April 2015 in Nottingham. Now they've just revealed when registration will be open/

On Monday 25th of August 2014 at midday, they'll accept registrations. So get ready, as with events like this once they've sold out, that's it. We advise on booking early to avoid disappointment.

Update: AmeCon have confirmed the mini con will be limited to 500 places. So do book early.

Read More... | Source: AmeCon

Hyper Japan 2014 Report

Date: Thursday 7th August 2014 [15:04] | Posted By: Lucy
Category: > Features

So Japanese Culture event Hyper Japan was the 25th -27th July 2014 this year, a few of us went & this is a run down of the goings on at this awesome event!

Read More... | Source: Otaku News

Studio Ghibli Forever screenings throughout the UK in August

Date: Tuesday 5th August 2014 [13:32] | Posted By: Voxie
Category: > Events

In conjunction with film distributor Studio Canal, there will be a selection of Studio Ghibli features playing at cinemas throughout the UK in August. Including Spirited Away, My Neighbour Totoro, Arrietty, Ponyo, Earthsea, Cat Returns, Porco Rosso and Princess Mononoke. There will even be a 'Draw Your Own Studio Ghibli Character' workshop!

Screenings will be all over the UK, including Glasgow, Sheffield, London, Manchester, Bristol, Nottingham.

Not only that, but tickets are at great value starting from 4 for children and 7.50 for Adults.

Read More... | Source: Studio Ghibli Forever

Studio Ghibli to close down (or is it?)

Date: Sunday 3rd August 2014 [17:16] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Production > Studio Ghibli

The internet has lit up with the news that Studio Ghibli is to close down. Being the internet it's also full of misinformation. According to sources, Studio Ghibli producer Toshio Suzuki said on the MBS Channel that they're restructuring Studio Ghibli. They are considering closing animation department. Many speculators in the industry are not surprised by this.

Kotaku have a good analysis of the story and it's details. As they correctly point out, an event like Studio Ghibli closing down would be all over Japanese News sources. Currently it is not.

Update: We've changed the source of this article to Kotaku, as they have a great analysis of what's going on.

Read More... | Source: Kotaku

Bryan Lee O'Malley Seconds UK Book Signing Details

Date: Tuesday 29th July 2014 [15:14] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

UK based fans of Scott Pilgrim will be very pleased to hear about Bryan Lee O'Malley's new book Seconds. To celebrate it's launch Bryan will be in the UK for some book signings at Gosh! Comics in London on Thursday 14th August 2014, The British Library in London on Friday 15th 2014, plus Forbidden Planet in Edinburgh on Sunday 17th August 2014.

We've already updated the Otaku Calendar with these details.

Update: More details the signings have been announced including, Leeds, Manchester and Dublin.

If you can't make it to the signings, you can always pre-order Seconds from Amazon.co.uk.

Source: Raidomaru.com - Bryan Lee O'Malley's Website

The Daiwa Scholarship - Spend 19 Months in Japan

Date: Monday 28th July 2014 [15:45] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Culture

UK readers will be very interested in a scholarship offered by the Daiwa Anglo Japanese Foundation.

"The Daiwa Scholarship is a unique 19-month programme of language study, work placement and homestay in Japan. Daiwa Scholarships offer young and talented UK citizens with strong leadership potential the opportunity to acquire Japanese language skills and to access expertise and knowledge relevant to their career goals. No previous experience of Japan or Japanese is necessary."

So if you're a British Citizen about to graduate, or have graduated and are aged between 21 and 35 years of age as of 1 September 2015 you should investigate further!

Source: The Daiwa Scholarship

Ghost in the Shell UK Cinema and Limited Edition Blu-Ray Steelbook Release Details

Date: Monday 28th July 2014 [15:09] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime > Film

UK Anime fans will be pleased to hear the news that Manga Entertainment UK have sent us. We've been told as it's the 25th anniversary since the original Masamune Shirow manga was released, the film will receive a limited theatrical run at select Picturehouse Cinemas from 27th September 2014. Following on from that on Monday 29th September the movie will get a HD Blu-ray release with a bonus 22-page booklet, in a limited edition steel book. Fans will note that this the first time the original movie has had a high-def release in the UK.

The limited edition Steelbook is available to pre-order now from the Amazon.co.uk now.

Read More... | Source: Amazon.co.uk

Hyper Japan Event Reminder - July 2014

Date: Thursday 24th July 2014 [17:04] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

Fans of Japan looking for something to do this weekend will want to head over to Earl's Court for Hyper Japan. The Japanese Culture event is set to run in London from Friday 25th to Sunday 27th July 2014. As we've mentioned before, there's lots to see and do this weekend.

Source: Hyper Japan

New Directors From Japan - third windows Films Kickstarter Campaign

Date: Monday 21st July 2014 [15:25] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime > Film

The good folks from UK based Eastern movie distributor Third Window Films have got in touch with us to tell us about their Kickstarter Crowd-Funding Campaign. They plan to fund a Dual Format 3-disc Limited Edition release of New Directors from Japan. Basically this release will cover up and coming talent from Japan, with a unique and entertaining edge.

Update At the time of writing the goal has been met, and the campaign has been closed. We want stretch goals!

Read More... | Source: Third Window Films

Anime director Shingo Natsume to be guest of honour at MCM Scotland Comic Con 2014

Date: Friday 18th July 2014 [15:47] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

We've already mentioned that the MCM Manchester Comic Con is about to start, but planning ahead anime fans will be interested in the MCM Scotland Comic Con set to run at Glasgow's SECC from Saturday 6th to Sunday 7th September 2014. Otaku will pleased to hear that anime director Shingo Natsume will be the guest of honour at the September event. Director has an impressive CV and is currently directing Space Dandy alongside Shinichiro Watanabe.

As always, we've added details of the event to the Otaku Calendar.

Read More... | Source: MCM Scotland Comic Con

MCM Manchester Comic Con July 2014 Details

Date: Wednesday 16th July 2014 [15:41] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

UK based anime fans and geeks in general will want to head to Manchester this weekend for the MCM Manchester Comic Con. The event is set to run from Saturday 19th to Sunday 20th July 2014 at Manchester Central. Popular anime companies will be there including Manga Entertainment UK and Anime Limited will be there selling their wares.

So head over to stand number 811, to find Manga Entertainment UK, Anime Limited and MVM titles on sale.

They'll also be some voice actors at the show including Bryce Papenbrook (who'll be voicing Eren in Attack on Titan), DC Douglas, along with Vic Mignogna who is best known as voicing Edward from Fullmetal Alchemist (he's voiced loads).

Plus the MCM Manchester Comic Con will play host to the EuroCosplay Championships where on Saturday one talented person will be selected to represent the UK for the 2014 finals.

You can download the official show guide here.

Read More... | Source: MCM Manchester Comic Con

Manga Jiman 2014 Competition Details

Date: Saturday 12th July 2014 [15:06] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Art

UK based artists should get drawing as the Embassy of Japan in the UK have just announced details of the 2014 Manga Jiman competition. The manga competition is now in it's 8th year. The theme this time around is "ichi-go ichi-e", which can be translated as "once-in-a-lifetime meeting" or "a chance encounter".

We've covered previous Manga Jiman competitions before. The top prize this year is 2 return tickets to Japan, second prize is a laptop, and third a rather nifty digital camera.

They've also got an interesting category for 11 to 13 year olds, Yonkoma Manga covering 4 panels.

Read More... | Source: The Embassy of Japan in the UK

An interview with Japan Camera Hunter

Date: Wednesday 9th July 2014 [14:15] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Features

Normally on Otaku News, when we talk about otaku we mean fans of anime and manga. There are plenty of other areas worth exploring. Today, we'll introduce you to someone who loves cameras.

With the world going increasingly more digital, the photography scene around the world is seeing a resurgence of film and there is a demand among amateur and professional photographers alike for good film cameras. Film photographers enjoy the tangible nature of the photos and the fact that film slows the whole process down. Developing the picture is something to look forward to, it doesn't give instant gratification like a digital camera.

Certain cameras are now regarded as classics of their era. Japan is the natural place to go if you want a nice film camera because the country is ubiquitous for photography and cameras with so many camera brands being Japanese. While in other countries things are going on-line, physical camera shops both for new and second hand goods are a thriving business.

Bellamy Hunt lives in Tokyo. He runs a website called Japan Camera Hunter. He's passionate about photography and film. If you want a decent camera sourced from Japan, he's your man.

Our editor Joe caught up with him over a coffee in Shinjuku.

Read More... | Source: Otaku News

Ambassadors of Cute

Date: Sunday 6th July 2014 [4:43] | Posted By: Lucy
Category: > Culture

What are these strange cute mascots, who are they, and what do they do?

Read More... | Source: Otaku News

Hyper Japan Event Details - July 2014

Date: Thursday 3rd July 2014 [15:28] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

UK based fans of Japanese culture including anime, manga, food, J-Pop, cosplay and more traditional things will want to head to London on Friday 25th to Sunday 27th July 2014 for Hyper Japan.

The annual J-culture event returns promising to be it's biggest Hyper Japan yet.

It'll have all sorts of fun things to see and do. Including a game and anime park, fringe market, a section of pure kawaii, plus much more!

Read More... | Source: Hyper Japan

Fairy Tail The Movie: Phoenix Priestess UK DVD and blu-ray release details

Date: Tuesday 1st July 2014 [15:15] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Press Releases

UK Anime fans of the Fairy Tail series will be pleased to hear the news from Manga Entertainment UK. They've sent us details of the upcoming movie release on DVD and blu-ray. Fairy Tail The Movie: Phoenix Priestess will be released on Monday 28th July 2014.

You can pre-order the blu-ray or DVD from Amazon.co.uk.

Read More... | Source: Manga Entertainment UK

Artist talk: Seiichi Hayashi in conversation with Ryan Holmberg in London July 2014

Date: Sunday 15th June 2014 [13:30] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

The good folks from The Japan Foundation in London have got in touch to tell us about an up coming event that'll be of interest to manga fans. They'll be hosting Artist talk: Seiichi Hayashi in conversation with Ryan Holmberg on Tuesday 1st July 2014 from 6:30pm at their London Office.

Seiichi Hayashi is know for his highly regarded alternative manga. If you think manga is all shonen and want to expand your horizons. There is so much to manga and different forms of sequential art.

The talk is free to attend but booking is essential. To book e-mail event@jpf.org.uk

Read More... | Source: The Japan Foundation, London

Transformers x Evangelion - Optimus Prime with Eva Unit 01 Colours

Date: Monday 9th June 2014 [14:53] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Retail

Fans of giant robots will be pleased to hear the news from the Big Bad Toy Store. Takara Tomy Toys the folks behind Transformers in Japan have teamed up with Gainax to produce an Evangelion Unit-01 coloured Optimus Prime. This forms part of the Transformers x Evangelion project.
Optimus' trailer comes with NERV branding too. Optimus himself sports the distinct purple and green colour scheme. While the Autobot Matrix of Leadership has been made to look like an S2 Engine.

Only 1,000 will be sold in Japan.

Fans of transformers merchandise will know that this is essentially a repaint of the MP-10 Masterpiece Optimus Prime figure. Big Bad Toy Store are taking pre-orders at $314.99 (USD).

Read More... | Source: Takara Tomy

An interview with Blue Exorcist Movie Staff Takamitsu Inoue and Atsushi Takahashi

Date: Wednesday 4th June 2014 [16:59] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Features

A few weeks ago two of the production staff behind the Blue Exorcist Movie were visiting the May 2014 MCM London Comic Con. They were there to promote Manga Entertainment's UK release and catch up with fans. We were lucky enough to meet and interview Takamitsu Inoue the film's Producer and Atsushi Takahashi the director.

Read More... | Source: Otaku News

MCM London Comic Con smashes attendance record, tops 100,000 visitors

Date: Thursday 29th May 2014 [16:28] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

The MCM London Comic Con for May 2014 has just finished. We're still recovering from the huge event. So much always happen at them! The good folks from the Comic Con have sent us details of the attendance figures. The May 2014 event attracted 101,600 addendies, up from 88,000 in October 2013, and just over 70,000 people in May 2013.

To cope with this huge growth the people running the event booked more floor space at the London Excel Centre and even arranged for extra cash machines to be brought in to cope with all the demand.

At this current growth rate it'll interesting to see how big the October 2014 MCM London Comic Con is!

Read More... | Source: MCM London Comic Con

Netflix licenses Harlock CG film for all territories

Date: Saturday 24th May 2014 [12:55] | Posted By: Eeeper
Category: > Anime

Netflix announces streaming rights have been acquired for 2013 Captain Harlock CG feature film.

Read More... | Source: Otaku News

Anime Limited licence Wings of Honneamise

Date: Thursday 22nd May 2014 [15:04] | Posted By: Eeeper
Category: > Anime

UK anime distributor licenses classic 1980's anime feature film from Studio GAINAX and directed by Hiroyuki Yamaga.

Read More... | Source: Anime Limited

ShootTokyo Kickstarter Photo Book Campaign

Date: Sunday 18th May 2014 [14:04] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Art

Tokyo is an iconic city, and many amazing photos of have been taken there. Tokyo based photographer and blogger Dave Powell runs the website ShootTokyo. He captures moments in the city and does lots of street photography. He's well known in the photographic blog scene and his site regularly attracts thousands of visitors daily. A photo speaks a thousand words and his photos speak for themselves.

Read More... | Source: ShootTokyo Kickstarter Campaign

VIZ Media US licences entire Sailor Moon anime library

Date: Saturday 17th May 2014 [16:19] | Posted By: Eeeper
Category: > Anime

VIZ Media announce the licensing of the Sailor Moon animated library for streaming and home video release in North America.

Read More... | Source: Anime News Network

Patema Inverted Quad Poster Give Away

Date: Saturday 17th May 2014 [13:34] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime

Patema Inverted is out now in selected cinemas across the UK. To celebrate, we've got a very nice quad poster of the anime film to give away. What's a quad poster? Well film buff would already know, it's the standard size poster used in UK cinemas to promote films. They are 40 inches by 30 inches in landscape format.

Read More... | Source: Otaku News

Ghost In The Shell Blu-ray - Limited Edition Steelbook now available for pre-order from Amazon UK

Date: Wednesday 14th May 2014 [16:34] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime > DVD

UK anime fans keen to get their hands on the hi-def release of the original Ghost in the Shell Movie, will be pleased to hear that Amazon.co.uk are now taking pre-orders for the title on blu-ray. The limited edition steelbook is due out on Monday 29th September 2014.

Source: Amazon.co.uk

Patema Inverted UK Kickstarter funded in 5 hours

Date: Wednesday 7th May 2014 [16:08] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Anime

Once again Anime Limited have proved to be masters of the Kickstarter Campaign, by meeting their crowdfunding target for the definitive edition of Patema Inverted in 5 hours! Not 5 weeks, or even 5 days, but 5 hours! As a result, they've had to add extra rewards too.

The movie is also now out at select UK cinemas. So check out www.patema.co.uk for a screening near you.

Read More... | Source: Anime Limited

The Anime Encyclopedia, 3rd Revised Edition release details

Date: Wednesday 7th May 2014 [15:01] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Retail

Anime expert Jonathan Clements has just updated his website revealing that The Anime Encylopedia will have a third edition and is schedule for publication in December 2014.

The popular book written by Jonathan Clements and Helen McCarthy has been expanded with over 1,000 new entries, over 4,000 updates and corrections. This book is one of those amazing multiple purpose references. If you're an anime fan you should own a copy. If you're an academic it's essential. If you're running a website dedicated to news for fans of Japan (just like this one), you'll already have the first and second editions and regularly use them to fact check and research, so you'll be keen to get your hands on the third edition.

You can pre-order the book from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com. Remember that Amazon's pre-order price promise means you'll also pay the lowest price offered by Amazon, so if the price dips between now and when it's released, you'll only pay the lowest price.

Source: Jonathan Clements Website - Schoolgirl Milky Crisis

Create your own Kaburimono headgear at the Japan Foundation in London

Date: Tuesday 6th May 2014 [16:05] | Posted By: Joe
Category: > Events

The good folks from the Japan Foundation in London have sent us details of an upcoming event set to run at the end of May 2014.

Details as follows:

At the end of this month, The Japan Foundation will be hosting three workshops with Japanese artist Norio Nishihara, renowned for making bizarre and outlandish headgear known as "kaburimono". In the workshops, participants can make their very own Kaburimono similar to Nishihara's creations, using newspaper and coloured tape. They can also take their inspiration from almost anything - even their favourite anime or manga characters. The workshops will be held at the Japan Foundation in Russell Square, on the 30th May (3:00pm) and the 31st May (11:00am and 3:00pm).

This event is free, but booking in advance is essential to avoid disappointment as there are a limited number of places.

Read More... | Source: The Japan Foundation, London

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