By Von Jared Omo
Anime Expo is done and another year we must wait to see what the anime industry has in store for us next. This year, I had the honors of meeting with two very familiar names in the manga/anime industry today: CMX and Funimation.
CMX manga, a branch of DC Comics who publishes many known anime such as Crayon Shinchan, promoted one of their up and coming releases: Batman:Death Mask. The manga revolves around the dark crusader, Batman (whose alter ego is billionaire Bruce Wayne) and his struggle to find this new killer that has been terrorizing the city of Gotham. However, the killer has ties to Bruce’s training in Japan. Does the killer know that Bruce is Batman and did this past experience drive him to start his killing spree? The manga is done by manga superstar Natsume (creator of Togari). He debuts his unique vision of the Dark Knight with the miniseries collected in this compact, manga-sized edition! Check out http://www.dccomics.com/cmx/ for more info!
Next we go on to Funimation. Their booth showcased their upcoming releases as well. They’ve got some movies they plan to release in 2008 and here’s a list of what’s to come:
One Piece Movie: The Desert Princess and The Pirates Adventures in Alabasta – From the popular manga and the series currently airing on Cartoon Network comes the eighth movie from the One Piece tale. Six pirates may be all that stands between salvation and total destruction. The island kingdom of Alabasta is about to erupt in civil war – a war engineered by Crocodile, one of the Seven Warlords of the Sea, and his criminal organization Baroque Works. Monkey D. Luffy, his Straw Hat pirates and Princess Vivi race to the island, where the strongest warriors of Baroque Works wait to stop them.
Genghis Khan – To the Ends of the Earth and Sea — This full-scale Japanese epic follows the life of Genghis Khan, founder of the Mongolian Empire who took the throne in 1206. The film, adapted from a novel by Seiichi Morimura, covers Genghis’ life, his battles and his relationships with women. The infamous historical figure was brought to life by director by Shinichiro Sawai and stars Takashi Sorimachi, Rei Kikukawa, Mayumi Wakamura, Yoshihiko Hakamada and Kenichi Matsuyama.
Vexille — Director Fumihiko Sori and the team behind the 2004 big-screen version of APPLESEED have reunited to create VEXILLE. In addition, Paul Oakenfold of THE MATRIX RELOADED has created the score for the film written by Haruka Handa. A dark, futuristic CGI anime about illegal robotics research and set in 2067 Japan, the story follows Japan‘s isolation after the United Nations bans further research on robotic technology out of concerns of a threat to mankind. The U.S. has intelligence that Japan is developing the banned technology and dispatches a team led by a female commander named Vexille on a secret mission to determine Japan‘s ambitions.
Love and Honor — An award winning masterpiece, of sacrifice and devotion, LOVE AND HONOR weaves a timeless tale set in the waning days of feudal Japan. Directed by Academy Award® nominee Yoji Yamada (THE TWILIGHT SAMURAI) and starring Takuya Kimura (2046), LOVE AND HONOR depicts the emotional intensity of an age when respect was more valuable than riches and love cut more truly than any sword.
Shinnojo Mimura is a samurai sharing a hand to mouth existance with his beautiful wife Kayo. Frustrated by his lowly status with the castle ranks, Shinnojo dreams of better days instructing children in the way of the sword. But destiny, it would seem, has other plans…
A freak accident takes the warrior’s sight, leaving Shinnojo cursed. Losing his status and pride, his hopes and dreams, and even himself to his life of eternal darkness, only one path lies open for Shinnojo: That of the true and noble samurai.
And for you anime fans out there, Funimation is releasing Tsubasa Vol.7 on DVD! Check out the trailer at the TMEVLOG right here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r79w13gL55Q