Posts Tagged ‘adv’
Today Funimation has re-released a little horror/action series called Chrno Crusade for fans to buy, enjoy and savor. And believe me, there is a lot within this series to become completely lost in. Produced by Gonzo in 2003, Chrno Crusade managed to find life and rave reviews within the shores of region 1 thanks to ADV in 2006 (though not really the legions of fans that it deserved) before disappearing from radars and store shelves quietly. Finally though, a brand new audience can discover the demon fighting thrill ride that is this series.
Taking place in late 1920’s New York, Chrno Crusade focuses on a demon fighting nun named Rosette Christopher (Hilary Haag in the English cast) in the Order of Magdalene and her demon partner, Chrono (Greg Ayres), as she searches for her missing younger brother Joshua (Chris Patton). As she continues to search however an enemy appears bent on bringing Hell to the surface and it turns out that he requires Joshua to do it. An amazing series all the way through, here the things that you should know ahead of time before starting in.
Taking place in 1920’s New York, the staff behind this series really wanted to reflect that through the language. This is particularly true of the English script which is filled with references to ‘apple Sauce’, ‘the bee’s knees’ and other references appropriate for the period. This can sometimes be annoying though more often than not I found it to be a really nice touch that helps to create the world.
You Won’t Be Saved But…
All of the main characters from this series are connected to the church in one way or another but do not let this scare you off. Within the 26 episodes Chrno Crusade explores religion from new perspectives while asking questions that will leave audiences with something to think about for days afterward. Even if you’re not interested in western religion at all, the points that this series raise make this series much more thought provoking and thoughtful than anyone would suspect.
Moe Before There Was Moe:
Satella is easily, hands down the best fiery German redhead since Asuka and Azmaria is one of the cutest sidekicks in anime history. This is just another point to Chrno Crusade that completes the entire picture. While the foreground is never lacking in interesting events or situations, the background is equally filled with the side stories of the easily likeable supporting cast.
I don’t own a big home theater system so this is hardly an issue for me but if you do own one, get your ear plugs ready. As Rosette remembers moments from her past with Joshua there will be moments that constantly shift from soft whispers to blood curdling screams. Sometimes it even happens within the same sentence.
Get Your Tissues Ready:
If you take nothing else away from this article just remember that you’re going to need to stock up on tissues. I’m not interested in spoiling how it ends but this is one of the best climaxes of the decade. No major open questions, just satisfaction and buckets of tears.
One of the most underappreciated series of the last few years, Chrno Crusade is one of the titles that I worried no one would ever release again. Thanks to Funimation though, a brand new wave of anime fans will get to see one of the best series to be produced by Gonzo (possibly ever). If you weren’t watching anime a few years ago or you were but didn’t check this one out, I cannot let this end this without urging you to change that. A classic to be appreciated, if you like action, demons and wonderful writing this should be in your collection. If you’d like to check it out yourself, the series is available in a brand new collection on Right Stuf and Amazon.
You remember Konami right? If you were a gamer in the 80’s you at least still remember the beloved Konami code for 30 lives in Contra but did you know that they also produce anime? Well, they do and have announced today that they are branching out into the anime rental market. After a year testing the waters through video game rentals, Konami now plans to offer the same through a new store on the Playstation network. Through the store, fans can now rent episodes of the 2006 romance produced by AIC ASTA, Tokimeki Memorial OnlyLove for about 3 bucks a pop (250 yen).
Fans then have the option to watch the episode at any point over 30 days or however many times they want within 72 hours of the first time its viewed. In the future the company is also promising other series to be made available such as Quiz Magic Academy, Skygirls, Saint October, Fairy Musketeers (available on Crunchyroll) and Best Student Council (licensed and released in the states by ADV).
As far as I can tell, this service is only going to be available in Japan. If you do have access to the Playstation Network in Japan this isn’t such a bad thing though. The rest of us will just have to live with tracking down DVDs and streams.
So yesterday afternoon while I was at work, Funimation was busy holding their 4th online convention panel. While there were some whispers about a formerly simulcast series finally getting a DVD release in 2011, the big news of the afternoon was that the rescue of 4 Gonzo titles formally held by ADV: Chrono Crusade, Gantz, Kaleido Star and Peacemaker Kurogane. All four series were originally released in the middle part of the decade when anime was still “cool”.
Chrono Crusade, Peacemaker and Kaleido Star were all originally released to DVD by ADV in 2004. Chrono Crusade is a 1930’s ‘nuns with guns’ series about a war being waged between the devil worshippers and the Order of Magdalene who want to stop their evil plans. One sister in the order, Rosette Christopher, actually has a devil for her assistant and is on a search for her missing younger brother.
Peacemaker is a historic drama which re-imagines the Shinsengumi in the period before the Meiji revolution. A young kid wants to join their ranks and becomes their mascot of sorts as he watches the events of the era play out in front of him. A very dark and violent series filled with wonderful images and characters.
Kaleido Star is the odd one out simply by not being a bloody, violent action fest. Directed by Junichi Sato (Sailor Moon, Aria the Animation), this one has an interesting history. Partially financed by the former ADV, this was the first series to get a dual DVD release by going on sale the same day as it did in Japan. Not that it made a difference, anime meets Cirque de Soleil led to a less than receptive audience who missed out on a very nice looking and sweet story about a girl chasing her dream.
Gantz… hyper violent and bloody series about teens being sucked into a game for their lives. Blah blah blah I hated it blah blah. As much as I hated this series, this rescue makes more sense than anything else. When it was first released in 2005, ADV attempted to use the Japanese style of release putting only 2 episodes on each volume instead of the 4-5 that fans were used to. Fans were livid and Anime on DVD went so far as to boycott the releases until ADV changed the release. I don’t have actual numbers to back up the claim but one would guess that this was a major cash drain for the company after it was all said and done. With a new live action movie in the works though, a brand new box set release could be a nice little boost to Funimation (not that they really need one).
So 3 out of 4 of these releases are enough to get me excited and I really hope that new fans will discover these series. If nothing else, Kaleido Star and Chrono Crusade are more than worth your time! Anyone else excited for these rescues?
I’ll admit it… on a certain level; I’m a bad anime geek. As much as I love watching anime and getting to see titles from the present and not entirely recent past, there are still a number of classic titles from the ‘80s and ‘90s that I have yet to sit down and actually watch for various reasons. One of those series is the original Super Dimension Fortress Macross. Luckily for me and every other fan who has been putting off watching this series, Hulu and ADV have come to rescue and uploaded the original series for fans to view for free.
Originally released in 1982 (it actually premiered in Japan exactly four weeks before I was born), the epic sci-fi series takes place in the distant future of 1999 when an alien craft crashes into Earth. After the humans make it their own and launch into space a decade later, an alien race makes their presence known thus beginning an intergalactic war.
If you know your anime history, you’ll recognize the name Macross as one of three series which would eventually be reedited into the hugely popular Robotech in the US spawning an entire generation of anime fans. Back in Japan however, it became (and still is) a hugely popular franchise which has spawned a number of sequels, OVAs, movies, manga and merchandise (including last year’s spinoff movie Macross Frontier – The False Songstress-).
So that’s it everyone, if you’re an anime fan and you haven’t seen the series yet (which includes me) you’ve run out of excuses: It’s available online, for free, dubbed into English. I doubt I’ll be watching all 36 episodes in one long marathon but I bet an episode or two each night before I go to bed could be worked into my schedule.
Early this morning, Funimation sent out a small stack of press releases which was to be expected. It is Monday morning and they did announce three new titles over the weekend. Along with the new title releases though, an additional release was waiting for me announcing the hiring of Chris Moujaes as Director of Original Entertainment. In the new role, Moujaes’ primary duties will involve negotiating with overseas companies to produce new original programming based on other properities. In short, he’s the guy that Funimation has hired to help them co-produce new anime in Japan. Previously his work included property development for AOL Kids and eventually even formed his own company, Boomstar, which specialized in negotiating international co-productions.
As others have already pointed out, Funimation going in this direction isn’t unheard of. Manga Entertainment had a hand in Kite, Bandai had done it previously with Eureka Seven and ADV even had a stake in Kaleido Star and all achieved their own levels of success (though of those three, I think you could argue that Bandai came out the best). This time though, Funimation has something that none of the others did: market dominance. Funimation is doing just fine right now and can afford to take some chances. I wouldn’t be shocked if I found out that Funimation already had a short list of titles to pursue right away so I suspect we’ll hear about the fruits of this venture before the end of 2010. Of course, that’s just my gut instinct once again and does not represent reality.
Update 11/27: Over the last couple of days, ANN was able to get more solid details regarding the new venture from Funimation. The direction they are headed with this is to sign on studios that produce anime to animate non Japanese properties. Now before you get upset with Funimation for “bastardizing anime into a bloody heap by telling stoopid non Japanese stories” think about this: The Animatrix, Witchblade and the upcoming Halo Legends and Madhouse Marvel quartet are all non Japanese stories having already received or are in the process of getting the anime treatment. Personally I was hoping to hear that Funimation were going to fun some original ideas/projects but this revelation still seems like an idea worth supporting.
Full Press Release below the Cut
While I’m not really a gamer, the idea of Halo being turned into an anime has been a hot topic for debate and discussion throughout the year even for me. Earlier this year when it was revealed that Microsoft and Warner Bros. would be working with several highly respected Japanese directors and studios to create an anthology of Halo anime stories, the buzz was felt all around the blogosphere and even spread into the mainstream media. Though this seems only natural when names such as Shinji Arameki (Appleseed), Mamoru Oshii (Blood: The Last Vampire, Sky Crawlers), Bones (FMA, Cowboy Bebop, Tokyo Magnitude 8.0), Toei Animation (DBZ, One Piece), Production I.G. (Ghost in the Shell, Eden of the East) and others were to be involved.
Tonight it’s been reported further that Halo Legends will be getting its English language localization from Seraphim Digital Studios (formally known as Amusement Park Media owned by what used to be known as ADV) with ADV founder John Ledford serving as executive producer while veteran director Steven Foster (Red Garden, Appleseed: Ex Machina) will be stepping in as ADR director and writer. The anthology of stories (which are described as seven stories told over a course of eight 10-17 minute episodes) will be released on February 5th 2010 in special two disc DVD and Blu ray releases.
Preview footage for the release has long since been floating around the internet (and even premiered on Spike TV over the summer) but here’s a reminder of what Studio 4C’s part of the release will look like:
It’s worth noting that this will be the first dub to be produced by Seraphim Digital Studios since ADV became Section 23 earlier this year by splitting their assets into seperate companies. While I’m sure many long time fans would love to hear familiar voices from the ghosts of ADV’s past return to the studios, this could also be a chance to get fresh talent into the booth and create an entirely new start. Section 23 will not be handling the distribution for this title after all (I think Microsoft can handle that on their own) but if you hadn’t noticed, Halo is not a small franchise and a successful localization would pay off big dividends. Is this the resurrection that fans have been waiting for? I doubt it but I can certainly think of worse ways to start off a new year.
Original creator Kazuya Minekura (Saiyuki, Bus Gamer) has announced that the Saiyuki Gaiden prequel manga will be getting made into an OVA. There was no release date attached to the announcement unfortunately. Originally serialized in 1997, the manga series has since spawned eight different anime adaptations (the last one being Saiyuki Reload: Burial in 2007). The good news for fans is that once upon a time what used to be ADV released the original TV series in 2003 (and 2005 and 2006 and 2008… oh and once again in 2009) and Saiyuki: Requiem movie in 2005. Then again, Geneon also released the Saiyuki Reload series in 2005 so I’m not even going to begin to guess what has become of the license by now.
And today has officially become a day of mourning.
ADV has announced via a press release this morning that as of today they are no longer in the anime business. In a move that should not be a surprise to anyone who has been following them, ADV has finalized the transfer of their assets to various companies. According to the release, five separate companies now own the assets once owned by the once leading Texas company.
In the deals made, AEsir Holdings will be taking over a portion of ADV’s titles while distribution will be handled by SXION 23 (Section 23 Films), The Anime Network is now owned by Valkyrie Media Partners and finally Seraphim Studios has obtained the production facility, Amusement Park Media.
At the moment, details are sketchy on what exactly this means for the ADV library. I have emails out regarding which titles will be taken on by AEsir and if the companies will be working together to keep the brand alive.
I will provide further updates and my thoughts in the coming hours. For now, let’s share a moment of silence for a company that provided us with hours of entertainment throughout the last 16 years or so. I have attached the full press release below the cut for those who wish to read the fine details (warning: lots of PR jargon).
UPDATE: In the last couple of hours, new details have emerged regarding the new owners of ADV’s assets. According to both Anime Vice and ANN, all of the companies that now own assets of ADV are based in Houston (where ADV was headquartered) and are owned by one parent which appears to be AEsir. On the other hand, Seraphim Studios, Valkyrie Media Partners, and Sxion 23 all share the same address in Houston. Does this mean anything? Not really beyond the fact that one company has transferred various ADV assets to their various branches. More updates as AEsir reveals details for their future plans.
Well, an entire day has passed which means that more than enough time has passed to straighten out the story with ADV. Multiple sources have reported today on what has transpired with ADV: they’re out, Section 23 is in. Retailers have already begun reporting that Section 23 will be distributing all of ADV’s former titles and many of the current staff has already begun working there. In an editorial written by Chris MacDonald at ANN, the events leading up to this and an informed opinion on the future is laid out for fans. If you don’t want to read through it all, this is the part that I took away as most important:
“This may be the end of ADV Films as a label, or possibly, if the ADV Films trademark was among the “intellectual property” that AEsir Holdings acquired from A.D.Vision, Inc., Aesir may continue to use the long established and well respected ADV Films brand.”
Stay tuned for more updates in the coming days since this is hardly the last we’ve heard of it.
Right Stuf has revealed today via new preorder listings that Sentai Filmworks has acquired the license for both ‘He Is My Master’ and ‘Clannad: After Story’. The first title is an ecchi-ish comedy that originally premiered in 2005. Following a 14 year old hero named Yoshitaka who after inheriting a huge fortune, hired two runaway girls to be his maids and call him goshujin-sama (master). The twelve episode series will be released in one complete box set by ADV on October 6th.
Premiering later in the month is the second license revealed, Clannad: After Story, which serves as a sequel to the original moe bait series from Kyoto Animation. Originally an additional ending in the visual novel created by Key, the series follows Tomoyo through his graduating year and the new set of hardships that await him there. It appears that the 26 episode series will be released in two sets with the first being released October 20th.
Updated: While scanning the list of pre-orders, I completely neglected to mention the license of the series Ghost Hound, my apologies for not getting it in the first time. Anyway, originally released in 2007 the supernatural series was produced as the 20th anniversary project of Production I.G. The 22 episode series will be released in multiple sets (two I’m guessing) starting on October 20th.
Fans of the classic ‘Fist of the North Star’ series take note for Sentai has announced their latest license. The latest in the Sentai Filmworks licensing spree (this makes at least eight license announcements this year with many more sure to follow) is ‘Legend of the Dark Kings: A Fist of the North Star Story’ (Hokuto no Ken Raoh Gaiden: Ten no Haoh). ADV PR Rep Chris Oarr revealed to ADV Nation that the thirteen episode series will be released in one subtitle only box set on September 15th. Originally airing last year from October to December, the series follows Raoh in a time before the original ‘Fist of the North Star’ story begins. RightStuf has already listed the set for preorder.