By Andrew Osmond. In September 2007 I was in Tokyo at the so-called “Cinema Square” in the Shinjuku district. I saw fans queuing for one of the first screenings of the science-fiction/action film, Evangelion 1.0: You Are (Not) Alone. The film was revised a bit for its home release, and renamed Evangelion 1.11; it’s this version which Anime Limited is bringing out in a new edition. Continue Reading
By Andrew Osmond.
Earlier this month, there was a snippet of news in the film press about the Oscars. At first glance, it seems a technicality, but it could be serious, very serious, for any fan of animation beyond Hollywood. It’s about the way the nominees for Best Animated Feature Film are chosen – the three or five names read on the stage on Oscar night, while bits of the films are shown to a global TV audience.
Until this year’s Oscars, says the Hollywood Reporter, “It’s believed that fewer than 200 of the Academy’s 7,000 members, mostly from the animation and shorts branches, have been involved in selecting the nominees in the animation feature category.” Now that will change. All of the Academy’s 7,000 members will be invited to nominate the films (although some may choose to abstain).
Will changing the voting pool change the kind of films that end up on the nominee list, and enjoy the publicity that comes from it? Think of the latest Oscars. Pixar’s massively popular Finding Dory, one of the highest-grossing cartoon films ever made, wasn’t nominated for Best Animated Feature. Meanwhile two far, far smaller films – The Red Turtle and My Life as a Courgette (aka My Life as a Zucchini) – were. Or remember when Lego Movie was “snubbed” in 2014, while Princess Kaguya and Song of the Sea made the shortlist. Continue Reading
By Andrew Osmond.
Sword Art Online: Ordinal Scale, the newest instalment of the Sword Art Online franchise (and the film is all-new, barring some brief flashbacks) was first announced in Japan in October 2015. Weirdly, it has already predicted the future.
In the summer of the following year, anyone in a big Tokyo park like Ueno or Yoyogi would have witnessed huge crowds of people, mostly but not exclusively youngsters, flocking from one spot to another… all looking intently at their mobile phones. They weren’t on an evening stroll. No, they were competing to catch “virtual” creatures overlaid by commercial networks across not just Tokyo but through many countries round the planet. In New York, for instance, massive crowds stampeded to Central Park in search of something called a Vaporeon.
The Pokemon Go craze is so last year, but Ordinal Scale brilliantly predicts and supersedes it. Sword Art Online fans know the earlier adventures in the series took place in immersive virtual worlds, which you “visited” through games rewiring your senses, feeding you sight, sound and other sensations. You could cross a country while fighting a hundred epic battles, but your physical body always stayed in one place. Ordinal Scale changes that. Continue Reading
Norio Shioyama, who died with his wife Tokiko in a house fire yesterday, was first and foremost an illustrator, dragged unceremoniously into the anime world by the staffing demands of the industry’s boom-time. He was born in Kumamoto, the third of seven children of a sugar wholesaler, and passed his early years in the firm belief that he was going to become a writer. It was only in his teens that he discovered a love of art, but even then it was merely a hobby for him, with weekend trips to paint local landscapes, snatched during his years as an everyday salaryman. He also developed a love of the “Sunday funnies”, cartoon strips published in a local newspaper, to which he began sending samples of his own cartoon work.
Aged 21, he moved to Tokyo to work in newspaper sales, but continued with his under-the-counter cartooning. By 1966, as Japan’s animation industry expanded to four times its pre-Astro Boy size, he found work at the studio Hatena Pro, subcontracting work on Harris’s Wind and the iconic baseball story Star of the Giants. He began as a lowly tracer, working on a glass plate above a naked light bulb. “I’d get 30 yen a frame,” he said in an interview, “and I could manage maybe 50 frames a day, so that was 1500 yen. That was good money in those days, when the average daily wage was about 700 yen, so I started to tell myself I was doing pretty well!” Continue Reading
The time is (finally) nearly here! Our Ltd Collector's Edition Blu-ray release of the film Evangelion 1.11 arrives on 24th April and today we're delighted to bring you an unboxing of this release!
Synopsis: "The stunning rebuild of the anime masterpiece is now extended and enhanced with never before seen new animation and 266 visual and audio improvements.
Tokyo-3 still stands after most of civilization was decimated in the Second Impact. Now the city endures the ceaseless onslaught of the deadly Angels, bizarre creatures bent on eradicating the human race. To combat this strange and ruthless enemy, the government agency NERV constructs a fleet of towering humanoid machines – the Evas – and Shinji Ikari is called into action, reluctantly taking his place at the controls of Eva Unit 01.
Living a life of loneliness and questioning his existence, Shinji struggles to accept responsibility for mankind’s battle for survival in this visually striking rebuild of one of the most important anime of all time. Shinji will fight the Angels alongside the only person who might understand his plight – Rei Ayanami, the elusive and frail pilot of Eva Unit 00. In this film experience not to be missed, Shinji and Rei will struggle to learn a simple truth: when carrying the burden of humanity’s survival on your shoulders, you are not alone."
You can watch the trailer for this film below -
Our release comes packed inside a rigid case with a digipack to hold the two discs (1 x Blu-ray and 1 x DVD). Also included are art cards and a booklet that goes into details about the film itself.
On the discs themselves you get:
~ The main feature "Evangelion 1.11" in both English and Japanese with subtitles. Both audio options are in Dolby TrueHD: 6.1 on the Blu-ray and DVD discs.
~ Extras content is exclusive to the Blu-ray discs and you get Rebuild of Evangelion 1.0 "Shiro Sagisu Version" and "Joseph-Maurice Ravel Version", Angel of Doom Promotional Music Video, News Flashes, Movie Previews "Beautiful World Version 2", Beautiful World Version 2A" and "Beautiful World Version 2B".
And now onto photos of the finished product. You can click on these to enlarge them too if you want. Continue Reading