Monday, March 31

Mamoru Oishii's Sky Crawlers

Teaser trailer 1

Teaser trailer 2

Game trailer

The Sky Crawlers is a Japanese novel series by Hiroshi Mori. First published by Chuōkōron-shinsha in June 2001 and spanning five books, it follows the journeys and tribulations of a group of young fighter pilots involved in dogfight warfare, and is set during an alternate historical period. The series is unlike other works by Mori, noted for his series of mystery novels. The art for the series is illustrated by noted mangaka Kenji Tsuruta.

Now from I understand is it is alternate Second World War aerial combat mixed with heavy philosophy, something that this director notably liked to talk about, using violence/death/destruction/military as metamorphsis of his existenalist philosophy. Movies like Ghost in the Shell and live action Avalon reinforced this aspect of him very vocally.

On June 20, 2007, it was announced that the novel would be adapted into a anime film, directed by Mamoru Oshii, which is slated for release in 2008.

Animated by Production I.G, the film will be written by Chihiro Itō, feature character designs by Tetsuya Nishio, music by Kenji Kawai and will be distributed across Japan by Warner Bros. Japan.

Mori had stated that he felt The Sky Crawlers was the "most difficult" of his works to adapt, and had given his consent to the making of the film after learning of Oshii's involvement as director.

Now this part intrigued me. Just how obtuse the novel story is? I will check it out since it have Oishii and IG studios name in it. One thing struck me about the trailer is the heavy dose of melancholy and gloomy mood. My kind of anime.

Certainly too, Warner Brothers name spiked my interest even higher.

Japanese movie site

Real Drive, new anime from Studio IG and Masamune Shirow

2061 AD. Fifty years have passed since mankind developed the Network society. It was anticipated that this new infrastructure would realize a utopia where people connected with each other at the level of consciousness. However, new social problems such as personal data leaks and proliferation of manipulated information began to surface. Nevertheless, people still relied on the Network to exchange information, and proved unable to opt to abandon it.

In due course, a new Network realm with more effective security measures was developed. This was called Meta Real Network, usually abbreviated as "the Metal."

The Metal accommodated personal memory data within protected virtual stand-alone organic cyber enclaves called bubble shells and eventually pervaded the everyday lives of people.

However, people gradually learned to release and explode their instincts within the secure environment of the Metal. The unleashed instincts pushed each individual's consciousness to drown in the sea of information and to be exposed to the pressures of desire. Meanwhile, norms and regulations continued to bind their real world lives. Thus, strange friction between the two worlds began to manifest themselves as aberrations beyond the bounds of the imaginable.
Experts who challenged the deep sea of the Metal to investigate and decipher such aberrations were called cyber divers.

This is a story of a cyber diver, Masamichi Haru, who investigates the incidents that lie between Reality and the Metal.

Masamune Shirow. IG Studios. Cyberpunk.

What else you need? I am in this one, like totally fuck yeah.

Japanese site

Blade of the Immortal Anime Trailer

Here it is, enjoy. Still look at it with great feeling of "oh shit, it is gonna suck".

Saturday, March 29

Someday's Dreamers no 2

Mahou Tsukai Taisetsu na Koto no 2 is coming to grace 2008. Again, I don't expect from this anime, I do enjoy the placid 1st season. This time though, the story focus on another witch, not the previous one.

Ultraviolet the anime?

The Animax satellite television network confirmed in a Tokyo International Anime Fair 2008 press conference on Thursday that its Ultraviolet: Code 044 anime is based on Kurt Wimmer's 2006 live-action Ultraviolet film starring Milla Jovovich. The anime was pre-announced in a press release for the event. Famed director Osamu Dezaki (Ashita no Joe, Aim For The Ace!, Lupin III movies) will supervise the animators of Madhouse and Tezuka Productions. Dezaki's longtime collaborator Akio Sugino (Ashita no Joe, Aim For The Ace!, Black Jack The Movie, Golgo 13: The Professional) will design the characters. Romi Paku (Fullmetal Alchemist's Ed, NANA's Nana Osaki) will voice the main character "044." 044 is a female warrior genetically engineered with high combat skills and ordered by the government to annihilate a vampire army. Madhouse founder Masao Maruyama will produce with Sony Pictures Entertainment (Japan). The project will premiere on Animax on July 1 to mark the anime network's 10th anniversary.


Yeap the good old Milla Jovovich inspired movie is now in anime format. I honestly do not expect much out of it. The movie reminds me of lots of cheesy action, an updated version of gun kata made popular by Equilibrium and very high body count.

I do wonder if the anime is going to repeat the same thing as the movie does.

I will watch it with little expectation. But voice actress of Claire from Claymore is here so, some compensation for me, I guess.

Tuesday, March 25

Blade of the Immortal Anime.

The official Japanese website for the recently announced Blade of the Immortal television anime is now online with a sample image. The site also revealed that the project will run on Japan's AT-X animation satellite channel. Yoshimitsu Yamashita (Murder Princess, Samurai Champloo animation director) will design the characters that Production I.G's BeeTrain subsidiary (.hack// franchise, Noir, El Cazador de la Bruja) will animate.

Original Site

Honestly speaking, I am not too keen on the adaptation. The mangaka himself did not see how this can be translated into anime. Did not help when I saw the name BEE TRAIN. Yes, the studio that loves do the pan shots of eye all the time. Ugh.

But, I shall wait and see if I was proven wrong.

Tekken's real life inspiration for Kazuya and Heihachi Karate of Mishima Clan.

Andy Hug is K1 champion, hailed from Switzerland. In Japan he is known as the "Blue Eye Samurai" and based on Kyokushimkai Karate. Died in 2000 due to leukemia, he is considered the one who popularized K1 with his cinematic fighting style.

His infamous chopping kick or axe kick.

Look out for the stunning backhand punch.

Namco must have use him as template for Mishima Karate seen in their highly successful Tekken game series.

Banner of the Stars 3 tribute of some sorts

Nice tribute to this very under the radar 3 OVA of the excellent space opera.

Speed Racer the Movie

Trailer no 2

Yeap, it is here. I am looking forward towards it. Offical website

Old anime OP.

Interesting look at Sailormoon

Monday, March 24

A more sinister Aibo?

Hey, this is the pic of new toy coming out from land of rising sun. It looks like Gigantor superhero robot which one of enduring cult mecha classic in Japan.

According the news, it sounds like a mecha geek version of Aibo. A lot of articulation can be seen on the company's website.

Toy Site in Japanese

A video is here

Anti anime piracy trojan, a vigilante of sorts?

Copied in verbatim from the news, in case it got deleted.

"A Japanese man has admitted in court to writing a data-destroying Trojan horse.

Masato Nakatsuji, a 24 year-old who in January became the first ever virus writer to be arrested in Japan, admitted in Kyoto District Court that he created a Trojan and used popular copyrighted animation footage to spread it via the internet.

The malware was designed ultimately to wipe music and movie files from users' computers.

The malicious code, believed to be the Pirlames Trojan, was spread via the controversial Winny file-sharing system in Japan in 2007.

Nakatsuji made the admission during the first day of the trial, where he answered charges of copyright infringement and defaming an acquaintance by embedding his photograph into the malicious code.

"Al Capone was charged with tax evasion rather than racketeering, and Nakatsuji is being charged with copyright infringement rather than for creating malware," said Graham Cluley, senior technology consultant for Sophos.

"If he is found guilty, the general public are unlikely to worry that it was his ill-advised choice of graphics which got him into legal trouble rather than virus writing.
"However, a clear message needs to be sent to the computer underground that they will not be shown a blind eye if they spread malicious code and damage innocent people's computers and data."

Prosecutors described how Nakatsuji is alleged to have created the Trojan horse, attached it to copyrighted animated pictures and planted links to it on internet message forums.

However, Nakatsuji's defence has argued that the malware was not seriously malignant, and that justice would not be served by punishing the graduate student for spreading the Trojan when there were no specific laws against doing so.

Isamu Kaneko, the author of the Winny file-sharing program, was fined by a Japanese court in December 2006 for assisting in copyright violation"

Original article

Be careful, or one day it will wipe clean your stuff!!!!!!!

Sunday, March 16

Stellvia of the Universe PS2 game endings

Hmmmm, bumming around Youtube and found these gems. This are endings from PS 2 version of Stellvia story, quite similar to Tokimeki Memorial.

Bad END.....

Shima's ending....

Arisa's ending

Akira's ending

Yayoi's ending

Rina's ending

Ren's ending

Najima's ending

Ayaka's ending

Reira's ending

Enjoy, for there will be no 2nd season of this well directed anime.

Cool Japan campaign.

Japan's new ambassador: a cartoon cat

TOKYO (AFP) — Japan's newest ambassador might be among the most listened to in the diplomatic corps, even if he has no ears himself.

The foreign ministry announced Friday it was appointing the cartoon cat Doraemon as the nation's first "anime ambassador," in Japan's latest effort to promote its soft power through its animation industry.

Doraemon -- or at least a person dressed as the earless, blue-and-white cat -- will receive his official assignment letter from Foreign Minister Masahiko Komura in a ceremony scheduled for Wednesday, officials said.

The character will appear in films to be shown in Japanese missions overseas, talking about the country's lifestyle and customs.

"By appointing Doraemon, we hope people in other countries will understand Japanese anime better and deepen their interest in Japanese culture," said Yuko Hotta, a foreign ministry official.

Created by a cartoonist under the penname Fujiko F. Fujio, Doraemon is the main character in an animation series that is among the most popular in Japan and widely known in much of Asia.

The friendly cat travels back to the present from the 22nd century to help out a schoolboy by lending an "anywhere door," which allows people to travel wherever they please.

The government has been trying to turn growing worldwide interest in its anime cartoons, manga comics and cuisine into political capital with a campaign promoting "Cool Japan."

Last year, Japan launched the International Manga Award for foreign artists. The first winner was Hong Kong's Lee Chi Ching.


This would confirm and follow up to Taro Aso's campaign to promote Japan using anime, as outlined in earlier post here.


This anime does caught my eye and I will make detailed discussion on it soon. However, the op song really reminds me of another ALI project work on Rozen Maiden.

The trailer looks very somber indeed.

The ending looks a bit uninspired though.