ADV adds Geneon to sales portfolio
If you've been paying attention to the cell phone market as of late, you've probably noticed the wave of consolidations over the past few years and the commercials announcing those consolidations. "Sprint is now the new AT&T," for instance. Or "Cingular is now the new AT&T."
Why talk about the cell phone industry here? As it turns out, the anime industry is going through its share of consolidation ... and now, Geneon is, in essence, the new ADV.
As of Oct. 1, Geneon will continue to license and produce anime series, but ADV will now be responsible for marketing, selling and distributing the entire Geneon catalog.
The cross-marketing ramifications of such a deal are quite tantalizing for ADV. For instance, several CD soundtracks sold by Geneon's music division, including "Excel Saga," "Noir," "Madlax," and "Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi," now fall under the umbrella of ADV, which holds the anime licenses for those series. Geneon's license for the anime "Little Snow Fairy Sugar" also would dovetail nicely with ADV Manga's license for the manga version of that story.
As for Geneon, this could be the move that wipes it off the casual anime fan's radar. Whether the Geneon logo will still appear on DVD cases remains unknown at this point, but the company's days of having a presence at major anime conventions are definitely through.
But there's another consideration. Anyone who remembers attending local anime convention Kawaii Kon in 2006 might recall that one of the guests, singer Yoko Ishida, was closely tied to the Geneon representative who also attended. The loss of Geneon's marketing department also means one fewer avenue to bringing Japanese guests to American shores ...
Kawaii Kon talk
Speaking of Kawaii Kon, the wild weekend ride that has become an annual springtime tradition around these parts finally has a date set for next year's event.
Mark those calendars (and get those costumes, yaoi paddles, Pocky and other assorted tools of the anime convention-trade ready) for April 18-20, once again at the Hawaii Convention Center. The guests announced so far:
» Mari Iijima, the voice actress/singer who played Lynn Minmay in both the Japanese and English versions of "Macross."
» Rikki Simons, the voice of the robot Gir in "Invader Zim," and his wife, artist Tavisha Wolfgarth-Simons. Working as Studio Tavicat, the couple has produced several graphic novels, including the three-volume series "Shutterbox" for Tokyopop.
As always, check out www.kawaii-kon.org for the latest updates ...
Meeting roll call
» MangaBento: Remaining meetings this month for this group of anime- and manga-inspired artists are 1 to 4 p.m. Sundays at the Academy Art Center, 1111 Victoria St., Room 200. For more information, visit mangabento. googlepages.com ...
Cel Shaded, a look at the world of Japanese anime and manga, appears every Monday. Reach Jason S. Yadao