In this week’s edition of Anime News, we delve into a mix of intriguing stories from the world of anime and manga. From a prominent YouTuber facing legal woes to the thrilling highlights of Jump Festa 2024, there’s something for every anime enthusiast. Join us as we journey through the latest happenings and announcements in the vibrant realm of Japanese animation.
Table of contents
- Japanese YouTuber Sentenced to 2 Years in Prison for Sharing Gameplay and Anime Videos
- Alice to Therese no Maboroshi Koujou Movie Releases Short Music Video
- Toshio Furukawa, Romi Park, and More Join Pluto Anime’s Cast
- HIDIVE Adds The Vexations of a Shut-In Vampire Princess to Fall 2023 Simulcast Lineup
- One Piece Releases Opening Animation For SEKAI NO OWARI’s “The Peak”
- Jump Festa 2024 Event Reveals Stacked Lineup of Featured Titles
- Pro Mahjong Player, Former Nogizaka46 Member Kana Nakata to Perform Pon no Michi OP
- Miyazaki’s The Boy and the Heron Anime Film Rises to 88th Highest-Grossing in Japan
- Gintama Anime Thorny Arc Episodes Head to Theaters in Japan
- Crunchyroll to Premiere A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special, Dr. Stone At NYCC
- Goblin Slayer Season 2 Reveals New Visual, Premiere Date
Japanese YouTuber Sentenced to 2 Years in Prison for Sharing Gameplay and Anime Videos
The Japanese YouTuber Shinobu Yoshida, aged 53, has been sentenced by the Sendai District Court to two years in prison. Additionally, he received a five-year suspended sentence and a one million yen fine for sharing gameplay videos of “Steins;Gate” and a video of the anime “Spy x Family.” This marks the first instance of someone being convicted for violating copyright laws through the sharing of gameplay videos. The presiding judge, Koichi Nakamura, imposed the suspended sentence, which means it will not be enforced if Yoshida does not commit any crimes within the next five years (the prosecution initially requested a 2-year prison sentence and the yen fine).
The defendant faced charges of copyright infringement for posting three videos on YouTube without authorization, spanning from September 2019 to May 2022. These videos included a “spoiler” gameplay video revealing the ending of the “Steins;Gate: My Darling’s Embrace” game. Another video featured edited content from the “Spy Family” anime.
The prosecution contended that Yoshida’s actions constituted “a malicious act that trampled on the effort of content creation,” as they discouraged the purchase of the original products. In contrast, the defendant argued during the trial that he wanted to share his creations as part of his hobby.
“Steins;Gate: My Darling’s Embrace” (Steins;Gate: Hiyoku Renri no Darling) is a visual novel video game initially developed by 5pb and released for the Xbox 360 in 2011. It has seen various ports, including an English version released by Spike Chunsoft for the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Microsoft Windows in 2019.
Alice to Therese no Maboroshi Koujou Movie Releases Short Music Video
A lengthy preview of the upcoming Alice to Therese no Maboroshi Koujou (Alice and Therese’s Illusion Factory) anime movie has been unveiled. This preview comes in the form of a short music video, offering two minutes of the theme song “Shin-on” performed by Miyuki Nakajima.
Alice to Therese no Maboroshi Koujou is scheduled to premiere in Japan on September 15. This movie is produced by MAPPA and directed by Mari Okada, known for her work as the scriptwriter for Anohana and series composer for Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans. It marks her second directorial work, following the 2018 P.A. Works-produced fantasy film Maquia: When the Promised Flower Blooms.
The story centers around three teenagers in a gloomy town that once witnessed a devastating steelworks explosion. The male protagonist, Masamune Kikuiri, played by Junya Enoki, unexpectedly follows the enigmatic Mutsumi Sagami, voiced by Reina Ueda, to the steelworks’ fifth blast furnace. Here, they encounter a feral girl named Itsumi, portrayed by Misaki Kuno. This meeting disrupts the delicate balance of their world, igniting an uncontrollable urge for love between boys and girls who are disenchanted with their mundane lives, setting the stage for destruction.
The anime boasts a talented staff, including Tadashi Hiramatsu as assistant director, known for his work on “Maquia: When the Promised Flower Blooms” and character design in “Jujutsu Kaisen” Season 1. Yuriko Ishii, who worked on “Maquia: When the Promised Flower Blooms,” serves as character designer and chief animation director. Seimei Kidokoro, the assistant director for “Fireworks,” takes on the role of chief unit director. Other key members include art director Kazuki Higashiji, color designer Tomoko Washida, compositing director Yuusuke Tannawa, and music composer Masaru Yokoyama, known for his work on “Horimiya.”
Toshio Furukawa, Romi Park, and More Join Pluto Anime’s Cast
Another round of cast members for the upcoming Pluto anime adaptation has been revealed, and they include Toshio Furukawa, Romi Park, and Kenyu Horiuchi.
The full list of announced names are:
• Furukawa as Dr. Ochanomizu
• Eizou Tsuda as Dr. Tenma
• Park as Helena, the wife of Gesicht
• Michio Hazama as Duncan
• Kazuhiro Yamaji as Dr. Abullah
• Hideyuki Tanaka as Brau-1589
• Horiuchi as President Alexander
Pluto is scheduled to make its debut on Netflix on October 26. This adaptation is based on the manga series published by Shogakukan from 2003 to 2009 and crafted by Naoki Urasawa. It offers a fresh perspective on the “The Greatest Robot on Earth” arc from the renowned Astro Boy series by Osamu Tezuka.
Viz Media, the publisher of the manga titled Pluto: Urasawa x Tezuka, provides a gripping overview of this reimagined tale. It unfolds in a world where humans and robots coexist harmoniously. The story revolves around the lives of seven great robots: Atom, Mont Blanc, North No. 2, Brando, Hercules, Epsilon, and Gesicht. However, their existence takes a dramatic turn when they become embroiled in a virtual nightmare of terror, marked by chaos and devastation. A relentless killer is on the prowl, but his motives remain enigmatic. The suspense deepens with the introduction of Pluto, named after the lord of the underworld, in this finely crafted work of science fiction and intrigue.
The anime adaptation is brought to life by Studio M2, with Toshio Kawaguchi serving as the director and Studio M2 founder Masao Maruyama as one of the executive producers. The creative team includes notable talents such as Shigeru Fujita as character designer, Chikako Shibata as art director, Mitsuhiro Sato as compositing director, Takahiro Miyata as CG and Special Effects Director, Masafumi Mima as sound director, Yuugo Kanno as the music composer, and Urasawa himself as the creative advisor.
The stellar cast lineup features voices like Youko Hikasa as Astro/Atom, Minori Suzuki as Uran, Shinshuu Fuji as Gesicht, Hiroki Yasumoto as Mont Blanc, Koichi Yamadera as North No. 2, Hidenobu Kiuchi as Brando, Rikiya Koyama as Hercules, Mamoru Miyano as Epsilon, and Toshihiko Seki as Pluto. With such a talented crew and cast, Pluto promises to be an anime that seamlessly blends suspense, science fiction, and the legacy of Astro Boy, making it a highly anticipated addition to the Netflix lineup.
HIDIVE Adds The Vexations of a Shut-In Vampire Princess to Fall 2023 Simulcast Lineup
HIDIVE has announced the inclusion of the fantasy comedy TV anime series “The Vexations of a Shut-In Vampire Princess” in its Fall 2023 simulcast lineup. The anime is set to make its debut in Japan on October 7, 2023.
The anime series is directed by Tatsuma Minamikawa, known for “Fire Force Season 2.” It features Keiichirou Oochi as the series composer, Tomoyuki Shitaya as the character designer, Hiroaki Takagi as the action director, and Gou Shiina as the music composer. The animation production is handled by Project No.9.
The voice cast includes Tomori Kusunoki as Terakomari Gandesblood, Sayumi Suzushiro as Villhaze, Youko Hikasa as Karen Helvetius, Manaka Iwami as Sakuna Memoir, Fairouz Ai as Neria Cunningham, and Miyuri Shimabukuro as Amatsu Karla. Additionally, Sora Amamiya, Reina Ueda, and Saku Mizuno are also part of the cast.
“The Vexations of a Shut-In Vampire Princess” is based on a light novel series penned by Kotei Kobayashi and illustrated by Riichu. Yen Press publishes the light novels in English. The anime’s synopsis, according to HIDIVE, revolves around Terakomari Gandesblood, a vampire shut-in who unexpectedly finds herself appointed as a Commander in the Mulnite Imperial Army. Her unit is made up of belligerent individuals who rebel against superiors at the slightest sign of weakness. Despite her prestigious vampire lineage, Komari is unique in her refusal to drink blood, resulting in her appearing mediocre in various aspects. With the odds stacked against her, she embarks on a journey with her loyal maid, Vill, in a quest for success beyond her reclusive life.
This anime is set to be an exciting addition to the Fall 2023 lineup, promising humor and fantasy elements, making it one to watch out for.
Phoenix: Eden17 Original Series Soundtrack Releases on September 15
Milan Records has revealed that the original series soundtrack for Phoenix: Eden17 will hit music streaming platforms on September 15, 2023. This soundtrack boasts the exceptional musical compositions of Takatsugu Muramatsu, known for his work on titles like Fortune Favors Lady Nikuko and Mary and the Witch’s Flower.
Speaking about the Phoenix: Eden17 soundtrack, composer Muramatsu expressed his joy in bringing Osamu Tezuka’s beloved world to life with his music. He described the creative process as envisioning the sound immediately upon seeing the script and animation. The world that unfolded was vast and unique, challenging his deadline. The soundscape of Phoenix: Eden17 revolves around a dynamic and enigmatic orchestra, offering listeners a captivating experience.
Here’s the full track listing for the PHOENIX: EDEN17 (ORIGINAL SERIES SOUNDTRACK):
- Unexpected Error
- Sprint in danger
- Joyful Trotting
- Inorganic Creature
- New World
- Cruel Reality
- Brave Determination
- Another Planet
- Dark Spacecraft
- Growth Alone
- Enigmatic Trouble
- Dark Tunnel
- Sudden Attack
- Glorious Appearance
- Philosophy of Eden
- Destroying Future
- Devastated Illusion
- Soul of the Earth
- Peaceful Air
- Lost Future
- Beautiful Land
Phoenix: Eden17 will comprise four episodes and is set to premiere on Disney+ on September 13, 2023. Additionally, it will release in Japanese theaters as Phoenix: Reminiscence of Flower, featuring an alternate ending compared to the streaming series. Studio 4°C is the animation production company behind both the ONA series and the theatrical release.
The official synopsis describes the story as:
In the age of space exploration, Romi and her lover George flee a devastated Earth in search of a new world for just the two of them, settling on planet Eden17. However, it turns out to be a desolate planet unsuitable for human habitation. After losing George in an accident, Romi is determined to survive with her son Cain and enters a hibernation pod. When she awakes 1,300 years later, she finds that Eden is now home to a thriving city built by the descendants of Cain and the alien life-form known as Moopy. Romi lives there as a queen, but as she ages, her longing for Earth grows stronger. One day, a child of Eden named Com acknowledges Romi’s feelings and resolves to embark on a journey to take her to Earth.
DanMachi: Battle Chronicle Coming to PlayStation Consoles Next Year
PlayStation 4 and 5 versions of the free-to-play action RPG DanMachi: Battle Chronicle are scheduled for release in 2024. This announcement closely follows the game’s launch on PC and mobile devices on August 24.
DanMachi: Battle Chronicle distinguishes itself with its 3D gameplay, allowing players to control characters like Bell and Ais from the DanMachi anime in third-person combat against monsters within Dungeons. Alongside reliving the anime’s storyline, the game offers features like Magic Stone Contests, where up to eight players can engage in free-for-all battles, and the Battle Arena mode, which sets players’ parties against each other with autoplay mechanics.
The game quickly garnered one million downloads within a day of its release and subsequently topped the free app charts on both the App Store and Google Play in Japan.
DanChro recently entered into a collaboration with VTuber agency Hololive. Various Hololive members have been live-streaming the game from August 31 to September 15 JST. Upcoming streams include Oozaru Subaru on September 5 at 7 PM JST.
One Piece Releases Opening Animation For SEKAI NO OWARI’s “The Peak”
With the release of its 1074th episode, the enduring One Piece anime series introduced its 25th opening song, “The Peak” by Sekai no Owari. This marks the show’s first fresh opening theme since January 2022. A new opening animation sequence accompanies the song, available on the official One Piece YouTube channel.
The visually captivating opening sequence was storyboarded and unit-directed by Megumi Ishitani, known for her roles in One Piece episodes 957, 982, and 1015. Ishitani also directed the music video for the One Piece Film Red song “Where The Wind Blows.” Key animators for “The Peak” include Keisuke Mori, the character designer, storyboard artist, and key animator for the video. The credits also feature notable animators like Kazutaka Sugiyama from Chainsaw Man, Yoshihiko Umakoshi from My Hero Academia, and Takashi Kojima.
The opening’s other key staff include Midori Matsuda (One Piece character designer) as animation director, Teppei Hotta (One Piece co-color designer) as color designer, Tomoya Hosoka (One Piece) as compositing director, and Yoshiaki Honma (One Piece) as art director.
Jump Festa 2024 Event Reveals Stacked Lineup of Featured Titles
As the year draws to a close, the anticipation for the upcoming Jump Festa event is mounting. The official website for Jump Festa 2024 has unveiled plans for its three main stages, boasting a lineup of 37 featured titles that will take center stage with presentations, announcements, and much more.
Let’s take a look at what’s in store for the Jump Super Stage Red:
- One Piece
- My Hero Academia
- JUJUTSU KAISEN
- SPY x FAMILY
- Kaiju No. 8
- Chainsaw Man
- New Prince of Tennis
- Blue Exorcist
- Rurouni Kenshin
Jump Super Stage Blue will feature:
- Mission: Yozakura Family
- Undead Unluck
- Blue Box
- The Elusive Samurai
- Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba
- Dr. STONE
- MASHLE: MAGIC AND MUSCLES
- Chained Soldier
- ‘Tis Time for “Torture,” Princess
- Hokkaido Gals Are Super Adorable!
- Ron Kamonohashi: Deranged Detective
- Hell’s Paradise
- World Trigger
And here’s what’s coming to the Jump Studio stage:
- Me & Roboco
- SAKAMOTO DAYS
- Witch Watch
- Boukyaku Battery
- 2.5 Dimensional Seduction
- Magilumiere Magical Girls Inc.
- Red Cat Ramen
- Oshi no Ko
- Moriarty the Patriot
- Dark Gathering
Stay tuned for the specific schedules for each stage, which will be announced at a later date, along with more event details. Jump Festa 2024 is set to take place at Tokyo’s Makuhari Messe convention center from December 16-17, 2023.
Pro Mahjong Player, Former Nogizaka46 Member Kana Nakata to Perform Pon no Michi OP
Kana Nakata, a professional mahjong player and former Nogizaka46 group member, is set to lend her talents to the opening theme song of the mahjong anime “Pon no Michi.”
This opening track, titled “Pon Popopon,” marks Nakata’s first single since departing from Nogizaka46. Given her mahjong-themed café in Tokyo’s Minato Ward and her involvement in the Professional Mahjong League, it’s a fitting choice.
“Pon no Michi,” an original anime featuring designs by Negi Haruba, was first announced in May 2023. It’s scheduled for a January 2024 premiere and boasts Tatsuma Minamikawa as director and screenwriter, Kenji Ota as the character designer, and Emi Kadano as the color designer, among other talented staff members. The series is produced by OLM.
The main cast includes Kaori Maeda as Nashiko Jippensha, Iori Saeki as Pai Kawahigashi, Shion Wakayama as Izumi Tokutomi, and Yui Kondou as Riche Hayashi.
Miyazaki’s The Boy and the Heron Anime Film Rises to 88th Highest-Grossing in Japan
Just last week, Hayao Miyazaki’s anime film “The Boy and the Heron” made its entry into Japan’s top 100 highest-grossing films. Initially in 93rd place, it has since climbed to 88th, just below the 2008 film “Boys Over Flowers Final.”
As of September 3, “The Boy and the Heron” has amassed a total of 7.74 billion yen (approximately US$54.54 million) in revenue, with over 5.17 million tickets sold. GKIDS has plans for a North American theatrical release later this year, and it will open the Toronto International Film Festival on September 7.
The movie is based on Genzaburō Yoshino’s book “How Do You Live?” Algonquin Young Readers has published it in English, describing it as follows:
“The first English translation of the classic Japanese novel that has sold over two million copies, now featured in the film The Boy and the Heron from anime master Hayao Miyazaki (Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, Howl’s Moving Castle), with an introduction by Neil Gaiman.
First published in 1937, Genzaburō Yoshino’s How Do You Live? has long been acknowledged in Japan as a crossover classic for young readers. The novel is narrated in two voices. The first belongs to Copper, fifteen, who after the death of his father must confront inevitable and enormous change, including his own betrayal of his best friend. In between episodes of Copper’s emerging story, his uncle writes to him in a journal, sharing knowledge and offering advice on life’s big questions as Copper begins to encounter them. Over the course of the story, Copper, like his namesake Copernicus, looks to the stars, and uses his discoveries about the heavens, earth, and human nature to answer the question of how he will live.
This first-ever English-language translation of a Japanese classic about finding one’s place in a world both infinitely large and unimaginably small is perfect for readers of philosophical fiction like The Alchemist and The Little Prince, as well as Miyazaki fans eager to understand his mysterious new film and its many influences.”
Gintama Anime Thorny Arc Episodes Head to Theaters in Japan
The expansive Gintama 20th Anniversary Project spans from 2023 to 2026, celebrating Hideaki Sorachi’s manga serialization and the TV anime’s 20th anniversary. To commemorate this milestone, re-edited versions of the anime’s Thorny arc (also known as the Baragaki Arc) episodes will grace Japanese theaters in November, with additional footage.
This limited three-week engagement commences on November 10, 2023. Attendees will receive a bonus item and have the opportunity to purchase merchandise featuring a new illustration. Check out the main visual of Toshiro Hijikata, a pivotal figure in this arc.
Gintama’s Thorny Arc adapts chapters 365-370 of the manga and episodes 244-247 of the anime series. Crunchyroll provides streaming access to the Gintama anime, which is set in a world where aliens have invaded Edo Period Japan, ushering in skyscrapers, trains, and motorbikes, replacing the simple life of Earth’s inhabitants. Amid this upheaval, Gintoki Sakata, known as Yorozuya Gin-san, retains the spirit of a samurai, ready to face any challenge with his companions.
Crunchyroll to Premiere A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special, Dr. Stone At NYCC
Crunchyroll announced it will screen the initial three episodes of “A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special” and the first two episodes of “Dr. Stone: New World’s” second cour at New York Comic Con.
The “Dr. Stone” premiere is scheduled for October 12 (2:45 PM ET) at the Javits Center’s Main Stage. “A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special” will be screened on October 14 (6 PM ET) in Room 409. Aaron Dismuke, Senku’s English voice actor, will introduce the “Dr. Stone” screening.
Crunchyroll’s NYCC lineup includes an English dub screening event for “My Hero Academia” on October 13 (5 PM ET at Empire Stage) and a “One Piece” panel on October 14 (6:30 PM ET at Main Stage), featuring an English dub episode screening and a Q&A with the English voices behind “One Piece’s” iconic villains. An industry panel on October 12 (2:45 PM ET, Room 405) will provide updates on Crunchyroll-licensed shows.
“Dr. Stone: New World” is the third season of the anime adaptation of the science fiction manga by Riichirou Inagaki and Boichi. The first cour premiered in April with 11 episodes, while the second cour will begin airing in Japan on October 12 JST.
Meanwhile, “A Returner’s Magic Should Be Special” is based on a Korean fantasy webcomic by Usonan and Wookjakga, involving a mage who gets a second chance to save the world after time-traveling to the past. The anime currently has an October release window.
Goblin Slayer Season 2 Reveals New Visual, Premiere Date
Prepare yourselves for the return of the Goblin Slayer as a second visual for the highly-anticipated anime sequel, ‘Goblin Slayer II,’ has been unveiled. Mark your calendars, anime enthusiasts, as the sequel is scheduled to make its debut in Japan on October 6th (or effectively October 7th at 1:05 AM JST), promising a thrilling continuation of the Goblin Slayer saga.
‘Goblin Slayer’ finds its origins in the captivating light novels penned by Kumo Kagyu and brought to life through the vivid illustrations of Noboru Kannatsuki. Published under SB Creative’s GA Bunko label, these novels have intrigued readers with their gripping narrative. Yen Press succinctly encapsulates the essence of the series, introducing us to a world where a young priestess embarks on her first adventure, only to find her party in peril. It is the enigmatic Goblin Slayer who emerges as their savior, a man dedicated to eradicating goblins by any means necessary. As rumors of his exploits spread, the stage is set for unpredictable encounters and formidable challenges.
Distinguished by its fresh direction, ‘Goblin Slayer II’ sees Misato Takada (known for ‘Saiyuki Reload Zeroin’) at the helm, with character design by Hiromi Katou (‘ID-0’) and animation production entrusted to LIDENFILMS. While the first season’s director, Takaharu Ozaki, returns as chief director, other key talents such as series composer and scriptwriter Hideyuki Kurata, as well as music composer Kenichirou Suehiro, are also reprising their pivotal roles. The sequel maintains its stellar cast, featuring Yuuichirou Umehara as Goblin Slayer, Yui Ogura as Priestess, Yuka Iguchi as Cow Girl, Maaya Uchida as Guild Girl, Nao Touyama as High Elf Archer, Yuuichi Nakamura as Dwarf Shaman, and Tomokazu Sugita as Lizard Priest. Prepare for another exhilarating journey into the dark, goblin-infested realms of this unforgettable series!
This week’s Anime News has given us a glimpse into the dynamic and ever-evolving world of anime and manga. While legal challenges remind us of the complexities of online content creation, Jump Festa 2024 reminds us of the boundless excitement and creativity that continues to define this beloved industry. Stay tuned for more updates and stories from the world of anime in the weeks to come.