Sony Pictures Acquires Live-Action Robotech Film Rights

Variety is reporting that Sony Pictures has acquired the live-action film rights to the Robotech property, and “views the project as a potential film franchise.”

The Deadline website reported in February 2015 that the “Hollywood Gang” producers Gianni Nunnari and Mark Canton had hired Michael Gordon to write the script. Variety reports that Sony Pictures Entertainment Group President Doug Belgrad, Columbia Pictures Production Chief Michael De Luca, and Sony Pictures Vice President of Creative Production Matthew Milam will oversee the project. The executive producers include Harmony Gold founder Frank Agrama, Gordon, and Jehan Agrama.

Robotech was Harmony Gold’s edited and rewritten 1985 adaptation of three separate anime science-fiction series: The Super Dimension Fortress Macross, The Super Dimension Cavalry Southern Cross, and Genesis Climber Mospeada. The producers have yet to announce which, if any, of the three anime that the proposed live-action project will most follow, or how it will deal with the copyright dispute between Harmony Gold’s partner Tatsunoko Production and the creators of The Super Dimension Macross, which was the most popular of the three anime.

The proposed live-action film was first announced in 2007 with actor Toby Maguire involved at Warner Brothers. In 2008, Lawrence Kasdan was attached to the project as scriptwriter, with Charles Roven and Akive Goldsman joining as producers. In 2009, British TV writer Tom Rob Smith was slated to write the film’s story. In the same year, Roven backed out of the project for undisclosed reasons. In 2013, Warner Bros. was in talks to hire director Nic Mathieu to helm the film.

Source: ANN

Seven Seas Entertainment Licenses A Certain Scientific Accelerator

Seven Seas Entertainment has announced that the company has the manga A Certain Scientific Accelerator. The first volume is scheduled for October 2015 and the second is scheduled for January 2016.

Arata Yamaji began the spinoff series about the A Certain Magical Index character Accelerator in Kadokawa’s Monthly Comic Dengeki Daioh in 2013. Kadokawa will ship the third compiled volume in Japan in April 2015.

Yen Press is publishing Kazuma Kamachi’s original A Certain Magical Index light novel series with illustrations by Kiyotaka Haimura as well as Chuya Kogino’s A Certain Magical Index manga. Seven Seas Entertainment licensed the A Certain Scientific Railgun manga. FUNimation Entertainment handles North American distribution of the anime adaptations.

Source: ANN

English Dub Cast for Nobunaga The Fool

Sentai Filmworks has announced the English dub cast for Nobunaga The Fool. The cast includes:

  • Scott Gibbs is Nobunaga Oda
  • Juliet Simmons is Joan Kaguya d’Arc
  • Mike Yager is Akechi Mitsuhide
  • Greg Ayres is Toyotomi Hideyoshi
  • David Wald is Leonardo Da Vinci
  • Luci Christian is Ichihime
  • Krystal LaPorte is Himiko
  • Luis Galindo is Nobuhide Oda
  • Gabriel Regojo is Nobukatsu Oda
  • Rob Mungel is Takeda Shingen
  • Clint Bickham is Kenshin Uesugi
  • Katelyn Barr is Chacha
  • Sara Ornelas is Hatsu
  • Brittany Djie is Gou
  • Leraldo Anzaldua is King Arthur
  • Josh Morrison is Alexander
  • Houston Hayes is Gaius Julius Caesar
  • Jonathan Gonzalez is Brutus
  • David Matranga is Cesare Borgia
  • Jay Hickman is Charlemagne
  • Allison Sumrall is Hannibal Barca
  • Carli Mosier is Niccolo Machiavelli
  • Robert Meek is Chadra Gupta
  • Mark X Laskowski is Magellan
  • Winter Wallace is Narrator

Chris Ayres is directing the dub.

Sentai Filmworks describes the story of Nobunaga The Fool as:

Long ago, in an age when the cosmos was still known as Chaos, the world was split into two planets, forming the West and East Stars. After years of war and strife, the Western Star has finally become united under a single king, the legendary Arthur. But conflict still threatens to consume all until hope arises in a vision: a vision of a champion who could save the futures of both worlds.

Setting forth on a dangerous journey, Joan d’Arc must travel from the West world to the East, seeking the man she believes can use the devices of the great Leonardo Da Vinci and become their savior. But will Nobunaga Oda be the kind of man they are expecting? Will history’s greatest heroes find themselves choosing not a liberator, but a destroyer? Or is Nobunaga’s role that of the Fool from a deck of Tarot, the wild card whose purpose is to invoke change, no matter what the cost?

Sentai will be shipping Nobunaga The Fool on Blu-ray and DVD on April 28, 2015.

Source: ANN

Case Closed: Episode 771 – “The Tense Tea Party (Part Two)”

Case Closed sees Shinichi Kudo, a high school junior mystery buff with incredible abilities with his power of observation and intuition, being given an experimental poison by a criminal organization. Instead of killing Shinichi, it shrinks him back down to his six or seven year old self.

As his new younger self, Shinichi takes on the name of Conan Edogawa, and poses as a relative of his neighbor, Dr. Agasa. As Conan, Shinichi ends up living with his childhood friend Ran Mori and her father Kogoro. Kogoro is a bumbling private investigator who used to be part of the Japanese police force. Shinichi believes that he can use Kogoro’s resources to track down the men in black who poisoned him in order to get an antidote that will return him to his normal size.

Episode 771 continues and concludes the hospital poisoning case that began in Episode 770. At the beginning, there’s a roughly three-and-a-half minute recap of the previous episode before going into the opening credits. Usually, recaps for Case Closed don’t run that long, so I had a suspicion that the episode needed to kill some time. When I reached the end of the episode, it was obvious that there just wasn’t quite enough left in this particular mystery to last for the entirety of Episode 771. It’s no wonder the recap ran for so long.

While Conan pieces everything together to solve the case, he thinks that Bourbon has figured it out as well. As Kogoro, Meguire, and Bourbon are talking with the suspects, Conan demonstrates a trick and throws clues out there in order to encourage Bourbon to explain and solve the case. It was actually kind of nice to see Conan find a way to have someone else provide the evidence and solve the crime outside of relying on his dart watch and voice changing bowtie.

While I had guessed that the item mentioned as the “Conan’s Hint” at the end of Episode 770 was involved with how Reina was poisoned, I hadn’t correctly guessed how it was used to commit the crime. I have to say that I thought the explanation from the episode was much better than what I had come up with. I had also correctly guessed who the guilty party was, but I learned information for their motive that I hadn’t been privy to in Episode 770.

This poisoning story was a pretty decent murder mystery for the Case Closed franchise. I didn’t have that “been there, done that” feeling that one would expect to have after seeing so many murder mysteries played out in what I’ve seen of Case Closed.

Manga Review: “07-Ghost” Volume 15

Originally written for WatchPlayRead.com

07-Ghost Volume 15 focuses on Teito Klein, a former slave with amnesia who learns that he was once the prince of the Raggs Empire, a kingdom that was destroyed by the Barsburg Empire. He also harbors the Eye of Mikael, an artifact that’s said to bring either the world’s salvation or destruction. Teito had been at the Barsburg Empire’s military academy because he has an ability to use a rare supernatural power called Zaiphon. Teito finds himself on the run when he learns the truth about his past, and is attacked by Chief of Staff Ayanami. Teito is rescued by three bishops from the 7th District who provide him with sanctuary.

07-Ghost Volume 15

Written by: Yuki Amemiya and Yukino Ichihara
Publisher: Ichijinsha
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: March 10, 2015

Volume 15 sees Princess Ouka becoming distraught when she discovers that she’s a replica and not the real princess. But Teito tells her that unlike the other replicas, she has a soul, and isn’t a fake. Teito’s words calm Ouka down and help her find some new strength. The excitement in the volume builds as an attempt is made on the life of the Emperor of Barsburg, and the scientist behind the Ouka replicas gets schooled by Ouka. I loved seeing Ouka standing up to the professor and using her power to destroy every replica in the area. While that may sound mean, the professor showed his true colors when he attempted to choke Ouka because she wouldn’t do what he commanded her to do.

We then see that the emperor wasn’t killed, and we also get an interesting backstory on how the emperor’s obsession with Teito’s mother ultimately led him to wage war on the Raggs Empire. The emperor was definitely one messed up person in his youth, thanks to the influence of someone calling himself “The Warmonger.” But with help from Ouka and Teito, the emperor is able to receive redemption for all he’s done after The Warmonger is chased off. With Ouka, I can see why she’s willing to forgive, since the emperor is her only family. But I was actually surprised as how easily Teito was able to forgive him, since it was ultimately the emperor’s fault that his father is dead and that his mother is incapacitated.

We also get to see backstory of when Teito was young, and how his mother fell into a deep sleep because she was poisoned by The Warmonger. The emperor still has the antidote, and this allows Teito to have a touching reunion with his mother after all these years. This was definitely the most emotional section of Volume 15.

Then the manga places quite an emphasis on the backstory for Ea and Landkarte, who are two of the 07-Ghosts. And through these flashbacks, it appears that the audience has been given a hint as to who “The Warmonger” is. Verloren, the evil death god, launches a plan, and both Ouka and Teito are determined to stop him. Karr also wants to get in on the action, and he gets what he hopes for when he runs into a long-lost friend right at the end of Volume 15.

07-Ghost Volume 15 is an intense read, due to all of the background information that’s provided and revealed, in addition to the buildup in the action as the story heads toward a major conflict between two of the major characters. The volume ends with a major cliffhanger that will make readers want to read the next volume to find out what’s going to happen.

From the way the story in Volume 15 builds, it’s rather blatant that the series is quickly heading toward its climax. A lot of information was revealed in this volume, and everything that’s revealed builds up to the showdown that begins right at the end of it.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this volume. Readers who have followed this series from the very beginning should be satisfied with the progression of the story and with the answers and backstories that are provided in 07-Ghost Volume 15. When it comes to the 07-Ghost series as a whole, I’d have to say that I think it would appeal to manga readers who enjoy compelling stories with supernatural elements.

The reviewer was provided a review copy by VIZ Media

Manga Review: “Arata: The Legend” Volume 21

Originally written for WatchPlayRead.com

Arata: The Legend Volume 21 tells the story of two boys named Arata-one from modern day Japan, the other from a fantasy world called Amawakuni. One day, the two boys switch places and are mistaken for the other. The Arata from modern day Japan discovers that his counterpart from Amawakuni has been framed for murder, and that he has the ability to wield a special sword called a Hayagami that his counterpart was unable to use.

Arata: The Legend Volume 21

Written by: Yuu Watase
Publisher: Shogakukan
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: March 10, 2015

Volume 21 is set in Amawakuni, and Arata and his traveling companions arrive at an island. Suddenly, everyone except Arata begins to act differently for no apparent reason. This leads to Kannagi and Yataka fighting each other, while Kotoha, Mikusa, and Nasake become lethargic. Arata believes that Ikisu, the member of the Six Sho with the kamui of smell, is somehow behind it. But Arata is surprised to discover that Kanate, a boy who once traveled with him, has released scents that control emotions.

This section of Volume 21 places a strong focus on Arata and Kanate, and on Kanate’s jealousy of the other boy. Kanate wants to fight with Arata, but he doesn’t want to fight against someone who he thinks of as a friend. Kanate is being controlled by Ikisu, but the jealousy that Kanate feels is quite real. Arata tries so hard to reason with Kanate, but the art shows Arata looking almost desperate. I felt so bad for Arata as I read this scene, because it reminded me so much of what he was like back when he was bullied in modern day Japan.

It appears that Arata’s friendship with Kanate is heading in the same direction as with Suguru, a boy who pretended to be his friend back in modern day Japan. But just as it seems Ikisu’s “inferiority complex” scent will triumph over Arata, he finds the strength to get a good hit in on Kanate. I was glad to see that Arata didn’t give up, because he had made such strides in character development from the kid who was being bullied at his high school in modern day Japan. I would have hated to see all that development be for nothing.

Even though Kanate and Arata make up, Kanate decides to go on his own to settle a score with Ikisu. Arata desperately tries to chase after Kanate to stop him, but Ikisu finds Kanate first and begins beating him up. Just as it seems like Kanate is going to lose, Arata’s rival Kadowaki appears and defends the other boy from Ikisu’s attacks. Kadowaki’s arrival surprised me, because I didn’t expect to see him pop up like this.

After being saved, Kanate willingly submits himself to Kadowaki. Arata arrives just as this happens and doesn’t realize Kanata did this act willingly. Kadowaki decides to egg Arata on by claiming that he forced Kanate to do it. Of course, this gets a rise out of Arata, and the two boys begin fighting each other. The fight becomes so intense that Arata demonizes, and it’s up to Kotoha to try to stop him. Unfortunately, Kadowaki was the main kid bullying Arata back in modern day Japan, and he brought that attitude with him when he was transported to Amawakuni. But at least in this world, Arata has the guts to stand up to him. This is another example of how much Arata has grown as a character from the beginning of the series.

When it comes to the art in Arata: The Legend, Watase has done a great job with her character designs. Each character has a very distinct look, and this even includes the two Aratas. While they have a very similar look in their faces, they still look just different enough that the reader can distinguish between the two of them.

In Arata: The Legend Volume 21, one thing that really stood out to me was the expressions that Arata had throughout this volume. Watase did a fantastic job conveying Arata’s desperation as he tries to reason with Kanate, as well as capturing Arata’s rage when he believed that Kadowaki had forced Kanate to submit to him. As a reader, I thought I could feel Arata’s emotions just as much as I could see them on the page.

I believe that Arata: The Legend will appeal to manga readers who enjoy fantasy stories where the characters go to completely different worlds and have to learn to adjust to their new environments. And long-time readers of the series should enjoy the action and revelations that are made over the course of Arata: The Legend Volume 21.

The reviewer was provided a review copy by VIZ Media

Maaya Sakamoto and Cornelius to Perform the New Ghost in the Shell Film’s Theme Song

The official website for the Ghost in the Shell franchise has announced that Maaya Sakamoto and Cornelius will perform the main theme song for the upcoming Kokaku Kidotai Shin Gekijo-ban (Ghost in the Shell: The New Movie) film.

The song will be titled “Mada Ugoku” (It Still Moves). Cornelius will also compose and arrange the song, while former member of band Yura Yura Teikoku Shintaro Sakamoto will write the lyrics. The CD containing the song and another song titled, “Anata o Tamotsu Mono” (What Maintains You) along with one other coupling song will ship in Japan on June 17, 2015.

Sakamoto will also play the film’s protagonist Motoko Kusanagi, and Cornelius will be composing the soundtrack.

Source: ANN