- Crown Plaza
- Comfort Inn
- The Courtyard by Marriot Chicago O' Here
- Chicago O' Here
New hotel room blocks have been added for this year's Anime Central. The hotels that were added to the hotel block list are:
These hotels will be added to the hotel list on Anime Central's hotel page. Anime Central will take place in Rosemount, IL at the Hyatt Regency O’Hare and the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center. The convention will take place on May 19th-21st.
Sakura Con has been busy as the date gets closer for the convention in Seattle. Sakura Con has open up submissions for panels at the time of this post. If you want to host a panel at this year's Sakura Con, you have until February 14th. For more details regarding the panel process you can click on the link below.
Sakura con Panel Submission
Sakura Con also has announced that Shiki Douji will be attending this
year's convention as a special guests. Shiki is a character designer and illustrator known best for her work in Full Metal Panic. Other work you might of seen her work in are:
Sakura Con is being held at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle, Washington. The convention will be on April 14-16th.
With only 8 days away from the looming date of hotels being opened to the public to register for this year's Fanime anime convention, information regarding what hotels will be up for grabs are now live on fanime's site. All hotels that are listed on the site, are on a anime convention discount then the normal prices for a hotel in downtown San Jose. The hotels that are listed on Fanime's site are as follows:
Prices will range anywhere from 70$ to 180$ a night pending on which hotel you plan to choose from. Hotel registration will go live on Jan. 18th, and will be open to attendees who pre-orderd thier badge for this year's Fanime. Fanime will be taking place this year on May 26-29th in San Jose at the convention center in down town San Jose.
In an early leak on twitter, the twitchcon website has confirmed that this year's TwitchCon will be in Long Beach, California on October 20-22nd. In previous year's TwitchCon has been moving from location to location for the past 2 years. In the first year of TwitchCon, the convention started in San Fransico, California. Last year's TwitchCon was held in San Diego, California.
TwitchCon is a convention that celebrates the twitch platform with panels, special guests, cosplay contests, and much more. Many streamers attend the event to network, and meet their audience as well as other fellow streamers at the event. We covered TwitchCon's first convention, and you can watch our coverage of TwitchCon on our youtube channel.
Tara Strong the voice of Twlight Sparkle, will make her return to this year's Babscon! Tara Strong is well known voice actor who not only voice Twlight Sparkle from My Little Pony, but many other roles in various cartoon shows, and video games. Some of her other characters she voiced in are:
Babscon will be taking place this year at Burlingame, CA on April 14th-16th. For more infomation about Babscon, you can check them out on thier website.
Its rare to see the support of the city for a convention of any kind, but it has been done before. Fanime is supported by San Jose, San Diego is a huge supporter of San Diego Comic Con every year, and now added to the list is A-Kon. A-Kon is partnering with the City of Fort Worth for this year's convention. As often with most cosplayers, and photographers locations for photoshoot is always the challenge at conventions. With Fort Worth opening their location to A-Kon to use, Fort Worth offers more than 250,000 square feet of exhibit space, nearly 60,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, an impressive 28,160 square-foot ballroom, a 13,500 person events arena, and a 55,000 square foot events plaza that connects to the Fort Worth Water Garden.
Also, A-Kon is planning to host multiple other programs in the surrounding area of the convention by expanding its programing at the other hotels for this year's A-Kon convention. The hotels that are being hosted for A-Kon will be separated by two categories. Hotels that will have panels, and other late night activity will be named Active hotels. While other hotels that is supported by A-Kon will provide quiet hours from 12am to 8am for guests, families and fans who need to catch a good night's sleep. A-Kon takes place in Dallas Fort Worth, Texas. A-Kon convention will take place this year on June 8th-11th.
As we roll into 2017, and the start of convention season yet again; Anime Central has announced a new musical guest for this year's convention. A New World is coming to ACEN, to peform music from Final Fantasy. The orchestra will be conducted by Eric Roth.
Eric Roth is known for an original and expressive musical personality, recognized internationally as an orchestrator/arranger, conductor, composer, and producer. Eric is a primary orchestrator and arranger for Distant Worlds: music from FINAL FANTASY, the internationally acclaimed live orchestra concert production and recording artist, and A New World: intimate music from FINAL FANTASY, the chamber ensemble concert production. His orchestrations and arrangements have been performed by the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Houston Symphony Orchestra, and others.
Some of the music that will be played at ACEN will be musical pieces that were composed by Nobuo Uematsu, Masashi Hamauzu, Naoshi Mizuta, and Hitoshi Sakimoto from throughout the thirty year history of FINAL FANTASY.
Anime Centeral will be taking this year in Rosemout, IL on May 19th-21st.
The bay area brony convention, Babscon, welcomes back the voice of Big Macintosh from the My Little Pony. Other works that Peter New was also involved are:
Peter New is no stranger to Babscon, as he had his prevous fun at the convention in a way no one expected...
Babscon will return to San Fransico, at the Hyatt Agency on April 14-16th.
It's a new year, which mean new news annoucements for this year's convention season! We are going to start off with the annoucement from Fanime. Voice Actress Lauren Landa is coming to this year's fanime. She has voiced a number of characters from video games, and anime. Some of her roles you may know her as are:
Fanime 2017 will take place during memorial weekend from May 26-29th.
Wizard World is a comic book convention that travels from city to city bringing the likes of Stan Lee, Carre Fisher, and many other stars. Since the start of the Wizard World conventions, the question of how exactly can Wizard World finance these conventions does beg the question. Recently this information has been released. Newsarama is reporting that Wizard World working captial of $2,543,922 but with an accumulated deficit of $15,263,411. To help mitigate this problem, the company's newly-hired President/CEO John D. Matta and the board are beginning to seek outside funding through loans, equity investments, and cutting some operating costs.
In order to fund operations past that date is dependent on management’s plans, which include the raising of capital through debt and/or equity markets with some additional funding from other traditional financing sources, including term notes, or the significant reduction of operating expenses until such time that funds provided by operations are sufficient to fund working capital requirements," reads Wizard World's 10-Q form. "There is no assurance that the Company’s projections and estimates are accurate. The Company is actively managing and controlling the Company’s cash outflows to mitigate these risks."
Also, Wizard World is in a lawsuit with with former Chief Marketing Officer Stephen Shamus who is seeking $400,000 in unpaid salary and bonuses, $125,000 severance pay, stock options on 500,000 shares in the company, as well as an unspecified amount of commissions and interest.
Reading this news story, this does not bode well for the Wizard World Convention circut. I did question how exactly Wizard World was able to contunie running Wizard World. We see how exactly this will bode for the future of Wizard World, but its not looking good right now.
Last year Anime Expo debuted to their attendees Anisong World Matsuri, which was a concert event celebrating anime music. During this event, eight bands were performing at Anime Expo last year including:
This event was such a huge success, and was well received from attendees that Anime Expo has announced Anisong World Matsuri will indeed return for 2017. As far as who will be performing at next year's Anime Expo is yet to be announced. Also Prices for the tickets for the concert are also yet to be announced. This past year, fans were able to attend the concert only by purchasing tickets for the concert, and must have an Anime Expo badge. The badge had to be either a four day, and or a one day badge to attend the concert event.
I was rather surprised how Anime Expo was able to pull this event off, as well as the amount of bands to Anime Expo this past year. I only wonder how Anime Expo will be able to top this event for next year, since they are already set the bar so high for themselves. The other big question is the money this must of costs to bring the talent here, but with the recent VIP packages that Anime Expo has set up, this may help Anime Expo levitate the costs.
Anime California has been through a rough start early in it's anime convention career, today didn't help its cause. Today on Anime California's social media, has announced that this year's Anime California has been cancelled.
Good evening Everyone!
While indeed this anime convention has had a rough start, its never a good sign when it cancels all together. Anime California will try to return again in 2017, and many fans will await it's return. Running anime conventions are never easy kids.
Conventions don't tend to stay for long in San Francisco, and many hopeful were devastated when Wondercon moved to Anaheim, and never came back. Wondercon may not be coming back, but in it's place the CCI (Comic-Con International) are planning to make a new convention for San Francisco. Introducing SAM, Storytelling Across Media, comic book convention.
“Our hope is that we can return to the Bay Area if not with WonderCon than perhaps with another convention,” said David Glanzer, CCI's Director of Marketing and Public Relations. “SAM, Storytelling Across Media, is our first foray in that direction.”
While CCI is making a good effort to bring back a comic book convention, since Wondercon never came back, I feel like its been increasingly obvious that San Francisco is the place where conventions tend to move away from. If this indeed works out, then people in norcal will be happy to have a comic book convention back since the departure of Wondercon.
In a press release that was released late last night, there was question as far as who was going to be the new CEO of SPJA when Marc Perez stepped down last year. The answer is Mark Manansala. Mark was the Vice-Chairman of the SPJA under Marc Perez, and now that Marc has stepped down, Mark has given control as the new CEO. Mark has been around as long as 2009 volunteering to help Anime Expo in the Control Department of Anime Expo. Throughout the years since he was elected to the board in 2012, he served two consecutive terms until October 16th, 2016, when he resigned from the Board to join the SPJA. Mark's other track record before taking up this position outisde of the convention scene was, he has had a long and successful track record of overseeing commercial banking at US Bank and Wells Fargo, where he played an integral part in growing companies in a variety of industries.
“The Board is delighted to welcome Mark as the new CEO of SPJA,” said John Roadarmel, Chairman of the Board, “we look forward to Ray and Mark taking SPJA into the future, with the rest of SPJA’s outstanding directors and staff.”
The other big news to come out of this announcement is that Ray Chiang is now the Chief Operating Officer. Ray is already familiar with this role as he served as interim Chief Executive Officer since April 4, 2016, and only now taking full control of the position. With questions regarding the ethics of the Anime Expo staff, and deals the SPJA makes for their conventions, its going to be interesting how the leadership changes will affect the southern California conventions.
Source: Press Release
In a recent story covered by teleread.org, a bill was passed called, " Collectibles: sale of autographed memorabilia". This bill was introduced to prevent anyone for trying to do forging mills, and reap the benefits of selling license material under a copied autograph. While the intent is good, the details of the bill is rather vague in regards to what materials are autographed, and sold. Link the bill is below if you wish to read the entire bill.
How this bill effects cosplayers, and artist alike in California, is that every autographed item that is sold for 5$ or more must be have a certificate of authentication, (COA), for each sold autographed item. The most important detail in the bill is specifically article 7, and 8.
(7) Indicate whether the item was autographed in the presence of the dealer and specify the date and location of, and the name of a witness to, the autograph signing.
Basically, if your item was sold through another company, that company must include their business location, and name. On top of that, this also means that if the item is autographed, the artist that is selling the sold item must keep a record of the date, location, and have someone with you as a witness of the time of the autograph. The real question now for all of California conventions is, will this be incorporated into artist alley rules alongside getting a sellers permit to sell at conventions. We have reached out to several conventions for their comments on this bill, and how it would affect their artist alley procedure. Also we have reached out to Democratic California Representative Jim Frazer for comment on this bill, as he was one of the Representative that voted for the bill.
This bill won't be enforce in California until the 1st of January of next year. With the way this bill is set up right now, this will affect all artists, and cosplayers who sell any form of artwork that is autographed. There are several resources online, to have any artwork that has been autographed that offer COA for free, and a link will be provided below to begin the process. We will update this story as this continues on.
Merced is about to become a new geek destination in the Central Valley as the city is hosting its first ever comic con on September 17th. Colossus Con Merced will take place at the Merced County Fairgrounds and will feature celebrity guests, cosplayers, artists, vendors and a classic 1980’s arcade. Celebration of all things pop culture from comic books to movies to fantasy and sci-fi aimed to bring the community together, boost Merced’s image and give people an opportunity to get a comic con experience without breaking the bank and travelling to a bigger city.
Colossus Con celebrity guest lineup includes actor Gil Gerard best known for portraying Captain Buck Rogers on the popular TV series “Buck Rogers in the 25th Century”. Gil will be joined by his co-star Felix Silla who played the robot Twiki and also known for his roles in “Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi” and “Battlestar Galactica”.
Attendees will also be able to shop from various exhibitors and creators, meet local cosplayers and fan clubs, learn lightsaber fighting, and enjoy entertainment and treats from the anime-themed Maid Manor Cafe. Colossus Con also features a retro 1980’s arcade with several classic coin-op games like Ms. Pacman, Buck Rogers – Planet of Zoom, and Donkey Kong. Doors open 10 am, and more information about tickets you can check out www.colossuscon.com.
Over the weekend Otakon was held in Baltimore, Maryland for its 12 annual anime convention. Anime News Network reported that Viz Media announced the release of Ranma 1/2 Films, and OVA are coming the Blue-Ray Disc set in 2017. The films, and OVA's that are being released for 2017 are:
Viz Media have already released prior Ranma 1/2 content in March of 2014, and May of this year. Details regarding the release date is not present at this time.
Viz Media Story
While Anime LA is still a good 5 months away, Anime LA opened up hotel housing for upcoming convention last week. Since the opening for hotel reservations, there was an error with the Convention Center Housing Bureau. Hotel rooms are being overbooked, and hotel reservations are being made to hotel rooms that don't exist. A spokesperson from the Anime LA staff has made a comment on the situation, and informs everyone that the Anime LA staff is looking to address this issue.
Hotel Reservation Issues –
Voice actress Lisa Ortiz, known for voicing the elf Deedlit in "Record of Lodoss War," Lina Inverse in "Slayers" and Amy Rose in "Sonic the Hedgehog," will be a guest at Otakon 2016.
In addition to her roles in "Record of Lodoss War," "Slayers" and "Sonic the Hedgehog," she has gone on to record dozens of anime, series, audiobooks, video games, and films, both as a voice actress and as a producer, director and adapter. She is currently the director of "Pokemon XY" and has worked on the show in various capacities over the years since "Indigo League," from Misty’s older sister Daisy, to Sabrina, to Flannery, to Oshawatt, to Fletchling and present-day gym leader Korrina. She can currently be heard as Noembelu in "Street Fighter V."
Ortiz is president of Noise of O Productions, and currently resides in NYC with her fabulous feline Fitz. Her website is: LisaOrtiz.com
Otakon 2016 will be held August 12-14 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore, MD.
Small Press Expo has announced several guests for this year's convention to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of Fantagraphics. The current special guests to attend this year's SPX will be:
Joe Sacco is a cartoonist and journalist. He is best known for his comics journalism, in particular in the books Palestine (1996) and Footnotes in Gaza (2009), on Israeli–Palestinian relations; and Safe Area Goražde (2000) and The Fixer (2003) on the Bosnian War.
Trina Robbins is an American cartoonist. She was an early and influential participant in the underground comix movement, and one of the few female artists in the fledgling underground comix movement. Both as a cartoonist and historian, Robbins has long been involved in creating outlets for and promoting female comics artists.
Daniel Gillespie Clowes is an American cartoonist, illustrator, and screenwriter. Most of Clowes's work first appeared in Eightball, a solo anthology comic book series. An Eightball issue typically contained several short pieces and a chapter of a longer narrative that was later collected and published as a graphic novel, such as Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron (1993), Ghost World (1997), and David Boring (2000). Clowes’s illustrations have appeared in The New Yorker, Newsweek, Vogue, The Village Voice, and elsewhere. With filmmaker Terry Zwigoff, Clowes adapted Ghost World into a 2001 film and another Eightball story into the 2006 film, Art School Confidential. Clowes’s comics, graphic novels, and films have received numerous awards, including a Pen Award for Outstanding Work in Graphic Literature, over a dozen Harvey and Eisner Awards, and an Academy Award nomination.
Carol Tyler is an American painter, educator, comedian, and eleven-time Eisner Award-nominated cartoonist known for her autobiographical stories.
James William Woodring is an American cartoonist, fine artist, writer and toy designer. He is best known for the dream-based comics he published in his magazine Jim, and as the creator of the anthropomorphic cartoon character Frank, who has appeared in a number of short comics and graphic novels.
Ed Piskor is an alternative comics artist operating out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is a former student of The Kubert School and is best known for his artistic collaborations with underground comics pioneers Harvey Pekar of American Splendor fame, and Jay Lynch who illustrates Garbage Pail Kids. He has a cult following amongst minicomic fans with his series Deviant Funnies and Isolation Chamber.
In the coming months, there will be more special guests to be appear at this year's SPX. Alongside the special guests that was announced today, several events at this year's SPX was also announced including:
Alongside these announcements, the 2016 Ignatz nominees will also be announced at this year's Small Press Expo. The Ignatz Award is a festival prize held every year at SPX recognizing outstanding achievement in comics and cartooning, with the winners chosen by attendees at the show.
SPX 2016 takes place on September 17-18, in Bethesda, Maryland.
Voice actor Michael Liscio, who has lent his voice to characters on the show "Pokémon," has been added to the guest roster for Otakon 2016, according to Otakorp Inc.
Liscio wears many hats as a voice-over artist, actor of stage and screen, singer/songwriter, and writer. He is best known for his work on "Pokémon" (Clemont and Inkay) and "YuGiOh: Arc V" (Yuya, Yuto, Yugo, and Yuri) and can also be seen eight times a week in "Avenue Q."
For more information on Liscio’s current projects, check out his website: MichaelLiscio-Jr.com. Otakon 2016 will be held August 12-14 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore, MD.
Voice actress Sarah Natochenny, best known as the voice of "Pokémon's" Ash Ketchum for over a decade, will be a guest at Otakon 2016, according to Otakorp Inc.
In addition to voicing Ash Ketchum, Natochenny has done commercials and promos for Nickelodeon, McDonalds, Wendy's, Fisher Price and Scope, which was awarded a Lion at the Cannes Film Festival. Her other animated series include "Super 4" (Twinkle), "Robin Hood" (Marian), "Peter Pan" (Tinkerbell), "Yoko" (Vik) and "World of Winx." Her feature films include "Axel: The Biggest Little Hero" (Boca) and "Sheep & Wolves" (Xavi).
As for video games, her work can be heard in "Batman: The Dark Knight," "Thor," "Gangstar: Vegas," "My Littlest Pet Shop," "Dungeon Hunter 4," "Bullet Witch," "Dragon Hunter," "GTA V," and more.
Natochenny has also been working as a film editor for the last six years. She studied acting at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute and improv at the Upright Citizens Brigade and Magnet Theaters. Otakon 2016 will be held August 12-14 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore, MD
This past weekend we received news that Aniplex will be hosting their own anime convention this year. The convention, Akibafest, will take place in Los Angeles, at the Little Tokyo plaza on October 15th-16th. Aniplex's goal with Akibafest is not only to host their own anime convention, but bring the experience of what it feels like to attend Akihabara in Japan.
A lot of events offer different facets of Japanese culture, but there hasn’t been an event that really brings it all together. Our goal for AkibaFest is to fill this void in as authentic manner as possible. We’re going to transform Little Tokyo into the closest thing to ‘Akiba’ as possible. If we can’t bring you to Akihabara, we’re going to bring Akihabara to you. -John Inada, Aniplex of America’s Director of Business Development
AkibaFest is a cooperative venture between Aniplex of America, other notable anime and video game publishers, technology partners, and the Little Tokyo business community. Fans will be able to enjoy exclusive film screenings, expert panels and workshops, playable video game demos, technology demos, cosplay contests, themed cafés, exclusive merchandise offers, Japanese food and beverages, and much more. The website is now live for people to sign up to Akiafest's newsletter to be notified of updates for the upcoming convention, and other information including prices for the tickets will be in the near future.
It is interesting to see Aniplex host their own anime convention. While many anime companies have participated in many big anime conventions, this may be the first time I seen an anime company actually host their very own. I am very curious to see how this will go for Aniplex, and if this starts out very well, we may see other big anime companies do the same in the future.
Baltimore, MD (June 27, 2016) – Voice actress Alyson Leigh Rosenfeld, known for her roles on "Pokémon" and "Yu-Gi-Oh!," among others, will be a guest at Otakon 2016, according to Otakorp Inc.
Rosenfeld portrays Bonnie and Nurse Joy on "Pokémon"; Rio Kastle on "Yu-Gi-Oh!"; Zexal, Princess Leonora and Baba Cara on "Super 4"; Kahori Harukawa in the "Psychic School Wars" anime feature; and Ally and Riley on "Yu-Gi-Oh! Arc V!" She has provided voices for numerous cartoons, video games, toys and commercials. She can also be seen performing theatre in New York City (most recently in the critically-acclaimed "Seussical"), and on-screen in her new web series, "Crumbly Kitchen" (http://www.crumblykitchen.com).
For more info, check out her website (http://www.alysonleighrosenfeld.com) and follow her on Twitter (@AlysonRosenfeld) or on Instagram (@alysonleighrosenfeld).
Otakon 2016 will be held August 12-14 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore, MD. ABOUT OTAKON AND OTAKORP, INC.: Now entering its twenty-third year, Otakon is an annual celebration of Japanese and East Asian popular culture, and also one of the largest gatherings of fans in the United States. Otakon celebrates popular culture as a gateway to deeper understanding of Asian culture, and has grown along with the enthusiasm for anime, manga, video games, and music from the Far East. Since 1999, Otakon has been held in Baltimore, Maryland; currently, Otakon is one of Baltimore's few large, city-wide events, drawing over 34,000 people for three days each year (for a paid attendance of over 100,000 turnstile attendees). Otakon is a membership based convention sponsored by Otakorp, Inc., a Pennsylvania-based, 501(c)3 educational non-profit whose mission is to promote the appreciation of Asian culture, primarily through its media and entertainment. Otakorp, Inc. is directed by an all-volunteer, unpaid staff – we are run by fans, for fans.
For more information about Otakorp, Inc., see http://www.otakon.com/otakorp/index.asp
For more information and the latest news on Otakon 2015, see http://www.otakon.com/
Baltimore, MD (June 28, 2016) – Voice actress and actress Haven Paschall has been added to the guest roster for Otakon 2016, according to Otakorp Inc.
Paschall is best known for her roles as Serena, Jessie’s Pumpkaboo and Gourgeist, Miette’s Slurpuff, Sawyer’s Slurpuff, Swirlix, Concordia, Ellie and Florence in "Pokémon." Haven is also the voice of Bloom and Kiko in "Winx Club" season 7 and "World of Winx."
Otakon 2016 will be held August 12-14 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Baltimore, MD.
ABOUT OTAKON AND OTAKORP, INC.: Now entering its twenty-third year, Otakon is an annual celebration of Japanese and East Asian popular culture, and also one of the largest gatherings of fans in the United States. Otakon celebrates popular culture as a gateway to deeper understanding of Asian culture, and has grown along with the enthusiasm for anime, manga, video games, and music from the Far East. Since 1999, Otakon has been held in Baltimore, Maryland; currently, Otakon is one of Baltimore's few large, city-wide events, drawing over 34,000 people for three days each year (for a paid attendance of over 100,000 turnstile attendees). Otakon is a membership based convention sponsored by Otakorp, Inc., a Pennsylvania-based, 501(c)3 educational non-profit whose mission is to promote the appreciation of Asian culture, primarily through its media and entertainment. Otakorp, Inc. is directed by an all-volunteer, unpaid staff – we are run by fans, for fans.
For more information about Otakorp, Inc., see http://www.otakon.com/otakorp/index.asp
For more information and the latest news on Otakon 2015, see http://www.otakon.com/