Funimation’s New Show A-Go-Go Day 10 (Part 3): Evangelion 1.0 – You Are (Not) Alone

Evangelion 1.0: You Are (Not) AloneWell, this was the big big one everyone was expecting: Funimation has licensed the first Rebuild of Evangelion movie – Evangelion 1.0: You are (not) Alone.

The press release says that the movie will be released in 2009, but doesn’t say anythinga bout whether Funimatino plans any sort of US theatrical release or not.

The new Evangelion movie is perhaps the most anticipated anime property that had remained unlicensed, and some suggested that it’s licensing cost would be so much that only a traditional movie studio with a history of licensing some anime feature films, such as Sony, could pick it up.

ANN says that this title wraps up Funimation’s licensing spree, though nothing on the Funimation site suggests that they are over just yet (though a comment by a Funimation representative on ANN’s forum suggests that this might be the last announcement, and it’s hard to see how anything could top this announcement).

Update

The Funimation page with the Japanese trailer gives a release date of November 10, 2009.

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Funimation’s New Show A-Go-Go Day 10 (Part 2): Soul Eater

Soul EaterFinally! We get to the big guns!  Funimation’s second announcement of the day comes, and it’s a big one: Media Factory and BONES’ 51 episode anime series Soul Eater, which is currently airing in Japan.

Funimation says that Funimation will release the series in “four half-season sets” starting in late 2009.

Funimation changed how the globe showed up on their image, so I’m not sure if we’re done or not.  I have a feeling that we still have one more to go…

Update

Here is Funimation’s quick and dirty description of the series:

Unapologetically surreal and action-packed, Soul Eater is the tale of living weapons who team with human masters to hunt evil souls. Only after these dark forces are consumed can these partners hope to join the ranks of the famed Death Scythes.

Maka and her weapon, Soul, are among the new students at a university run by Death himself. As they learn the ways of collecting souls, this fresh class of reapers must work together to keep witches, werewolves, and zombies from unleashing evil upon the world.

Update 2

Funimation’s new video section lists Soul Eater’s release date as November 17, 2009 (I’m sure that’s provisional at this point).  It also includes a lengthy trailer giving the basic overview of the series.

Funimation’s New Show A-Go-Go Day 10 (Part 1?): Samurai Champloo

Well, this is really confounding.  Not only did people blow the Soul Eater clue, but the Evangelion clue, which begs the question…what were those clues for (or what did they mean) or are we not done with this New Show A-Go-Go thing?

In any case, Funimation (supposedly) wraps up their 10 day announcement blitz with their 7th Geneon rescue – another distribution deal, not a licensing deal – with Samurai Champloo.

But still…either those two clues need explaining to me, we’re not finished, or Funimation ran into a problem and had to pull back on the two big expected announcements.

Update

And we have our answer from a Funimation rep on the ANN forums:

According to my watch December 31st lasts 24 hours.

New Year’s Eve is not over.

I think that pretty much guarantees that we can expect more later today.  Don’t tell me they’re gonna wait until like, 11:59 PM to announce (and you never know, they could wait until central time too!)

Dragonball: Evolution trailer thoughts

So I checked out the leaked Dragonball: Evolution trailer which came out earlier this month (oddly, I can’t an official website for the movie yet) and these are basically my thoughts:

  • They’re banking on special effects (especially of things blowing up) and people fighting to bring in people
  • The special effects are, on average, average and some of them look pretty bad (though one might give them the benefit of a doubt since they might not be complete yet)
  • They appear to be trying to do the fighting scenes in the Chinese Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon/Matrix style – that is to say, it is obviously fake, and since they’re trying to mimic it, it looks even worse.
  • The acting sucks.  No, really, it really sucks.  And there isn’t even much of it in the trailer.
  • The actual video quality sucks (and I’m not talking about the YouTube quality.  I mean how the cinematography is done makes it look like a cheap TV show, not a theatrical movie)
  • I don’t fucking care what the character names is.  That portion of the trailer is targeted solely towards people who are already fans which, I’m sorry, isn’t enough to keep the movie from bombing.

Some of you may remember how unimpressed I was with the Speed Racer trailer and how much I doubted how it would attract people to see it, even with the flashy special effects.

Well, Dragonball is making Speed Racer look like an academy award winner movie.  While Speed Racer didn’t really attract people to the theater, it’s special effects were actually, you know, good.  And while the acting wasn’t good, it was decent.  Dragonball appears to be several levels below Speed Racer on both accounts based on this trailer.

Amazingly, Fox has spent a whopping $100 million on this movie, only $20 million less than the eye-popping Speed Racer, and the dollars per minute is actualy more than Speed Racer at the moment:  Speed Racer ran for 135 minutes, which amounts to about $889,000 a minute, while Dragonball: Evolution is currently slated to be 98 minutes – at least according to Wikipedia – which would put it at $1,020,000 a minute.

That’s nothing compared to most summer blockbusters – Pirates of the Carribean: At World’s End cost $300 million and the just released Quantum of Solace cost $230 million.  On the other hand, the hugely popular Ironman cost $135 million – which is only about $50,000 more a minute than the Dragonball movie right now.

Considering that, this movie should be a special effects extraveganza.  It sure isn’t looking like it.

I’ve long said that I thought that this movie would bomb – not because I think turning anime series into live action movies is an inherently bad idea or because of any ill will towards the Dragonball series, but it just didn’t seem like the right title to adapt.  And on top of this, Fox ignores the lessons of movies like Batman Begins, Spiderman, and X-Men as well as of movies like Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow and Speed Racer and decide to turn the movie into a “live action cartoon,” something which almost assures a death sentence for a movie.

If you want to give people a cartoon, then give them a cartoon.  If you want to give them a live action movie, then give them a live action movie.  People don’t seem to like it when you try to mix the two.

Funimation’s New Show A-Go-Go Day 9: Gungrave

Well, someone blew their clue guessing on this one.  People were so sure that Soul Eater and Evangelion 1.0 were going to be the last two titles that it was assumed to be a forgone conclusion!

Contrare monfrare! Funimation pulls a fast one and gives us Gungrave, and this isn’t even a “license” announcement as Funimation makes clear that they are “distributing Geneon’s Gungrave.”  That means we have one spot left and two clues.  I’ll try to go through and see which clue we messed up on, as that should tell us what the final title is.

In any case, this guarantees that a majority of the 10 titles are going to be Geneon rescues.

Shows so far:

Geneon rescues: 6
Actual new titles: 3

Update

Unless we get a double-announcement tomorrow, I’m trying to figure out what clue people got wrong.  Here are the clues we were given and the shows that go with them (or we think should go with them):

Clue 1

Bob,

Hope that poison cleared up.  Hate to think you’re walking around with itchy toes!

See you soon.
Maggie

OK, easy, this was announcement #1: Ikki Tousen (itchy toes)

Clue 2

Dear Mom,

I thought of the perfect gift for Dad! It’s this little gadget called the veggie guardian.  It transmits a high frequency signal that’s supposed to keep bugs off the plants.  Look it up online.

Whether you wish to do either “Dad Guard” or “Gadget Guardian,” this clearly is the clue for the second announcement, Gad Guard.

Clue 3

Uncle Randy,

Can’t wait to see your new van!  In fact, we should plan a road trip.  It would take my mind off off of the feelings of dread I’m feeling about next semester.

LET’s DO IT!

Peace,
Greg

This is for announcement #3: Vandread.

Clue4

Hey Katie!

You’ll never guess who was at the party last night! Your Ex!  I’ll tell you more about it in person.  He was asking about you! Ha!

Beth

This is for announcement #5: Last Exile.

Clue 5

Hey Ed,

You totally have to remind me to tell you about this dream I had last night.  VERY random.  Here’s the preview: You, me, a rocket and ship, three monkeys.  Oh! And you were in a diaper!

-XOXO Kelly

I was one of the ones that figured out that this was for announcement #6: Oh! Edo Rocket.

Clue 6

Dear Helen,

Wow, I wasn’t counting on Monte Carlo being this much fun!  Oh, and Crissy says hi!  We wish you were here! Best vacation ever!

-Dave

Most people guessed this right for Funimation’s 7th announcment: Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo.

That leaves the following 2 clues, and at least one of these has to go with either Slayers, Gungrave, or Nabari no Ou:

Clue 7

Hey Talia,

You coming on New Years Eve?  Angie, Eli, and you can make it!

Kisses,
Ben

and….

Clue 8

Bobby,

Thought you’d like to know that your grandpa and I went to eat at Smith’s Pie Shop last night.  Bless Your Soul, you always got so excited about their pies during your summer visits!

Come see me soon sweetie.

All of my love,
Granny

So what goes with what? Clue 7 doesn’t seem to suggest anything other than Evangelion, and it even mentions New Years Eve – the last announcement date, highly suggesting that that’s when it’s gonig to be announced.

So let’s focus on clue 8.  Given that all six clues we know are right, and assuming the Evangelion clue is right, all the clues include the actual name of the title in some form.  However, Clue 8 has no hint of the words “Slayers,” “Revolution,” “gun,” “grave,” “nabari,” “no,” or “king” assuming they were trying to throw us off by using the English title of Nabari no Ou (and for that matter, neither does clue 7).

Unless Funimation shocks us by giving us both Soul Eater and Evangelion tomorrow (or at least two shows that somehow match clues 7 and 8), someone is going to have to explain this to me.

Update 2

When I saw this comment last night, I thought about adding an update, but decided to wait until today, but I see that AstroNerdBoy beat me to it.

Last night on the ANN bitch festival forum about the Gungrave announcement, a Funimation representative mentioned the following:

Timing on contracts for new shows add a few wrinkles into the mix with announcing. Rescue licenses are an easier contract – hence faster announcement and delivery on DVD release dates.

I agree with Astro that this might suggest that Funimation ran into a hiccup with either the Soul Eater license or the Evangelion license in the past two weeks which caused them to not be able to announce it yet, and threw in something they already had in their queue as a replacement in the meantime.

I guess we’ll find out a little more tonight when the final announcement (or if we’re lucky, announcements) are made.  If we get both Soul Eater and Evangelion, then it was probably just a ploy by Funimation as they watch anime fans panic that one of them isn’t coming and then go “jusk kidding! here you go!” on the last day.

If we only get one, then unless they explain what the “wrong” clue actually meant, I think that may strongly suggest that whichever title they didn’t announce got hung up somewhere along the way.

Funimation’s New Show A-Go-Go Day 8: Slayers Revolution/Evolution-R

AstroNerdBoy ends up looking like a genius as he guesses right on the final true “mysterious” new Funimation title, which is the recently aired Slayers Revolution, the fourth season in the Slayers franchise.

There is still a slight question whether this license includes Slayers Evolution-R as well – the fifth season in the franchise which starts airing in January – as Funimation’s press release states that they picked up 26 episodes, while Slayers Revolution was only 13 episodes.

Funimation holds the licenses for the first three series as well, after picking them up from Central Park Media in 2005.

Update

The clue which suggests that they did indeed pick up Slayers Evolution-R as well is that the press release states that the DVD release won’t be until 2010 (as opposed to 2009 for everything else announced so far).  However, ANN has confirmed plans to release the series digitally in 2009, though there doesn’t appear to be any plans for a simultaneous release for Evolution-R.

Update 2

ANN has confirmed with Funimation that they are in fact picking up both Revolution and Evolution-R.

Poll: What do you THINK Funimation will license?

[poll id=”8″]

Yesterday I asked what you hoped would be licensed.  This time it’s what do you think will be licensed.  Again, Soul Eater and Evangelion are out given the clues for them.

Funimation’s New Show A-Go-Go Day 7: The Count of Monte Cristo

Maybe Funimation should have put out more challenging clues.  Once again people guessed the Funimation clues right and once again Funimation rescues a GONZO show previously licensed by Geneon – this time it’s Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo.

This is the final Geneon rescue that the clues seemed to obviously indicate, meaning that we will hopefully get nothing but new shows from this point on.  Again, given the track record people have had with the clues so far, it’s becoming increasinly likely that we’ll get Soul Eater and the Evangelion movie, as well as a third as of yet unknown title (which most of you hope is Toradora!, though next I’ll ask what you think it will actually be), which I have a feeling we’ll either be seeing either tomorrow or last.

Count so far:

Geneon rescues: 5
Actual new shows: 2

Poll: What do you hope Funimation will license?

[poll id=”7″]

I’m not including Soul Eater or the Evangelion movie as most people think they’re going to get licensed due to the hints.  Poll is open until until midnight.

Funimation’s New Show A-Go-Go Day 6: Oh! Edo Rocket

It’s Day 6 of Funimation’s 10 day New Show A-Go-Go announcement spree, and we get our second brand new show announcement in Oh! Edo Rocket.

Oh! Edo Rocket is a 26 episode series which aired in 2007.  ANN’s description of the series is this:

In Edo during the mid-1800’s, fireworks maker Seikichi Tamaya and his friends struggle to live under the harsh frugality laws imposed by the strict city magistrate, which ban all luxuries, including fireworks. One day, a strange girl stops by Seikichi’s shop with an equally strange request: she wants Seikichi to build a firework that can reach the moon.

Once again, Funimation announced a 2009 release date without specifying any specific month.

Thus far people’s guesses on the clues have been pretty right on (including this one), which means that 3 of the remaining 4 shows should include the Geneon rescue Gankutsuou: The Count of Monte Cristo plus the new shows of Soul Eater and the new Evangelion movie.

The final show is as yet a mystery, though you would at least think that it would be something somewhat significant given that it’s in the final 4 announcements (and really final 3 if you take out Gankutsuou).  I’m still hoping for Shakugan no Shana II, but I have a feeling that it’ll more likely be something like Mushi-Uta or one the biggest heaps of shit in history Seto no Hanayome.

Count so far:

Actual new shows: 2
Geneon rescues: 4