Thursday, January 26, 2012
The Robotech Facebook Page announced, that as part of their Facebook and Twitter calendar giveaway, that the first two winners will get calendars signed by several members of the Robotech cast! If you like the Robotech Facebook page or follow the Robotech Twitter News Feed you are already entered!
The first two winners will be drawn on Friday.
CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT THE FACEBOOK AND TWITTER CONTEST
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 1:21 PM
Wednesday, January 25, 2012
It's not Robotech, but its pretty kick ass nonetheless!
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 10:47 AM
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
From the Wall Street Journal
TOKYO—One of the world's greatest export engines is running out of steam.
For decades, Japan used the combination of manufacturing might and an export-oriented trade policy to shower markets around the world with its cars and consumer electronics and semiconductors.
The Japanese government is expected to announce Wednesday that the country recorded its first annual trade deficit since 1980. If the yen remains strong and global demand weak, economists warn that Japan could run trade deficits for years to come.
This must read article goes to point out that:
- More Japanese companies are moving production offshore. (this has been happening in the anime world for years)
- The country is being impacted by economic forces beyond its control. IN particular China and Brazil are pushing up the costs of raw materials on top of the costs associated with a strengthening currency.
- In the first 11 months of 2011 Japan posted a $30 billion USD trade deficit. A stark comparison to the roughly $90 Billion USD trade surplus in 2010. Even worse the former head of the Bank of Japan, Hiromichi Shirakawa, has stated that as long as Japan Yen remains strong in relation to the U.S. Dollar, Japan will run consistent trade deficits.
- Japan debt burden is already larger than Italy's.
Why is this important to anime you ask? Well it is the economy of Japan that ultimately decides what type of anime gets made.
They called the 1980's the "Golden Age of Anime" for a reason.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 9:00 PM
Monday, January 23, 2012
Starting this week if you like Robotech on Facebook or Follow the Robotech Twitter Feed you have a chance to win some prizes.
We encourage fans to follow our official Robotech pages on Facebook and Twitter for the latest photos from the convention tour, links to cool merchandise and updates on current projects.
Every fan who "likes" us on Facebook or "follows" us on Twitter will be entered into a drawing to win a special Robotech prize! For the first week, ending next Friday on January 27th, 2012, we will select a pair of lucky fans to receive one of our new 2012 calendars.
To enter, all you have to do is click the "Like" button on our official Facebook page or click the "Follow" button on our official Twitter page. On January 27th, 2012, we will pick a fan who likes us on Facebook and another fan who is following us on Twitter to have their calendars mailed to them. There is NO purchase necessary.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 4:24 PM
Friday, January 20, 2012
In April 2012 On Screen Films will release the first 85 episodes of Robotech with orginal Spanish voices!
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 10:56 AM
Thursday, January 19, 2012
LilOmi has developed a free Facebook tool to allow fans to create a custom avatar of themselves as a little Robotech character. There is no cost to use this feature and there is no limit to how many avatars you can to make for use on Facebook or Twitter.
This is quite a fun tool to use for various social media applications and once again there NO limit on how many characters you can create for FREE. (In a recession FREE stuff is very cool!)
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
To allow us to better interact with our fans, Robotech.com now features Facebook and Twitter integration! If you didn't notice already at the beginning of the year, we added links to our official Facebook and Twitter pages on the top bar of the entire website. We also added buttons to allow fans to directly "tweet" or "like" news articles and store items on Robotech.com with a simple click of the button.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 5:10 PM
Monday, January 16, 2012
Sunday, January 15, 2012
Friday, January 13, 2012
Thursday, January 12, 2012
As many of you know a few days ago ANN broke the story of Media Blasters laying off 60% of its staff. This report is on top of the news last week that Bandai is doing a major downsizing regarding its North American operations.
IF you needed any idea of the issues facing our industry in 2012 these two stories are a good example of what I'm talking about. The industry is undergoing a fundamental change in the way it does business (and once again the people who "know this business" never saw it coming) and its not all due to piracy. (to be fair it is a component)
I think this will be something discussed further during a convention panel. HMMMMMMMM
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 10:00 PM
RAND UNWRAPPED – CONFESSIONS OF A ROBOTECH WARRIOR is an entertaining and informative look at Catalano’s creation of the Rand character in the popular animated series ROBOTECH – THE NEW GENERATION. The book takes readers behind the scenes to witness how an animated television series was written and recorded. Catalano also shares many of his experiences working on the series and explores the sources he relied upon to create the Rand character. Catalano stated: RAND UNWRAPPED is as much about the Robotech fans as it is the series itself. There could be no Robotech series without such great Robotech fans.”
RAND UNWRAPPED follows Catalano’s successful books Art of the Monologue, The Creative Audience, White Knight Black Night, The Resting Place and Autumn Sweet. His theatre books have been called a “great studies for would be actors or comedians of any type” by Midwest Book Review.
The paperback version is now available from Amazon.com for $16.99 USD
The E-book version for Amazon Kindle is now available for $7.99 USD
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 11:16 AM
The 2012 Robotech Convention Tour will kick off on January 27th in Columbus Ohio. Fans at the following conventions will get the latest information on Robotech: Love Live Alive, Carl Macek’s Robotech Universe and the live action film currently in development over at Warner Brothers.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 11:12 AM
Wednesday, January 11, 2012
The increasingly difficult process of attempting to attend San Diego Comic-Con began today. Anyone planning on attending the mother of all pop culture conventions, which will take place a bit earlier this year – July 12-15 – should now sign up for a Comic-Con Member ID. This does not guarantee you a badge when they go on sale (a date has yet to be announced but four day with preview night sold out at Comic-Con 2011) but you will need to have a member ID to purchase one.
Basically, they’re forcing you to register for their site to buy a badge and you must do so early. All the links and instructions are below.
Folks if you are thinking of going you should pre-reg ASAP.
The direct link to sign up for one of these ID’s is here but there are some additional instructions, especially for press and professionals, along with FAQ’s and more by clicking here.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 11:37 AM
Saturday, January 7, 2012
From MSN News
Richard Alf, one of the co-founders of San Diego's Comic-Con, has died from pancreatic cancer at age 59.
The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that Alf joined up with a band of volunteers in 1970 to start the now-annual convention celebrating comic books.
Friend and fellow Comic-Con co-founder Mike Towry says Alf fronted a few thousand dollars to pay for the convention for the first three years and
In 1970, the first Comic-Con was relatively modest compared to the convention that now draws more than 125,000 people to San Diego every summer for a 3-day extravaganza.
Alf also founded the Comic Kingdom shop in the North Park area of San Diego in the 1970s.
Our condolences to the family and friends of Richard Alf.Alf was diagnosed with advanced pancreatic cancer in December.
UPDATE: From the San Diego Union Tribune
In 1970, Sheldon Dorf led a band of volunteers organizing San Diego’s first Comic-Con. The 35-year-old Michigan transplant had the vision and the experience, having run similar shows in Detroit.
But if Dorf was the main man, Richard Alf was the indispensable teen. The 17-year-old senior at Kearny High School possessed two things Dorf did not: a car and cash.
“He was a really good businessman,” said Mike Towry, a friend and fellow co-founder of the Con, which now draws more than 125,000 people each summer to downtown San Diego. “For the first three years, Richard would front the money — and it could have been as much as a few thousand dollars — to the convention and then get paid back afterward.”
As Dorf lacked his own transportation, Alf’s battered 1954 Volkswagen bug was also critical.
“In those early days,” Towry said, “it was all about Richard’s VW.”
Alf, who later founded the “Comic Kingdom” shop, died Wednesday from pancreatic cancer. He was 59.
His death came as some were working to restore Alf to his central place in the Comic-Con saga. He and other founders were saluted at the 2009 Comic-Con. The gesture came none too soon — two key organizers died that November, Dorf passing in San Diego at age 76 and former Ocean Beach bookstore owner Ken Krueger in upstate New York at 83.
Thursday, January 5, 2012
The contraction continues.
ANN has confirmed that Beez is no longer releasing new anime. Details of how Beez's licenses and currently scheduled releases will be handled in the future has not been officially announced at this time.
Bandai Entertainment, Beez's counterpart in North America, announced earlier this week that it will stop offering new DVD, Blu-ray Disc, and manga releases next month.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 8:00 PM
Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Yesterday news began to spread about Bandai Entertainment downsizing their presence in North America. Today Anime News Network is reporting that:
On January 3rd, the publisher is announcing that it will cease to release new DVD and Blu-ray releases in North America, effectively ending its 13-year run in the market. The majority of the division's contractors and three of their five full-time staff members will be laid off, and all releases scheduled after the first week of February have been cancelled.
The article also explains why:In a decision made last October, but only now becoming public knowledge, Bandai Entertainment's corporate parent at Namco Bandai Holdings made the decision to exit the American home video business. Iyadomi says he wasn't privy to the fine details. "The decision was made in Japan by the contents SBU (Strategic Business Unit)." That business unit originally included the video games division, but recently was merged with all of the company's audio visual businesses, including Sunrise, Bandai Visual and Bandai Channel.
The physical anime business in North America has shrunk substantially over the last five years, and shows no sign of returning to its former glory. "A couple of times we were hit with huge returns, and the financial result was pretty bad," Iyadomi admits. Still, he believes the division might have been able to keep going for a few more years, had the SBU allowed it.
"The pricing range for our products kept dropping in Western countries, and people tended only to buy sets with very reasonable prices, which we understand is what fans want, but it lead us to a different strategy than what Japanese licensors wanted," he remarked. "So we always had a problem [with licensors wanting something different than what consumers wanted]."
If you want to get a sense of the issues facing our industry this article is a must read.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 6:00 PM
From Steve Blums Facebook Page.
Click here to read the whole statement.
Piracy does affect the business - in all areas of entertainment. Those of you who so vehemently dispute this fact are obviously breaking federal law and intending to continue this trend with no regard for the damage you cause real people - some who have sacrificed everything to produce the products you steal. I wish you the best of luck building a career based on entitlement. Please allow us to pay our respects to a company that was one of the primary building blocks for the anime industry in America. Thank you, Bandai, for one helluva ride. Bang.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 3:10 PM
Via his Facebook Page.
Click here to read the whole statement.
I'm incredibly saddened by the loss of another company in the industry that I love so much. My brother and so many people in the industry for years have been talking about this very thing, it just sad to me that so many people who claim to be fans of something are such a driving force in it's downfall.
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 3:04 PM
Monday, January 2, 2012
Hat Tip: Big Hollywood
The LA Times has a excellent article on how internet streaming is changing the old TV syndication system. (the same system that first brought Robotech to the masses in 1985)
Television production studio executives long have been wary of Hulu and other forms of Internet distribution, fearing they would lead to increased piracy and destroy lucrative secondary markets, including syndication and DVD sales. But video streaming services offered by Netflix, Hulu and Amazon.com are becoming an unexpected boon to the TV syndication market. By writing checks to license library content from networks, the Internet services are injecting new revenue into the TV business and breathing new life into middling shows.
John Nolte of Big Hollywood has a great point.“The introduction of the subscription video-on-demand platform has broadened the opportunities for exploitation of product in a very positive way for consumers and studios,” said Ken Werner, president of Warner Bros. domestic television distribution. “You do not need to accumulate 100 episodes of a series because 40 hours of programming is a lot, so many of these shows work perfectly well on these new services.”
As many of you know Robotech is heavily serialized like the above shows as well.
Something the article does miss, though, is how television marathons and DVD have also altered our viewing habits. We like to gorge now, watch more than just a single episode at a time and lose ourselves in that world for hours. This is one reason serialized dramas such as “Mad Men,” “24,” “Breaking Bad,” and the like are such favorites. These shows are addictive — in the best way.
Robotech does very well on the streaming services since it has a strong fanbase and long running serialized storyline that feeds right into what these streaming services customers demand. It's also a low cast way to bring in new fans to the show as well.
The Internet is also going to be a new boon for older shows; I’m talking “Wagon Train” and “Father Knows Best” — the kinds of shows studios probably don’t think are worth the investment of printing up on DVD. But today these older shows can be monetized via a streaming provider with almost no cost involved in making them accessible that way.
The real winner, of course, is the customer. The very narrow distribution filter controlled by a very few (most of them out-of-touch Hollywoodists) is going the way of the buggy whip. The choices we enjoy now will only multiply over time and the ability we now have to program and schedule our own “Must-See TV”
Posted by Kevin McKeever at 11:31 AM