Anime Boston 2004
ImaginAsian Entertainment

by Christopher Macdonald, Apr 22nd 2004
Justin Sevakis, Programming and Operations Coordinator at ImaginAsian Entertainment was on hand to announce to anime fans the creation of “America's first 24/7 Asian American Network.”

The network will launch on digital cable and broadcast in August this year.

ImaginAsian TV will provide American viewers with content from the major Asian markets, Japan, Korea, China (including Hong Kong and Taiwan), the Philippines, India and Vietnam.

Included in the Japanese content will of course be anime, two to three hours of it every day except Sunday, and some more during prime time (that's two to three hours plus prime time).

The anime will be shown dubbed and subtitled, depending on the title, with ImaginAsian deciding which version to show on a case by case basis.

They plan to show new anime as well as classics for the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, although at this time they can not announce any titles. The first title announcements are expected to follow in a couple weeks.

Because ImaginAsian TV is to be broadcast, they must abide by FCC regulations regarding what they can, and cannot, show. However they are targeting titles that will require as little editing as possible. According to Sevakis, “Our goal is to open Anime to mainstream public, so we are going after shows that are more accessible to the general public.”

When asked to elaborate on this Sevakis explained, “We plan on showing programming that will broaden people's views of anime, rather than fall into existing "sex and violence" or "just for kids" stereotypes. Our programming should be able to be enjoyed by anybody, regardless of their stance on anime or animation in general.”

In addition to anime, ImaginAsian TV will also be carrying Korean Animation that has never before been made available in the United States. Other content will include subtitled J-Pop and K-Pop music videos, drama programs from all around Asia (including idol dramas) and Asian cinema, both new movies and classics from Japan, Korea, China, the Phillipines, India (Bollywood) and Vietnam.

All primetime programming and possibly some non-primetime programming will have wrap–around segments with American, English speaking guests who will explain cultural and translation differences.

ImaginAsian TV will be available on basic digital cable, and will be broadcast analog thanks to an agreement with the Equity Broadcasting Corp. The network will be broadcast over the airwaves in Las Vegas, Denver, Ventura Ca, Hawaii, Seattle, with more market “on the way.” As for digital cable, no markets were mentioned at the panel because they are currently in final negotiations with “all the major cable operators.” They are targeting big cities first.

With their currently announced markets, ImaginAsian TV will be available in a total of over 3 million households, with “many-many more” by the August launch.

Sevakis encouraged interested viewers to call their cable or satellite operators, stating that it is the best way to get your voice heard (as opposed to e-mail or paper mail).

More details about ImaginAsian can be found on their website at ImaginAsianTV.com.




In addition to their TV Network, ImaginAsian Entertainment will open “The ImaginAsian” movie theatre in midtown Manhattan. The theatre will showcase Asian and Asian-American films and cultural events. The theatre, which features state of the art digital projection (hi-def) and sound, opens in July.

There will be an Asian food café and snack bar in the theatre.

The theatre is expected to show anime, when it is available to them. They are also working with various area film festivals in brining what they have to offer to the theatre.

According to Sevakis there is currently no other theatre in Manhattan exclusively geared towards Asian entertainment.

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