VIZ Media expands NARUTO momentum with new DVD releases

May 24th 2007

VIZ MEDIA EXPANDS NARUTO™ MOMENTUM WITH NEW DVD RELEASES OF NARUTO THE LOST STORY AND LATEST NARUTO UNCUT BOX SET

Latest Releases Continue To Drive Tremendous Momentum Behind The Hottest Anime And Manga Property In North America

San Francisco, CA, May 24, 2007 – Viz Media, LLC (Viz Media), one of the entertainment industry's most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, continues to generate fresh momentum for its successful NARUTO™ brand with the latest releases of the NARUTO Uncut DVD Box Set Vol. 3 and a DVD of NARUTO THE LOST STORY – MISSION: PROTECT THE WATERFALL VILLAGE!, an action packed, self contained story that will include an exclusive Bandai NARUTO CCG trading card and a never-before-seen extended trailer for the upcoming Naruto movie which hits 163 theaters nationwide for a special one-night-only showing on June 6.

NARUTO THE LOST STORY – MISSION: PROTECT THE WATERFALL VILLAGE is rated “T” for Teens and hit stores on May 22 with an MSRP of $12.98. The NARUTO Uncut Box Set Vol. 3 features 3 DVDs, is rated “T+” for Older Teens and hits stores nationwide on May 29 retailing for $49.98. A special Limited Edition box set will also be released retailing for $69.98 that features a NARUTO Sound Village Headband, Sound Village ID bracelet and a collectible NARUTO Sound Village bag.

The never-before-released DVD of NARUTO THE LOST STORY – MISSION: PROTECT THE WATERFALL VILLAGE offers a rarely seen self contained adventure that takes place when Naruto and the others members of Team 7 arrive at the Village Hidden in the Waterfall on an escort mission for Shibuki, the young leader of the village. Shibuki is a coward, however, due to circumstances surrounding his father's death. Things seem peaceful until Kakashi leaves on urgent business and the village is attacked by Suien, a former Hidden Waterfall jonin, and his band of rogue ninja, who are after the village treasure, HERO's Water, which gives whoever drinks it a dramatic, but temporary, increase in chakra. Now Naruto must join forces with cowardly Shibuki and show him what it means to be a HERO! Screened only once at the SHONEN JUMP™ Festa convention in Tokyo in 2004, NARUTO THE LOST STORY – MISSION: PROTECT THE WATERFALL VILLAGE! has never been released in Japan or North America until now.

The latest NARUTO Uncut Box Set edition picks up the unedited version of the popular anime series as Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura face their deadliest challenge yet with the Chunin Exam. Deep in the Forest of Death, they must battle rival ninjas to collect the scrolls of Heaven and Earth. It's no easy task, but is there an even darker force at work? Something evil is afoot, and it's after Sasuke!

NARUTO's popularity has become a phenomenon across North America. Named one of the Top 20 Anime properties for 2006 by retail industry watchdog ICv2, the edited animated version of the NARUTO TV series captivates millions of loyal fans each week on Cartoon Network's Toonami block of programming, while the T-rated manga series (also published by Viz Media) has become one of the best selling and most popular graphic novels throughout North America, regularly placing in both Graphic Novel and Overall General Fiction categories on noted literary sales rosters including BookScan and the USA Today Top 150. In addition to the latest DVD releases and the nationwide screening of the feature film, Viz Media has launched NARUTO NATION™, a broad campaign to bring an unprecedented increase in the frequency of publication of the popular manga series, as well as some very exciting product offerings, in-store displays, signage, and even special exclusive items that will be announced shortly. For more information go to HYPERLINK "http://www.Naruto.com" www.Naruto.com.

“The boundless success of NARUTO is due largely to the depth and great volume of the stories that have made the brand a success as a manga, DVD, broadcast series and feature film,” says Liza Coppola, Sr. Vice President, Marketing, Viz Media. “NARUTO offers dynamic characters with a well balanced mix of action, drama, and comedy and these have resonated with fans of all ages. We are excited to offer the latest installment of the unedited anime series in a specially packaged 3-DVD box set as well as making available NARUTO The Lost Story, a rarely seen feature that has never been released in Japan or North America until now."

About Viz Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Viz Media, LLC (Viz Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga (graphic novel) publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan's largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha, Inc., Shogakukan, Inc., and Shogakukan Production Co, Ltd. (Sho-Pro Japan), Viz Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America and a global licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including, magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, videos, DVDs, audio soundtracks and develops and markets animated entertainment from initial production, television placement and distribution, to merchandise licensing and promotions for audiences and consumers of all ages. 
Contact Viz Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and web site at HYPERLINK "http://www.VIZ.com"


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