Anime Expo Announces Izumi Matsumoto and Fred Gallagher as Guests of Honor

Jun 8th 2011
LOS ANGELES (June 7, 2011) — Anime Expo, North America's largest anime and manga celebration, has announced manga artists Izumi Matsumoto and Fred Gallagher at its latest Guests of Honor, when it returns to the LA Convention Center from July 1 – 4, 2011. Both Mr. Matsumoto and Gallagher will participate in a meet-and-greet, autograph sessions and focus panels at Anime Expo.

Izumi Matsumoto is the creator of the popular romantic comedy manga, “Kimagure Orange Road,” first published in “Weekly Shonen Jump” in 1984. Teenage love triangle meets fantasy in this landmark manga that has been adapted into an anime series, novels and a radio drama. In 1990s, Mr. Matsumoto started the production of digital comics with Toshiba EMI, and thought up the idea to read manga cell by cell on the computer monitor screen.

Right before starting a new serialization in “Super Jump” in 1999, he began experiencing the symptoms of cerebrospinal fluid disease and was forced to suspend his work. In 2004, he resumed his career as a manga-ka and hopes to bring attention to this disorder through his creative works. Mr. Matsumoto's art will be shown at Anime Expo in GoFa (Gallery of Fantastic art)'s booth in an exhibition titled “Nippon Cha Cha Cha – AX 20th GoFa 15th Memorial & 3.11 Charity Art Show.” The GoFa booth will be adjacent to Anime Expo's art show area.

Fred Gallagher is the author and artist behind the popular American manga title, “Megatokyo.” While strongly influenced by Japanese manga and anime, Fred also mixes in elements of American fan culture and other inspirations that only a non-Japanese creator could bring to the medium. “Megatokyo” is released as a webcomic on www.Megatokyo.com. Recent print collections of Megatokyo are available from DC Comics. Dark Horse Comics will release an omnibus collection of the first volumes this fall.

Noted as being “the best-selling manga series ever by an American artist” by ICV2.com in 2005 and as one of “the 30 Most Important Comics of the Decade” by Comic Book Resources in 2010, “Megatokyo” holds its own against many popular Japanese created titles. In 2009 a Japanese edition of “Megatokyo Volume 1” was released in Japan, the first original English language manga title licensed by Kodansha for the Japanese market.

In addition to these new guests, the roster of Anime Expo 2011 Guests of Honor includes Japanese pop trio Kalafina, singing sensation Maon Kurosaki, Japanese TV Host and blogger Danny Choo, Volcaloid songwriter Onyx Kobayashi, voice actress and singer Miyuki Sawashiro, voice actor Vic Mignogna, video game developer Sohei Niikawa, Crypton Future Media CEO Hiroyuki Itoh and Producer Wataru Sasaki. In addition, Hatsune Miku will be Anime Expo's first ever Virtual Guest of Honor. Themed the “Year of the Fan,” Anime Expo 2011 will fully immerse guests into the world of Japanese animation, manga (comic books), music and fashion. Anime Expo is a non-stop marathon of Japanese pop culture that's been likened to Halloween in July.

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About Anime Expo

Held annually in Los Angeles, Anime Expo is North America's largest anime and manga celebration. Anime Expo gives fans the rare opportunity to meet and hear from some of the most famous anime, manga and musical artists from Japan and get into the action through everything from costume play, karaoke and video competitions to exclusive screenings, non-stop video gaming competitions and the wildly popular Masquerade, in which fans transform themselves into their favorite characters through creative costuming, accessories and make-up and put on their own show before an audience of thousands. AX 2011 will be held July 1 – July 4, 2011 at the Los Angeles Convention Center. To register or for more information, please visit www.anime-expo.org.

About the Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation

The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to popularize and educate the American public about anime and manga, as well as provide a forum to facilitate communication between professionals and fans. This organization is more popularly known by its entertainment property, Anime Expo®. For more information, please visit www.spja.org.

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