Urban Vision told fans at San Diego Comic Con last month that while some titles will certainly see a DVD release, a few have hit road blocks in their production. Tekkaman Blade II series is still partially owned by Saban, and therefore won't see a release, nor will DNA Sights 999.9, which was an extremely expensive license that sold very poorly.
A few more film festivals will be showing the English version of Princess Mononoke, including the 24th Toronto International Film Festival (which begins 9/9), where Miyazaki himself may be in attendance. (http://www.bell.ca/filmfest/99/index2.asp) Previously announced was the New York Film Festival later this month.
Viz Communications has dropped the price on its Pokémon cardboard standee set from $19.95 to $14.95. The book-sized set contains 20 standees altogether, all of them in full-color, and will go on sale November 12. Also set for a late 1999 release are a year 2000 Pokémon 2'x3' calendar and a graphic novel of the Pokémon animation comic series serialized in Nintendo Power. To make room for the new products, some Viz Video products will see slight delays, and Viz is now reworking its schedule to accomidate them. In their monthly press release, Viz also announced the Pokémon movie film art book, as well as film comics of both Mewtwo Strikes Back and Pikachu's Vacation. Other non-Pokémon material announced includes a Heartbroken Angels graphic novel (oversized and hardcover), the second Fushigi Yuugi graphic novel and the third Banana Fish graphic novel.
With the licensing of Card Captor Sakura by Nelvana, fansubber Studio Hooseki officially closed last week. The scripts from Hooseki's tenure are still available at the group's web site at http://anime.jyu.fi/greyhawk/hooseki/.
UCLA Film and Television Archive announced Monday their newest film festival, the works of Studio Ghibli, including the films dirrected by Hayao Miyazaki (Nausicaa, Totoro, Mononoke, Kiki), Isao Takahata (Grave of the Fireflies, Omoide Poro Poro, Pon Poko), and Yoshifumi Kondō (Whisper of the Heart). To begin on September 30, the screenings will take place at the UCLA James Bridges Theater and will be shown in their original 35mm format. More information is available from the archive hotline (310) 206-FILM and the web site (www.cinema.ucla.edu). The Museum of Modern Art in New York City event announced earlier will also be touring to the Cambridge Brattle Theater in Cambridge, MA from September 19 to October 17.
My Neighbors, The Yamadas has now dropped to 6th place this weekend, taking in only 5,372,000 yen. Japanese cinema magazine Kinama Junpo expects the film to end up taking in less than 1 billion yen total. Production costs were 2.4 billion, making this the only Ghibli film to ever fail financially.
Encore Media, owner of pay-cable channels Starz!, Encore!, and Encore Action, has signed a 10-year agreement with Disney and its theatrical subsidiaries (includign Touchstone, Hollywood, Miramax, and Dimension) that will allow them to show all theatrical releases from each of these labels, according to Kevin Cook of Animania DVD. Since Disney owns the rights to all Studio Ghibli films and has a track record of showing anime in both subtitled and dubbed formats, many fans are considering what this could mean for the works of Miyazaki on US cable.