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Anime and Everwood

posted on 2002-10-07 19:17 EDT
Anime items keep showing up on Warner Brothers tv show Everwood, whats the deal?

"It's really simple," explains Dallas Middaugh, senior marketing manager of Viz Communications. A while back Warner Brothers contacted Paul Levitz at DC Comics and asked him if the could provide some background Manga items for use as props in the show. Of course DC doesn't publish Manga, so Levitz suggested that WB speak to someone at Viz, and so they did.

One of the characters on Everwood, 15-year-old Ephram played by Gregory Smith, is a huge fan of Anime and Manga, an Otaku, and Warner Brothers needed items to develop and display Ephram's love of Manga.

Not wanting to miss the chance at some free publicity, Viz jumped on the opportunity. But first they has to check with all their licensors to make sure that it was acceptable. With the licensors blessing Viz sent Warner Brothers a "big pile of stuff" that included graphic novels, clothes, posters and more. And into the show it went.

"It's a very informal arrangement," explain Middaugh; so there's no contract, no product placement commision or anything. "It's very exciting. It shows to a certain extent how much Anime and Manga are hitting the Mainstream." But at the same time Middaugh doesn't want to give any false impressions, "Don't get me worng, its very much a piece of furniture." So Warner Brothers could have chosen to make Ephram a comic book fanboy or and Rubber Suit Monster show fan, but instead they chose Anime and Manga.

Viz is of course very happy with the decision, and they've even sent tapes to Japan, to Shogakugan and Rumiko Takahashi for them to see.

This season Uzomaki played an important role in the first episode, and towards episode 8 or 9 fans should see some Shonen Jump material that Viz shipped to WB last month.

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