Publishers Weekly Talks with NYAF Manager, ICv2 Head

posted on by Mikhail Koulikov
NYAF expects up to 15,000; separate industry con discussed

As the date for the first-ever New York Anime Festival and its companion industry-only ICv2 Conference on Anime and Manga approaches, Publishers Weekly's Comics Week is featuring a pair of interviews with the organizers of both of these events.

John McGeary, a vice-president with Reed Exhibitions, is the show manager for the NYAF. In his interview, McGeary talks about how the idea to bring an anime and manga-focused event to New York first arose, and how this festival will be different from the New York Comic-Con. The idea for it is to appeal to both fans and the professional anime/manga community, while at the same time also serving an educational function. According to the interview, over 2,000 fans and professionals have already registered to attend, and Reed expects a total attendance in the 10,000 to 15,000 range. Dates for a repeat next year have already been secured, and there is every intention to make the NYAF an annual convention.

The second interview is with Milton Griepp, president of the pop culture consuting firm ICv2. Griepp offers several predictions for the immediate future of both anime and manga in the United States and outlines some of the major challenges both will be facing in 2008. As it has been doing at the New York Comic-Con, ICv2 will be organizing a separate industry-only conference to precede the open-to-the-public festival. Griepp will open this year's event by releasing an annual white paper on recent trends affecting the anime and manga industries in North America.

Other sessions will cover marketing to the otaku generation (ANN Editor-in-Chief Christopher Macdonald will be one of the panelists, along with Funimation CEO Gen Fukunaga and 4Kids Entertainment's Al Kahn), a look at the role of female consumers of Japanese popular culture products, and a discussion of the ways new technologies such as online distribution of content influence distribution of anime and manga. Look to ANN for full coverage of all four sessions, as well as the entire NYAF program.

The most recent installment of Right Stuf's Anime Today podcast also features an interview with McGeary as well as NYAF's Programming Manager Peter Tatara.

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