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20% Less Booths at Tokyo Anime Fair as Talks Continue

posted on by Egan Loo
37% fewer exhibitors lead to revenue drop of 110 million yen

The Tokyo International Anime Fair (TAF) reported on Tuesday that 37% fewer exhibitors are renting 20% less booth space this year compared to last year, although negotiations are still continuing with companies that are boycotting the event due to a recently updated Tokyo law. 80 of the 119 members of the fair's executive committee appeared at a press conference on Tuesday to present a status report.

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government passed an amendment to the city's Youth Healthy Development Ordinance last month. The amendment would expand the number of manga and anime that fall under "harmful publications," the legal category of works that must not be sold or rented to people under the age of 18. The head of TAF's executive committee happens to be Tokyo Governor Shintaro Ishihara, a major proponent of the amendment.

As of Monday, 153 exhibitors are renting 491 booth spaces at TAF this year, compared to 244 exhibitors and 615 booth spaces last year. 125 of the exhibitors still participating are Japanese, while 28 are from overseas. 25 companies cancelled 117 booth spaces after news about the amended law came to light. As a result, TAF projects that it will have 110 million yen (about US$1.3 million) less than its initial estimates.

The 10 manga publishers of Comic 10-Shakai are boycotting TAF due to the amendment. Eight media companies announced a new event called Anime Contents Expo (ACE) on March 26 and 27 — the same weekend that TAF scheduled its two public days. If Comic 10-Shakai does not rescind its boycott, some of this year's exhibitors will not participate in TAF's public days.

The following companies are nevertheless scheduled to exhibit at TAF along with various governmental entities and nonprofit organizations:

Association of Japanese Animations

Toei Animation
Tezuka Productions
TMS Entertainment (Bakugan, LLP)
Bandai Visual
Studio Ghibli
IG Port (parent company of Production I.G, Xebec)
Shogakukan Shueisha Production

Broadcasting Companies

NHK Enterprise
TV Tokyo
TV Asahi

Film Companies

Shochiku Film

Sponsors/Toy Companies

Takara Tomy

Anime Contents Expo (ACE) launched its official website on Tuesday and announced the following exhibitors:
Kadokawa Shoten
Good Smile Company
Geneon Universal Entertainment Japan
Frontier Works
Marvelous Entertainment
Media Factory

Eight of ACE's exhibitors co-signed the December press release that announced the new event, while ACE just announced this week that Good Smile Company and Nitroplus are participating. ACE's staff states that more exhibitors will be listed on the website.

The 10 manga publishers in Comic 10-Shakai are Shueisha, Shogakukan, Kadokawa Shoten, Kodansha, Akita Shoten, Hakusensha, Shonen Gahousha, Shinchosha, Futabasha, and LEED Publishing Co., Ltd. Shogakukan and Shueisha co-own Shogakukan Shueisha Production, one of the licensing and merchandising companies still exhibiting at TAF.

Source: animeanime.biz, Mainichi

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