Hanabee Entertainment Surprises @Con 2013 with New Acquisitions

posted on by Jon Hayward
Australian anime distributor makes sudden release announcement at Melbourne's one day anime convention @Con;

The following announcements were made at the Hanabee screening held at @Con today and then immediately posted on the official Hanabee facebook / twitter accounts.

Kids on the Slope

It's the summer of 1966 and Kaoru Nishimi has moved to live with relatives in Kyūshū. Karou is no stranger to moving between towns and schools, his family has lived that way for years but it has left Karou preferring his own company. When Kaoru starts at his new school he meets the school's notorious bad boy, Sentaro Kawabuchi, who quickly sets Karou on a new path through the fun of Jazz and becomes Karou's first real friend.

Kids on the Slope is based on Yuki Kodama's coming-of-age manga Sakamichi no Apollon (坂道のアポロン). The anime reunites Cowboy Bebop's director Shinichiro Watanabe (Macross Plus, The Animatrix's "Kid's Story," Samurai Champloo) and composer Yoko Kanno (Macross Plus/Frontier, Escaflowne, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex). Nobuteru Yuki (Record of Lodoss War, Escaflowne, Space Battleship Yamato 2199) designed the characters alongside chief animation director Yoshimitsu Yamashita (Hyouge Mono, Phantom ~Requiem for the Phantom~). The anime was produced by MAPPA and Tezuka Productions for Fuji TV's spring Noitamina block in 2012 and ran for 12 episodes. The Japanese dub has Ryohei Kimura (Kaito Yashio - Robotics;Notes) voicing Kaoru Nishimi and Yoshimasa Hosoya (Nezumi in No.6) as Sentarō Kawabuchi.

The series has since been streamed in North America by Sentai Filmworks with a DVD and Blu-ray release planned. While there is currently no English voice track, Sentai Filmworks has a policy on producing English dubs for Blu-ray releases, but no confirmation of a English dub or date for release has been set in North America. Kids on the Slope will be released on in the United Kingdom by MVM in June on Blu-ray.

Hanabee Entertainment will be releasing both the Blu-ray and DVD on the 1st of May 2013. This release will be bilingual with both English and Japanese dubs. The announcement was made at @con, through facebook and press release.

Image © Yuki Kodama, Shogakukan/KIDS ON THE SLOPE Committee

Mysterious Girlfriend X

Mysterious Girlfriend X is a adaptation of Riichi Ueshiba romantic comedy Nazo no Kanojo X which was originally published as a one-shot in 2004 but was later serialised in Kodansha's Afternoon magazine in 2006. The series follows the relationship between Akira Tsubaki and Mikoto Urabe which forms after a series of unlikely events involving Urabe's sleeping in class, a premonition and Tsubaki tasting Urabe's drool. After tasting Urabe's drool Tsubaki falls ill the next day with a inexplicable fever, but after five days Urabe shows up at Tsubaki's door and forces him to consume some more of her drool. She soon explains that Tsubaki is suffering from love sickness and he can no longer be apart from her, so he must now consume a little of Urabe's drool each day. However Urabe's drool comes with a curious talent, it can transmit emotions. This is just the beginning of the mysteries surrounding Urabe, the Mysterious Girlfriend X.

Ayako Yoshitani plays the title character, Mikoto Urabe, and performs the series' opening theme song "Love Orchestra" and ending theme "After-School Promise. She is joined by Miyu Irino as the hapless Akira Tsubaki, Yuuki Kaji as Kōhei Ueno, Ryou Hirohashi as Ayuko Oka, and Misato Fukuen as Yōko Tsubaki.

Ayumu Watanabe (Doraemon: Nobita no Kyoryu [2006], Doraemon: Nobita to Midori no Kyojin Den) directed the series at the anime studio Hoods Entertainment. Deko Akao (Arakawa Under the Bridge, Asura Cryin') supervised the series scripts and Kenichi Konishi (Bokurano, Tokyo Godfathers) designed the characters. Shizue Kaneko (Doraemon: Shin Nobita no Uchū Kaitakushi, Doraemon: Nobita to Midori no Kyojin Den) served as chief animation director with Emmy-nominated art director Shigemi Ikeda (Afro Samurai: Resurrection, Bokurano, several Gundam projects).

The series originally ran in 2012 for 13 episodes. Crunchyroll simulcast the series around the world and Sentai Filmworks have acquired the rights for Mysterious Girlfriend X's North America release.

Hanabee Entertainment will be releasing both the Blu-ray and DVD on the 5th of June 2013 with both English and Japanese dubs. The announcement was made at @con and on facebook.

Image © Riichi Ueshiba - Kodansha / Kazamidai high school 2-nen A-gumi

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia

Teiichi Niiya (Tsubasa Yonaga - Aichi Sendō in Cardfight!! Vanguard) has heard the same legends as the rest of student body at the private school Seikyō Academy. Sixty years ago a girl was left behind in the old abandoned school building to die. When Teiichi investigates the old school building he meets a beautiful and mysterious girl by the name of Yūko Kanoe (Yumi Hara - Takane Shijō in [email protected]) who soon reveals herself as the ghost of the girl who dies in the building. However Yūko does not have any memories and cannot remember how she dies so Teiichi decides to help Yūko investigate by looking at the school's seven mysteries surrounding Yūko and they slowly uncover the truth behind the gruesome legend.

Dusk Maiden of Amnesia was created (written and illustrated) by Maybe and originally published by Square Enix in their Monthly Gangan Joker magazine. The anime adaptation was handled by the animation studio SILVER LINK (Baka and Test - Summon the Beasts). Shin Oonuma (Baka and Test - Summon the Beasts) directed the series, Katsuhiko Takayama (Mirai Nikki) handled the series composition and Yukiko Ban (Beelzebub, .hack//SIGN) adapted Maybe's characters for animation. Konomi Suzuki performed the opening theme song "Choir Jail," while Aki Okui contributed the ending theme song "Karandorie."

The series has been licensed by Sentai Filmworks and has since been streamed in North America but no home video release date has been announced.

Hanabee Entertainment made the announcement at @con and through facebook with the following details. Hanabee will release Dusk Maiden of Amnedia on the 5th of June 2013 on Blu-ray and DVD with both English and Japanese dub.

Image © Maybe / Square Enix, Dusk maiden of Amnesia Project.

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