Hyper Japan Festival Begins Friday

posted on by Andrew Osmond
Includes screening of Katsuhiro Otomo's short film, Combustible, on Friday afternoon.

The Hyper Japan festival in London runs from Friday July 26 to Sunday July 28. The timetable is here, and advance tickets are here. The festival takes place at Earls Court (directions).

There is a programme of short anime films on Friday afternoon (exact time TBC), including Combustible, a 12-minute film by Akira creator Katsuhiro Otomo. Part of the Short Peace anime omnibus project, Combustible is about people who put out fires in Japan's historical Edo period. Combustible's official English website is streaming a promotional video for the film, which won the Grand Prize in Animation at the Ministry of Cultural Affairs' Japan Media Arts Festival Awards.

On Saturday afternoon, there will be talks by the creators of the 'KURATAS' giant robot project. from the website: "KURATAS, the giant robots which won the Award of Excellence at the 16th Japan Media Arts Festival, are four metres tall, weigh four tonnes, and are piloted by humans. From within the cockpit, you can make the robots travel around, moving the top half of the body any way you like. The robots are currently being fine tuned for mass production.

'At the show, Taiji Sugasawa, the project manager of KURATAS, who has been working on this project from the very start, talks about what led him to develop the KURATAS robots, and what his ambitions are for the future. Also in attendance will be Kogoro Kurata, who originally conceived this project, and Wataru Yoshizaki, the operation engineer who masterminded the technical aspects of the operation, will join in the talk online, showing visitors the live operation of the giant robot in Japan."

There will also be several Cosplay events. Hyper Japan is hosting the U.K. round of the European Cosplay Gathering (the page is here). One group and one individual will be chosen at Hyper Japan and sent to the final at the Japan Expo convention in Paris next year (July 2014). There will also be COSParade events, which have a page here.

According to the timetable, both ECG and COSParade will take place on Saturday afternoon, with a further COSParade event on Sunday afternoon.

There is a talk on "Cosplay in Japan" scheduled for 1230 p.m. on Sunday, and themed photo-sessions at the times below. (There are more details here.)

Friday 4pm - General Photo Session (all characters welcome) small stage

Saturday 12:30pm – General Photo Session (all characters welcome) – Outside Earls Court 2 entrance

1:30pm – Vocaloid - small stage

4:30pm – ECG contestants - small stage

Sunday 1:00pm - Nintendo characters (Mario, Zelda etc) - small stage

3:30pm - Bandai Namco characters (Tales of series, Soul Calibur, Tekken etc) – Outside Earls 2 entrance will be repreesnted at Hyper Japan, offering mascots, figurines and books. On the games side, Nintendo and Namco Bandai will be represented; Nintendo's page is here and Namco Bandai's here.

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