Fullmetal Alchemist to Premier at AX2004



Exclusive Screening of Beyblade Season 3 Also Set

Anaheim, California (May 25, 2004)— The Society for
the Promotion of Japanese Animation (SPJA) and
FUNimation Productions, Ltd. are proud to announce the
U.S. premiere of FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST at Anime Expo
2004 (AX2004), set for July 2-4 at the Anaheim
Convention Center. AX2004 is the largest anime
convention in the United States devoted to Japanese
animation and manga (comic books) and is anticipating
more than 20,000 anime fans and industry professionals
to attend this year's convention.

For more information, visit http://www.anime-expo.org.

“The U.S. premiere of FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST at Anime
Expo 2004 will give anime fans a sneak peak at two
original episodes a few months in advance of its debut
on the Cartoon Network,” said Jennifer Pon, chief
executive officer of SPJA. “The series has already
won over a loyal and devoted audience in Japan. And
its premiere at Anime Expo is sure to build excitement
and anticipation for its American debut in October.”
The complete English-dubbed series will also be
available on DVD in early 2005.

The story of FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST begins after Alphonse
and Edward Elric lose their mother and attempt to
bring her back to life using the forbidden science of
human alchemy. However, this carries a heavy price. Ed
loses his leg, and Al loses his life. Ed is able to
seal Al's soul inside of a huge suit of armor, at the
cost of his arm. Years later, Ed (now with two
mechanical limbs) and Al (still trapped in the armor)
leave their childhood home, each brother concerned
with the other's happiness. They are searching for any
information on the fabled Philosopher's stone, hoping
it will allow them to regain their old bodies. Ed, who
has a natural talent and skill for alchemy, soon
becomes nationally certified. He is soon known
everywhere as the "Fullmetal Alchemist."

In addition, SPJA and FUNimation Productions also
announced the exclusive premiere of Season 3 of
Beyblade. The screening will include the first 2
episodes, plus Beyblade: Behind the Revolution, a
30-minute special that goes behind the scenes on the
making of the series, plus an in-depth feature from
the Beyblade North American Championships.

Beyblade airs in the U.S. on ABC Family Channel. The
story follows thirteen-year-old Tyson Granger (Takao
Kinomiya), along with his fellow teammates, Kai
Hiwatari, Max Tate (Max Mizuhura), and Ray Kon (Rei
Kon), strive to become the greatest beybladers in the
world. With the technical help of the team's resident
genius, Kenny (Kyoujyu), and with the powerful
strength of their bit beasts, the Bladebreakers armed
with their tops (a.k.a. blades) attempt to reach their

AX2004 serves to foster trade, commerce and the
interests of the animation and comics industry by
serving as a key meeting place for members of the
industry to conduct business.

Sponsors include Viz Comics, Animerica, ADV Films,
Geneon, Tofu Records, Newtype USA and Anime Network.
Sponsor hotels include Anaheim Hilton, Anaheim
Marriott, or Anaheim Coast Hotels. The cost to attend
the three-day expo is $45; One Day Pass: $25; Two Day
Pass: $40; Children: $20 (12 years and under; 5 and
under free if accompanied by member). Parental
advisory: Some anime and manga content contains adult

The Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation is
a non-profit organization with a mission
to popularize and educate the American public about
anime and manga as well as provide a forum to
facilitate communication between professionals and

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