Viz to Release Hikaru no Go Anime

New Title Based in the Ancient Strategy Game of Go Will Captivate and Delight Fans of All Ages

San Francisco, CA, January 10, 2006 – VIZ Media, LLC. (VIZ Media), one of the entertainment industry's most innovative and comprehensive manga and animation licensing and publishing companies, has announced the highly anticipated launch of its latest anime series, and the first title in the SHONEN JUMP Home Video line, with the release of Volume 1 of HIKARU NO GO on DVD available in stores now. The debut volume contains four episodes, is rated “A” for All Ages, and retails for $24.98.

HIKARU NO GO is based on a unique story premise that revolves around the ancient Japanese strategy game of Go. The anime series follows the manga counterpart written by Yumi Hotta and illustrated by Takeshi Obata which is also published domestically by VIZ Media and serialized in SHONEN JUMP Magazine. The series opens when Hikaru Shindo, a young elementary school student, stumbles across a dusty old Go board while exploring his grandfather's attic. Trapped inside is Fujiwara-no-Sai, the ghost of an ancient Go master. Somehow, Hikaru is able to communicate with this spirit, and Sai, newly awakened, wishes for nothing more than to play Go again. Urged on by Sai, Hikaru reluctantly begins playing Go. As he begins to taste victory, Hikaru makes it his quest to become the ultimate Go champion.

In Japan, HIKARU NO GO has achieved tremendous success as a manga and anime series since its debut in 1998 in the Weekly Shonen Jump comics anthology. Twenty-three volumes of the manga have now been published and the corresponding animated series featuring 75 half-hour episodes soon followed. The success of HIKARU NO GO spurred a nationwide interest in the game among children in Japan. This success has similarly begun to take shape in North America since VIZ Media began publishing the manga series in 2004.

“HIKARU NO GO is an exciting adventure that has captivated millions,” says Anthony Jiwa, director of marketing for VIZ Media. “With its unique storyline, compelling characters and beautiful artistry, we look forward to this series delighting plenty of new anime viewers and fans, as well as readers already familiar with the manga.

About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan's largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan Production Co., Ltd. (ShoPro Japan), VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America and a global licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including, magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, videos, DVDs, audio soundtracks and develops and markets animated entertainment from initial production, television placement and distribution, to merchandise licensing and promotions for audiences and consumers of all ages.

Contact VIZ Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and web site at

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