Bandai Visual to Screen North America's First Anime on HD DVD/DVD at AX


"FREEDOM" to be screened throughout Expo in special high-definition theatre
using latest, state-of-the-art equipment

TORRANCE, Calif., June 22, 2007 - Bandai Visual USA Inc., a leading innovator in Japanese animation, today announced it will be continuously screening "FREEDOM," the first anime title to be released in North America on HD DVD, at Anime Expo® 2007 at the Long Beach Convention Center in Long Beach, Calif. June 29-July 2, 2007.

Bandai Visual USA will be screening "FREEDOM" volume 1 (episode 1) and volume 2 (episode 2) on a continuous basis in a specially built 30-seat theatre located within the Bandai Visual USA booth (#1605). There will also be special live demonstration of Web-enabled network functions contained in "FREEDOM" volume 1 at the selected screenings. The theatre will feature a Toshiba REGZA 1080p 47" LCD TV and a Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD player, as well as an impressive sound system.

"FREEDOM" volume 1, which will mark the first commercial availability of a high-definition anime title in North America, will also be available for purchase at the Bandai Visual USA booth. Shuhei Morita, the director of "FREEDOM," will be participating in a special "FREEDOM" panel on Friday, June 29, 6:00-6:50 p.m. in Live Programming Room #1. Also participating in the panel will be "FREEDOM" series planner Dai Sato ("Cowboy Bebop," "Ghost in the Shell: Stand-Alone Complex"). In addition, both Morita and Sato will be on-hand for the first screening on Saturday, June 30, at 10:20 a.m.

An autograph session with Morita and Sato will be held at the Bandai Visual USA booth on Sunday, July 1 at 4:30 p.m. The fans who purchase "FREEDOM" volume 1 and "FREEDOM" related products at the Bandai Visual USA booth will be eligible to get their copy and products signed by Morita and Sato.

"FREEDOM" volume 1 (SRP: $39.99) will be simultaneously released in HD DVD/DVD Twin Format (HD DVD layer & DVD layer on single side in one disc) in Japan and the U.S. on June 26, and will be the first introduction of the title in North America. "FREEDOM" will be released in HD DVD, including Web-enabled network function that allows viewers to watch extra features. The DVD has already sold more than 100,000 in Japan, and won top honors at the Tokyo International Anime Fair 2007 for its high-quality animation combining 2D and 3D graphics. The complete series to be released in 6 volumes. The official "FREEDOM" site can be found at .

In collaboration with Toshiba America Consumer Products, L.L.C., visitors to the Bandai Visual USA booth can take part in a sweepstakes that has, among its prizes, a Toshiba HD-A2 HD DVD player. Bandai Visual USA will also be distributing a special coupon good towards a free copy of "FREEDOM" volume 1 with the purchase of any Toshiba HD DVD player.

Located in Long Beach, California - Anime Expo®, the nation's largest anime/manga convention, serves to foster trade, commerce and the interests of the general public and animation industry. This event serves as a key meeting place for the general public to express their interest and explore various aspects of anime/manga, as well as for members of the industry to conduct business. AX 2007 will be held June 29 - July 2, 2007 at the Long Beach Convention Center in Southern California. SPONSORS: ADV Films, Bandai Entertainment, Copic Markers, Digital Manga, Gaia Online, Go! Media, Infinity Studios, Imaginasian TV (IaTV) and the Los Angeles Times. More information can be found at its website (

Bandai Visual USA Inc. ( was established in 2005 as a wholly owned subsidiary of Bandai Visual Co., Ltd., a leading company in animation industry in Japan, with a mission to facilitate stronger, more active involvement in positioning, marketing and distribution of Bandai Visual programs in North America. From its base in Torrance, California, Bandai Visual USA has started marketing and distributing Japanese anime titles in 2006, under the concept of Bandai Visual's business model which has been successful in Japan for many years. Bandai Visual USA will expand its business enthusiastically by releasing "authentic Japanese" products with a tight relationship with its parent company and affiliates. Bandai Visual USA titles on DVD and next generation media are released under its Honneamise label, named after the 1987 animation film that Bandai Visual first produced.

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