Takashi Miike and Sho Sakurai to Premiere Yatterman in Person at NY Comic Con


Norwalk, CT, January 20, 2009:  New York Comic Con (NYCC) today revealed that maverick Japanese director Takashi Miike will appear at its 2009 event as a Guest of Honor and superstar actor and pop star Sho Sakurai will attend as a Special Guest. Miike and Sakurai will be at NYCC to speak about their upcoming feature film Yatterman—and then present the world premiere of the highly-anticipated movie, produced by Nikkatsu Studios and scheduled for release in Japan in early March. The 2009 New York Comic Con takes place February 6-8 in the Jacob Javits Center in New York, NY. Miike and Sakurai join Guests of Honor including Brian Michael Bendis, Carmine Infantino, Geoff Johns, Grant Morrison, J. Michael Straczynski, and Bruce Timm and Special Guests including Seth Green, J.J. Sedelmaier, Matt Senreich, and Art Spiegelman.

"New York Comic Con is honored to have Miike-san and Sakurai-san join us this year," NYCC Show Manager Lance Fensterman said. "New York Comic Con seeks to celebrate pop culture from around the world, and Yatterman is a stunning example of this. Yatterman's nothing short of legendary, and we're excited to be part of it!"

“We've had a long relationship with the films of Takashi Miike at Subway Cinema,” co-director Marc Walkow said, “screening at least one of his new movies every year at the New York Asian Film Festival since his insane Visitor Q back in our inaugural year of 2002. But we've never had a chance to bring him to New York City before, and so we're thrilled to finally introduce him personally to the Comic Con audience by presenting the World Premiere of Yatterman, his biggest and most expensive production ever.”

Fans have been waiting for Takashi Miike (Audition, Ichi the Killer, Sukiyaki Western Django) to create a giant robot movie for years, and finally it's here. Starring Sho Sakurai, Yatterman is the story of two teenagers who run a high-tech toy shop which serves as a cover for their crime-busting exploits as a pair of masked super heroes. Miike's Yatterman is based on a classic anime series created by Tatsuo Yoshida (founder of anime studio Tatsunoko Productions, which produced Speed Racer, Battle of the Planets, Casshern and Macross). Yoshida's Yatterman originally premiered in 1977 and ran for 108 wildly popular episodes and was long considered by Miike as one of his dream projects. It was revived in 2008 as a crowd-pleasing television series, and now it hits the big screen as Nikkatsu's Spring tentpole action blockbuster. With a massive budget and character and mecha designs by Katsuya Terada of Blood: The Last Vampire and Cutie Honey, it's an over-the-top ride that, par for the course for director Miike, promises to turn the giant robot movie on its mechanical head.

Takashi Miike and Sho Sakurai will be at NYCC to speak about Yatterman at 4 PM on Friday, February 6 in the IGN Theater, and will present an exclusive 7-minute clip from the film. Both will then appear at the World Premiere of Yatterman at 8 PM the same day, at the New York Directors Guild Theater, at 110 West 57th Street. A limited number of free tickets for the screening will be made available at the Nikkatsu Booth (#1315) earlier on Friday.

An encore presentation of the film will also take place on Saturday, February 7, at 8:30 PM in the IGN Theater at the Jacob Javits Center. Admission to the Saturday screening is free and open to all Comic Con attendees.

Both Miike and Sakurai will also be signing autographs at the Nikkatsu Booth (#1315) – fans should check at the booth for the exact signing schedule. The world premiere of Yatterman would not be possible without the tremendous support of Subway Cinema, Nikkatsu and The Kitano Hotel, the official hotel sponsor for the event.

For more information about Yatterman and along with other premieres and events at New York Comic Con, visit www.newyorkcomiccon.com and www.mediumatlarge.net. Tickets are on sale now.

Born in 1960, Takashi Miike served as an assistant director to legendary filmmaker Shohei Imamura and later worked primarily in the direct-to-video V-Cinema industry before the one-two punch of Audition and Dead or Alive made his name on the international film festival circuit in 2000. Turning out literally dozens of movies, television episodes and V-Cinema productions over the next few years, Miike has directed everything from the ultra-violent Ichi the Killer, to taboo-busting sex films (Visitor Q), to teen pop star vehicles (Andromedia), and even musicals (Happiness of the Katakuris) and lavish westerns (Sukiyaki Western Django). Among Miike's many Western fans are directors Quentin Tarantino, who appeared in Sukiyaki Western Django, and Eli Roth, who cast Miike as a sadistic customer in Hostel.

Starting his career with the popular talent management agency Johnny & Associates, Sho Sakurai is the designated rapper of the J-Pop band Arashi. He graduated in 2004 from Keio University with a degree in Economics and has become one of the most well-known faces promoting higher education in Japan. Every Monday he presents a special news segment on NTV's News Zero, and he was NTV's main on-air correspondent covering the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Born in 1982, he is already a veteran of seven films (including a live action adaptation of the popular manga series Honey & Clover) and over 15 television dramas, as well as two stage musicals, including West Side Story, in which he played Tony.

New York Comic Con is the East Coast's biggest and most exciting popular culture convention. Our show floor plays host to the latest and greatest in comics, graphic novels, anime, manga, video games, toys, movies, and television. Our panels and autograph sessions give fans a chance to interact with their favorite creators. Our screening rooms feature sneak peeks at films and television shows months before they hit either big or small screens. And with dedicated professional hours, New York Comic Con is a market place, bringing together the major players in the entertainment industry. New York Comic Con is the second largest pop culture convention in America and the only one that takes place in the comic book, publishing, media, and licensing capital of the world -- Gotham City. Further information can be found at newyorkcomiccon.com.

Subway Cinema is a New York-based film programming, exhibition, and marketing collective, committed to increasing exposure and appreciation for Asia's popular cinema with year-round events and screenings. Its annual event is the New York Asian Film Festival, a celebration of the latest and greatest pop masterpieces from across Asia that the New York Times has called, “...one of the city's most valuable cultural events.” Now in its ninth year, the New York Asian Film Festival will land at the IFC Center and the Japan Society this summer from June 19 – July 5, 2009 like some kind of crazy, happy time UFO. For more information please go to HYPERLINK "http://www.subwaycinema.com/"www.subwaycinema.com
The New York Comic Con is operated by Reed Exhibitions, the world's leading events organizer. In 2007, Reed brought together over six million industry professionals from around the world generating billions of dollars in business. Today, Reed events are held in 38 countries throughout the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia and organized by 39 fully staffed offices. Reed Exhibitions is part of Reed Elsevier Group plc, a FTSE-100 company and world-leading publisher and information provider. In 2006, Reed Elsevier made adjusted profit before taxation of £1,052 million on turnover of £5,398 million. 

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