Otakorp Featuring Studo Ghibli At 100th Cherry Blossom Festival

Baltimore, MD (April 11, 2012) – Otakorp, in collaboration with Freer Gallery and DC Anime Club, will be featuring Studio Ghibli at the 100th Anniversary of National Cherry Blossom Festival at our 10th Anime Marathon.

Each film will be introduced by our special guest Helen McCarthy - author of The Anime Encyclopedia, Hayao Miyazaki: Master of Japanese Animation, 500 Manga Heroes and Villains, and 500 Essential Anime You Must Own. All films are free, although space is limited. The showings will start at 11AM in the Meyer Auditorium at the Freer Gallery of Art:

Freer Gallery of Art
Jefferson Drive at 12th Street SW
Washington, D.C. 20013-7012

The films to be shown are:
Ponyo (11:00am)
Porco Rosso (1:30pm)
Princess Mononoke (4:00pm)
Spirited Away (7:00pm)

Activities during the marathon will include cosplayers interacting with cherry blossom visitors sharing information about their Ghibli Studio character and anime in general. Also, there will be a scavenger hunt, a drawing workshop featuring DC Anime Club artist Cheyenne Lewis and a presentation about Anime and Studio Ghibli films by the DC Anime Club.

The 10th Anime Marathon will be taking place on April 15, 2012.

ABOUT OTAKON AND OTAKORP, INC.: Now entering its nineteenth year, Otakon is an annual celebration of Japanese and East Asian popular culture, and also one of the largest gatherings of fans in the United States. Otakon celebrates popular culture as a gateway to deeper understanding of Asian culture, and has grown along with the enthusiasm for anime, manga, video games, and music from the Far East. Since 1999, Otakon has been held in Baltimore, Maryland; currently, Otakon is one of Baltimore's few large, city-wide events, drawing over 31,000 individual members for three days each year (for a paid attendance of over 85,000 turnstile attendees). Otakon is a membership based convention sponsored by Otakorp, Inc., a Pennsylvania-based, 501(c)3 educational non-profit whose mission is to promote the appreciation of Asian culture, primarily through its media and entertainment. Otakorp, Inc. is directed by an allvolunteer, unpaid staff – we are run by fans, for fans. For more information about Otakorp, Inc., see http://www.Otakon.com/otakorp/index.asp For more information and the latest news on Otakon 2012, see http://www.Otakon.com/

ABOUT HELEN MCCARTHY: Writer, designer, and curator Helen McCarthy has been studying Japanese visual narratives for thirty years. She wrote for a wide range of magazines in the 1980s before founding Anime UK magazine in 1991. She edited the magazine until it folded in 1996, after selling in Europe, the USA and Japan, and launching the careers of several writers and designers.

Her published work includes The Anime Encyclopedia, Hayao Miyazaki: Master of Japanese Animation, 500 Manga Heroes and Villains, and 500 Essential Anime You Must Own. She has won several awards, most recently a Harvey Award for The Art of Osamu Tezuka: God of Manga, and has contributed to a number of anthologies and academic publications. Her current research interests are focussed on early anime and manga, especially the artists who influenced Osamu Tezuka. She also curates and presents film seasons and exhibitions, lectures on Japanese pop culture, and gives talks and workshops in schools and libraries.

ABOUT THE FREER GALLERY OF ART: The Smithsonian Institution has two museums of Asian art: the Freer Gallery of Art which opened to the public in 1923, and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, which welcomed its first visitors in 1987. Both are physically connected by an underground passageway, and ideologically linked through the study, exhibition, and sheer love of Asian art. In addition, the Freer Gallery contains an important collection of 19th century American art punctuated by James McNeill Whistler's Peacock Room, perhaps one of the earliest (and certainly one of the most controversial) art installations on record.

The Freer is designed in a classical style whose architectural nexus is a courtyard that used to house live peacocks in the museum's early days. It was Charles Lang Freer's goal to facilitate the appreciation of world cultures through art, a noble undertaking as important today as it was more than a century ago, when he first willed his artwork and archives to the nation.

ABOUT DC ANIME CLUB: DC Anime Club was established in 2003 to introduce and educate people in the Washington, DC area about East Asian culture, through viewing and discussion of Japanese animation (also known as anime) and Japanese comics (manga). DC Anime Club also work to provide a positive, alternative activity to the youth in the area by exposing them to foreign culture, encouraging artistic expression and creativity, and providing opportunities for participation in community activities and leadership.

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