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    Gerard Way Co-Produces FFVII: ACC Song

    By Koby,

    The official website of Japanese musician Kyosuke Himuro has announced on Thursday that he collaborated with My Chemical Romance band co-founder Gerard Way on "Safe and Sound," the ending theme for the Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete anime feature. Advent Children Complete is the new edition of Square Enix's computer-animated feature that recounts the story after the Final Fantasy VII role-playing game.

    Way wrote and composed "Safe and Sound," and he and Himuro co-produced the song in Los Angeles. (Himuro, a former member of the Japanese rock band Boøwy, now lives in Beverly Hills not far from Sunset Sound Recording Studio in Los Angeles.) Himuro is the lead vocalist, although Way contributed to the vocals as well. The song essentially replaces "Calling," Himuro's ending theme on the original 2005 release of Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children. In addition to his music career, Way is also the Eisner Award-winning writer of The Umbrella Academy comic book series.

    The Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children Complete edition adds 30 minutes of new footage to the original feature, and it will also bundle an anime adaptation of the On the Way to a Smile Episode: Denzel spinoff novelette. The new edition will ship on Blu-ray Disc in Japan on April 16.

    Bandai Head: No Plans for 2009 Gundam TV Series

    By Koby,

    The Gpara.com website reports that Bandai President and CEO Kazunori Ueno said on Wednesday that "there are no plans to broadcast [another Gundam] television series in 2009." Ueno was responding to a question posed during a press conference: "Will a new work be announced in 2009 to commemorate the 30th anniversary [of the Gundam robot anime franchise]?" There will be a short movie produced to mark the anniversary at August's Gundam Big Expo convention in Tokyo.

    Bandai's parent company, Bandai NAMCO Holdings, held this press conference on Wednesday to announce the Mobile Suit Gundam 30th Anniversary Project, which consists of three phases. The "Real G" phase will erect a 18-meter-tall (59-feet-tall) "life-size" statue of the original RX-78-2 Gundam robot in Shiokaze Park on Tokyo's artificial Odaiba island. The statue will stand for two months. The "Feel G" phase will be the Gundam Big Expo, the anniversary convention which will be held from August 21 to August 23 at the Tokyo Big Sight convention center on Odaiba, just four train stops away from Shiokaze Park. Finally, the "Soul G" phase will be a Gundam 30th anniversary commemorative live concert which the promoters aim to hold in 2009. The overall theme for the anniversary project is "Always Beginning."

    The Mobile Suit Gundam 00 Second Season anime project is currently airing in Japan, but it started in October of 2008 and it is scheduled to end on March 29. A new, as yet unnamed series will mark the anniversary in Kadokawa Shoten's Gundam Ace manga magazine.

    Sunrise has produced event anime shorts to mark Gundam's anniversaries in the past. On the 10th anniversary of Gundam, the Mobile Suit Gundam 0080: War in the Pocket video series and the "All That Gundam" event anime short debuted in 1989. For the 15th anniversary, Mobile Fighter G Gundam (the First Gundam anime set in a different timeline from the original Gundam series) premiered on Japanese airwaves. Sunrise marked the Gundam's 20th anniversary with its Big Bang Project, which consisted of Yoshiyuki Tomino's Turn A Gundam television series, the live-action G-Saviour television special, the theatrical versions of the Mobile Suit Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz and Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team series, and Katsuhiro Otomo's Gundam: Mission To The Rise event anime short. The 25th anniversary ushered in the Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam movie trilogy, the Mobile Suit Gundam Seed Destiny sequel, and the Mobile Suit Gundam MS IGLOO: The Hidden One Year War computer-graphics project.

    Crunchyroll to Simulcast Reborn! Anime Worldwide

    By Koby,

    The Crunchyroll media distribution website has announced that it will begin streaming d-rights and Marvelous Entertainment's Katekyo Hitman Reborn! action-comedy anime series to its Anime Membership subscribers within an hour of each episode's airing in Japan on March 21. This will be the first time that this anime adaptation of Akira Amano's popular Shonen Jump manga will be officially available in North America. The television series runs on Japan's TV Tokyo station every Saturday at 10:30 a.m. (Friday at 9:30 p.m. EDT). Viz Media will publish the 11th volume of the original manga in North America next month.

    The website will also stream Comix Wave Films' Peeping Life comedy anime series. This new "slow-life anime" from series producer and director Ryoichi Mori ("Each Life") combines motion-captured improvised acting with computer animation to depict the listless minutiae of everyday life in a series of comedy shorts.

    Viz Media Confirms Plans to Present New Dubbed Naruto

    Toddler Naruto
    By Toddler Naruto,


    Viz Media staffer Ho Lin has confirmed in an official staff blog entry on Monday that Viz Media is planning to present new English-dubbed Naruto episodes. While acknowledging that America's Cartoon Network is not currently running new episodes of the Naruto ninja anime has it had in the past, Lin said that "fresh dubbed Naruto is most definitely in the works." Although the release venues and dates have not been finalized, the official announcement will be made on the Naruto.com website.

    Voice actors in the Naruto cast have already reported that they have been dubbing episodes of the Naruto Shippūden sequel series since last year. English-subtitled episodes of Naruto Shippūden are available at the Naruto.com, Crunchyroll, Hulu, and Joost websites. NAMCO Bandai's Naruto Ultimate Ninja 4 game for the Sony PlayStation 2 game console will ship next week.

    Discuss this in/on/at ANN's Forum

    Code Geass R2 and Naruto go on Hiatus on U.S. TV

    By Koby,

    The American television network Adult Swim will put the Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion R2 anime series on hiatus starting next week until further notice, and will repeat two episodes in the series every week in the meantime. On the other hand, Adult Swim has added a second new episode of the Bleach anime series every week for a one-hour block. Adult Swim's sibling Cartoon Network currently does not list Naruto in its upcoming schedule. Until last month, the network paired Naruto with a film for its "Action Flicks" block.