Press Release: Animazement Announces 2013 Guest Lineup Additions
RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA – APRIL 7, 2013
Animazement proudly announces seven additional Japanese and two additional American guests for its 2013 convention taking place Memorial Day Weekend, May 24 – 26, 2013. More information about Animazement can be found at www.Animazement.com.
Yôichi Kotabe – Yôichi Kotabe was born in Taipei, Taiwan in 1936. After graduating from Tokyo University of the Arts, Mr. Kotabe joined Toei Animation Studio in 1959. Mr. Kotabe played a main role in masterpieces of the studio like “Little Prince and the Eight Headed Dragon” (1963), “Puss ‘n Boots” (1969) and more.
He left Toei Animation Studio and transferred to A Production with Isao Takahata and Hayao Miyazaki. He was an animation director in “Panda! Go! Panda!” (1972) and “Red-Armored Suzunosuke” (1972). After that, he joined Zuiyo and then moved to Nippon Animation. With Takahata, Miyazaki and Okuyama, Mr. Kotabe worked as a character designer and an animation director of “Heidi” (1974) and “From Apennines to the Andes” (1976). He worked on “Taro the Dragon Boy” (1979) with Toei Animation Studio, “Chie the Brat” (1981) with Tokyo Movie, “Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind” (1984) and “The Grave of the Fireflies” (1988). Since 1985, he had worked for Nintendo Co., Ltd. and joined the project of “Super Mario Brothers”. He left Nintendo, however he still continues supervising “Pokémon” (movies and TV series). His book “The art book of Yoichi Kotabe” is published by ANIDO Film.
Masao Maruyama- Founder & CEO of MAPPA. In 1972, Masao Maruyama founded Mad House with Mr. Sugino, Mr. Hata and others. He is involved in many phases of anime production from planning to the music to casting the actors. He is the producer of “Yawara”, “Cardcaptor Sakura”, “ Claymore” and “Death Note” and the creative producer of “Hunter x Hunter”, “Chihayafuru” and many more anime by Mad House. Mr. Maruyama founded a new company, MAPPA (Maruyama Animation Produce Project Association) in 2012. He has produced “Apollon on the slope” and others.
Toshio Nakatani – Toshio Nakatani is a producer of the “Chihayafuru” TV series. He was also a producer for “Claymore”, “Ouran High School Host Club”, “Kimi ni Todoke”, “Berserk” (TV), “NANA” (TV) and many more. He is currently producing “Hunter X Hunter” (2011). His hobby is mah-jong.
Haruhiko Mikimoto – Haruhiko Mikimoto has been working within the anime industry since he was a college student. Currently he is working mainly in illustrations and the “Macross the First” & “Mobile Suit Gundam: École du Ciel” manga. Mr. Mikimoto was the character & animation designer for “The Super Dimension Fortress Macross” & “The Super Dimension Century Orguss”, and character designer for “Macross 7″, “Gunbuster”, “Megazone 23″ and more.
Keiko Han – Ms. Keiko Han is not only a voice actress but also and author. She has published five books about the western horoscope. Her numerous roles include: Sasha in “Yamato yo Eien ni” (Be Forever Yamato), Lala Sun in “Mobile Suit Gundam”, Prof. Uchikido in “Pocket Monster”, Mito Freecss in “Hunter X Hunter”, and Luna in “Sailor Moon”.
Megumi Han – Megumi Han is from Tokyo, Japan. She is a voice actress as well as an actress. Ms. Han debuted in the movie “Sakura no Sono”. She started her voice acting career as Gon Freecss in “Hunter X Hunter” in 2011. Her other roles are Sumire Hanano in “Chihayafuru”, Rio Kamishiro in “Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal II” and Airu Suzaki in “Digimon Xros Wars: Toki o Kakeru Shonen Hunter-Tachi”. Her hobbies are singing songs, dance, scuba diving, manga and illustration.
Yuko Minaguchi – Ms. Yuko Minaguchi is from Tokyo, Japan. Now, she lives in New York. She is known for her roles as Pan and Videl in “Dragon Ball Z” and “Dragon Ball GT”, Yawara Inokuma in “Yawara” Portgas D. Rouge in “One Piece”, Hotaru Tomoe (Sailor Saturn) in “Sailor Moon S” and “Sailor Moon Sailor Starts” and many. Her hobbies are piano, knitting and reading.
Jezeroth – From a theater background. Jezeroth became involved with cosplaying and masquerades in 1999. He has judged masquerades contests at many conventions, including Otakon and Anime Expo. In addition he has won major awards for his own work. Jez gives back by offering demos, panels and lectures at various conventions. In addition, he has some of his award-winning costumes on display this year at Animazement, for a third year. He worked at Cirque du Soleil as a tailor, but also does freelance work that varies from designing suits for the National Synchronized Swimming Team, to gowns for The Venetian Resort and Casino’s opera singers and nightclubs, special events and ballet productions.
Sean Schemmel – Sean Schemmel gets paid to stand in a sound proof padded room and make wacky voices all day with good reason. He’s good at it. Ever since he was discovered doing so at an undisclosed mental institution (read Marionette Theatre) Sean has been gainfully employed as a voice actor for some of the most popular titles in animation history. He is best known as the voices of Goku, King Kai and Nail in the internationally acclaimed anime series, Dragon Ball Z, Dragon Ball Z Kai, and Dragon Ball GT. More recently, he can be heard as Batman/Bruce Wayne in Gameloft’s The Dark Knight Rises for iPad/Android, Bronk in Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal, Amidamaru, and Rio in Shaman King, Constable Biggles, Sh’Okanabo, Master Kahn (and many others) in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Onsokumaru in Ninja Nonsense, about 12 different thumbs in Thumb Wrestling Federation and Gonard in Kappa Mikey. Sean can also be heard as Paradox in the feature film, Yu-Gi- Oh 5d’s Bonds Beyond Time and as Grings Kodai in (Pokémon) Zoroark: Master of Illusions, as well as many other voices throughout the Pokémon series.
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Animazement is an all-volunteer, fan-run anime convention in Raleigh, North Carolina, celebrating popular Japanese visual culture in all of its forms. The parent organization of Animazement, Educational Growth Across Oceans (EGAO) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization.
The mission of Animazement is to provide an introduction to Japanese Language and Culture, through the world of Japanese Animation and Manga. For three days each spring, we bring together a diverse group of attendees, volunteers, special Japanese and American guests, panelists, and our staff, and together we share in celebrating Japanese entertainment and visual culture. Our activities span the various genres of anime, manga, video games, J-pop/J-rock, martial arts, traditional arts and crafts, and more, all in a family-friendly, festival-like atmosphere. Sure, it’s a party, but it is our sincere hope that everyone who attends Animazement also learns something, and leaves with a greater sense of cultural understanding and appreciation for Japanese Culture and Language.