18-meter-tall Gundam in Shizuoka

An 18-meter-tall "life-size" statue of Gundam, a giant robot featured in the classic Japanese sci-fi animation series, made a fresh appearance Saturday at an event in Shizuoka City to mark the 30th anniversary of the release of the first Gundam plastic model kit.

The statue was erected at the Shizuoka Hobby Fair outside JR Higashi- Shizuoka Station in the city’s Aoi Ward after first appearing in the Odaiba waterfront area in Tokyo last year to mark the 30th anniversary of the broadcasting of the "Mobile Suit Gundam" TV series, which started in April 1979.

Read the rest of the story: 18-meter-tall Gundam statue makes appearance in Shizuoka fair.

Giant RX-78 Gundam Statue to Stand over Shizuoka City

It has been officially announced, the Giant RX-78 Gundam Statue/Model will make a comeback this year, but this time it will be located in Shizuoka City, 125 miles west of Tokyo. A Bandai spokesperson said Gundam will come to life once more in June, at the East Higashi-Shizuoka Station near the local Bandai factory in which there is a guided tour(with previous reservation) that could complete a touristic itinerary.

Originally this incredible real scale statue was erected in Tokyo’s artificial island Odaiba, to commemorate the 30th aniversary of Mobile Suit Gundam. The statue was dismantled last September, but it was so successful (4 million visitors approximately) that the people from Bandai decided to bring it back to life again.

Gundam-themed cafe opens in Akihabara

About 200 people lined up on Saturday for the early-morning opening of the first official “Gundam”-themed cafe, based on the popular sci-fi animation series. Female staff members dressed as characters from the series greeted customers to the cafe in Tokyo’s Akihabara district when its doors opened at 8.30 a.m on Saturday.

Accessible from the JR Station at the “Denkigai Exit” and just below the Yamanote line, Bandai Gundam Café is the ultimate stop for Gundam fans. The cafe is filled with Gundam memorabilia, TVs showing Gundam episodes, and even serves Gundam-shaped cookies, commonly called Taiyaki (waffle-like pastries often filled with red bean paste).

Check out the official website.

Tokyo International Anime Fair off to a great start! 3D is the next big thing.

With all the buzz of 3D sets lately in the news, it’s no surprise that the animation companies at the Tokyo International Anime Fair wouldn’t be showing some of their newest animated series in 3D.

Sunrise, hidden behind a set of full-size Gundams at their massive booth in the main lobby, had a few theaters set up for viewers to strap on some glasses and see a clip from their upcoming 3D anime project, Hipira-kun. Toei had a 3D dance routine on display from the latest Pretty Cure. Gonzo even had clips from Last Exile and Blassreiter, which were converted to 3D, the idea being to show off what they were capable of in terms of producing 3D films.

But, 3D wasn’t and isn’t what the whole event is about. It’s all about what’s new and upcoming and maybe a few anniversaries such as Doraemon celebrating it’s 30th movie release. And then there are the reflection of life stories like Geneon Universal’s new series, Kaichou wa Maid-sama!, which follows school council president Misaki Ayuzawa who moonlights at a maid café. Then you have the big pushes and the big projects such as NHK’s fall release of Bakuman. Karigurashi no Arrietty, a new feature film, was being promoted at the Studio Ghibli booth. And then don’t forget you need your picture made here so go to Toei’s booth and get your picture taken with Luffy and Goku from One Piece and Dragonball. Oh, and if you need something as a souvenir stop by the otaku toy and statue manufacturer Good Smile and pick out a figure.

Where and When:
Tokyo International Anime Fair 2010 Mar.25-Mar.28, Tokyo Bigsight East Exhibition Halls No. 1,2 ,3.

Sakura-Con 2010

Sakura-Con is going to be bigger and better than ever this year!

With Appearances by:


Tsuyoshi Nonaka is a Mechanical designer known for his work on D.I.C.E. (TV) and Shin Mazinger Shogeki! Z-Hen. This will be Nonaka-San’s first Sakura-Con.


Yasuhiro Imagawa has directed several unconventional updates of classic Japanese robot stories, such as Giant Robo, Mobile Fighter G Gundam, and most recently, Shin Mazinger Shogeki! Z-Hen. He also wrote scrips for Pet Shop of Horrors, Violinist of Hamelin, Beserk and Harelya II Boy. This is Imagawa-San’s first Sakura-Con.


Yutaka Minowa is a character designer and animation director who works almost exclusively with Madhouse, one of the premiere Japanese animation companies. His work is most notably recognized in the Yoshiaki Kawijiri movies he has designed characters for, among them Ninja Scroll and Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust. He’s also worked as character designer and/or animation director for many popular titles including Outlaw Star, Animatrix, and many, many more. This is Minowa-san’s second Sakura-Con.

The thirteenth annual Sakura-Con will be April 2nd-4th at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center in Downtown Seattle Washington.

Register for the event here: https://secure.sakuracon.org/registration/register.php

More about Sakura-Con:

Sakura-Con is the Northwest’s first and largest convention devoted to Japanese animation (anime), comics (manga), gaming and Asian culture (established 1998). It is the destination event for an expected attendance of over 18,000 fans, industry leaders, celebrities, and artists. Sakura-Con is one of the largest events of it’s kind in the United States-ranking in the top 5 for attendance.

Sakura-Con features artists, performers, educators, musicians, authors, directors, producers, and more from anime, manga, j-pop, the Asian cultural community and gaming. The event runs 24 hours a day, round the clock from start to finish and is packed with programming including: 4 theaters, concerts, the largest console and video gaming suite of any event in the Northwest, fan panels, industry panels, cultural panels, guest appearances, art show, cultural performers, educational panels, and an exhibitors hall with over 250 vendors.

To attend Sakura-Con you must become a member of the Asia Northwest Cultural Education Association. Once a member you will be able to attend ANCEA’s main event and will additionally receive members benefits including a local mailing list to keep you in touch with Japanese cultural events in the Greater Puget Sound area, a Member’s Newsletter, and discounts for special ANCEA/Sakura-Con events and offers as available.

To Register just visit www.sakuracon.org. Memberships are priced to encourage early registration to help ANCEA put on the best Sakura-Con possible-as well as to provide the most benefits to our members.

Gundam – Standing Tall in Odaiba

Almost ready…This giant 35-ton, 18-meter tall, full-scale Gundam is in Shiokaze Park within Odaiba, Tokyo to commemorate 30 years of Mobile Suit Gundam. The Gundam sports a moving head and is able to shoot mist and light from fifty points on its body. Check out the cool video below.