Monday, August 31, 2009

BREAKING NEWS: What Italy Can Expect On The Air

AnimeFun finally posted the last part of their interview with Mediaset Programming Director, Fabrizio Margaria - and it reveals quite a lot about Sailor Moon's return to Italy! We have provided our translations of relevant questions below, however for those of you who understand Italian and want to read the whole interview, click here!

Q: I have learned that Sailor Moon will go back on the air on a pay channel on Mediaset Premium, Hiro, a channel that is entirely dedicated to Japanese animation that we love a lot! Is there some remote possibility that this series can be broadcast on Italy 1? Will you be using the old [Italian] dub, or will you make a new one that is close to the original? Will there still be censorship? And above all, has the release also freed the rights for sales of DVD and the manga of Sailor Moon?

A: Sailor Moon will be broadcast on Italy 1 next autumn. I have been requested that the dub is not touched at all, even though I have heard complaints over all of the edits made to the original. I do not know anything about DVD or manga rights, but I suppose that it may be possible.

Italian reader Toy Soldier notified us not too long ago that Claudia Bovini, Director of Star Comics in Italy released a statement about the rights to the manga:

"We asked the head of Kodansha, the licensor of the Sailor Moon manga, but we have been told that the situation on the manga rights has not changed and that it is not yet possible to publish Sailor Moon in Italy. We have to be patient. unfortunately."

We wish we had better news, however we've noticed some very strange signs out of Japan. Even today, Naoko (or whoever is running it now) Sailor Moon Channel has not bothered to mention that the show is returning to TV on ANIMAX. Instead, we got the usual updates of a new monthly splash image, a new mailbag posting, and a character album update. Why is it that the TV show just doesn't have the support it should from the official website of the property? Moving along...

Q: Beyond the TV Series of Sailor Moon, do you know if you will also broadcast the three movies?

A: For now, I only have rights to the series.

So sadly, no movies for Italy, and no new dub. We'd like to speculate about what this means for North America, but it's a little too early for that. We hope the Italian fans can at least enjoy Sailor Moon again, even though this may not be everything that they had hoped for.

Quickie Survey Numbers!

Hey everyone!

I just finished going through all 829 surveys and we only really lost 26 (instead of the 28 we thought it was before). So our final total is 803 completed surveys! The other 26 were all deleted because they were either full of comment spam (seriously whoever put down Weena Mercator, thanks for wasting your survey!), or they only filled out the first and/or second page. It becomes hard to work out the percentages when you don't have a concrete total to work with, as well as it doesn't look professional when we calculate errors and show them to a company. "This is what the survey says, but it could have actually been as high or as low as this..." doesn't look great on a report! We're sorry if those of you who didn't finish the survey feel bad about this, but we only told you all several times to finish it in entirety! Nonetheless, these are still huge numbers, and thank you fans for participating! Last week on our Twitter I dropped a bomb that the old cast won... mostly. There is one FUNImation VA who beat out the old ones - but we won't tell you who it is just yet! We can't drop any more hints right now. I'm hoping to get at least the numerical results portion done in the next 2-3 days. The actual writing is going to take us the longest time.

The other piece of good news is as of right now, Phase 3 has 45 surveys! That's almost a quarter of our goal in only one day! This surprised nearly everyone on staff! If we reach 200 within a matter of days, then we will leave it open for 2 or 3 weeks only, and I will send all of the results from this survey and the last one together. And so far, no incompletes!

Thanks again to all of you who have participated - and we hope that many of you who finished the first one will fill out the second survey! Again, we will keep you up to date on how the report is going.

Operation Moonrise Phase 3: The Release Survey!

EDIT: Thank you Moonies! We received over 500 responses! This survey is now closed!

EDIT: We reached our goal! Moonies you have until Midnight on Sunday, September 27th, to get in your surveys before we close it!

Hey Moonies! Welcome to Phase 3 of Operation Moonrise: The Release Survey! If you don't want to read the rest of this post and hop right to it, the survey is located here (however there are a few things you might want to peek at before you do it)! This is a quick survey designed to show FUNImation (and possibly other companies if they throw their hats into the ring) what formats Sailor Moon fans would prefer to see a future release on. We’re not going to post all the questions here, but we’ll tell you what you can expect. We ask what format you would prefer to purchase or watch Sailor Moon on, approximately how many anime DVDs you purchase or receive as gifts each year, which of the previously released titles you have (VHS is not included as the format is largely obsolete now in the industry), and if you own any other releases of Sailor Moon. We also ask if you’d prefer a subtitled only release, a dub only release, or a hybrid release. Fans may remember that ADV was given the short end of the stick with their rights to the first two seasons and had to release them separately. We ask where you purchase your anime DVDs from, how much you would prefer paying for them, and whether you would prefer single volume or boxset releases. And finally, we ask which TV station you would watch Sailor Moon on if it was brought back to TV, and other extras you’d like to see included on a release. We significantly reduced our countries list (and added an "other" space to fill in). We looked at the survey and picked the countries with the most respondents for this list. Please heed the pale yellow text as it is there to ensure that fans answer the questions correctly (we had several issues with fans not following directions on the last one).

There are only two pages of questions on this survey. And only three of them require research! The first one that does, requires you to know what DVDs you own. We’re not asking for specific volumes – just know if you have all or some of ADV or Geneon’s releases. We really didn’t want to have to list every title! The second one, is which manga you want to see. Do you want a reprint of the old version (“Sailor Moon”) from Tokyopop? Do you want a retranslation of the “Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon” Manga? Or would you like a translation of updated manga “Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon”? Would you want to see Sailor V? Or how about these novels? Click the preceding links for more information! We snuck in this question at the last minute because this is the only question we could ask and we didn’t want to start a whole other survey for it. The third one requires you to remember merchandise from back in the day. It is the very last question before the demographic ones, and we are providing you links with some pictures of what they looked like to refresh your memory.

Calego International:

Fanny Pack
Kids' Shoulder Bag
Shoulder Bag

*i may use my webcam to take a photo of my lunch bag which was pretty cool. but it's in saskatoon!*

Irwin Toy:
Luna Ball

Great Eastern:

Unknown T-Shirt Manufacturer:

Archive from Sailor Moon Specialty Store.

(You will have to click around this one - some images might not work! Also, poke around on eBay, there are usually a few kicking around there.)

We have set a goal of 200 complete surveys for this one. Despite what other sites may say about these surveys being useless, they will prove to be extremely useful to the companies involved since they will have data directly from the fans to present to everyone involved when negotiating the rights to the series. If we reach our goal by the time the results package is finished, then we will wait to send them and put the results from this one with it. The results from this survey (or specific portions of it) will be sent to FUNImation, Toei, Tokyopop, Kodansha, and possibly YTV and/or Cartoon Network. As more companies become more clear in the future, they will also receive a copy of results from this survey and the last one, if relevant.

Please complete this survey! Link is here!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

New Season Rumor?!

We're not getting too excited about this, but we're a little intrigued by a message posted on 2Channel by someone named "Sage". We are going to treat this as rumor until this is true. It is near the bottom - hit Control F and look for >>536 and you will see it! We're posting a rough translation below, but we couldn't verify this industry source (or Tarekomi, as the Japanese affectionately call them).

This comes from an industry Tarekomi source.
The project name "Sailor Moon X" was registered before all of this happened (Note: referring to ANIMAX broadcast).
The advertisement is scheduled to enter part way during the re-broadcasting on ANIMAX.
This was not announced now because of the Pretty Cure timeframe.

The project registered before under the name Dragon Ball MJ became Dragon Ball Kai.

We're a little skeptical because PGSM was once rumored to be a new anime under the same name "Sailor Moon X", and waaaaayy before that, there was a rumor of a new season under the same name. Of course, the PGSM rumor was sort of true, but there was no new anime either way. Around 2004 there was a rumor floating around of a new series called "Dragon Ball MJ" but we now know that as part of the 20th anniversary of Dragon Ball, "Dragon Ball Kai" was created. As far as Pretty Cure goes, it received a lot of hype earlier this year from the sixth series ("Fresh Pretty Cure!")premiere, and there is a sixth movie on the way in October. The papers all over Japan were hailing it as the successor to Sailor Moon as well, using tones that could have been read as driving a war between the two properties. We were all a little hurt inside reading these articles because to us fans, nothing could ever touch Sailor Moon's special spot in our hearts! Once again, we are treating this as rumor as it is coming from 2Channel where some stuff is true, while other stuff isn't. Could it be true? Only time will tell! Once again, this is a very exciting time to be a Sailor Moon fan!

Sailor Moon Commercials From ANIMAX... with Subtitles!

We're sure you are all dying to know what Mitsuishi Kotono was saying in those commercials. Luckily, we found one with better quality and much better audio syncing, and with the help of one of our Moon Chase friends White Tiger King, we subtitled it! We all got this done in about two hours! Thanks again to White Tiger King for his translation help! We hope you all enjoy this commercial! Kotono, if we could all watch we would but we don't all live in Japan! Please don't punish us in the name of the Moon! This is uploaded on both Sevenload and YouTube.

Link: Sailor Moon Animax CM - Subtitled

Commercials Corner: Sailor Moon Edition!

A very long time ago, we dug up some old commercials for Sailor Moon on YouTube, however they all got pulled off for copyright issues (seriously?! are any of these products still available in stores?) ! Yesterday, we found almost all of them in commercial packs on a Japanese streaming video website, so we thought we'd rip them and give our readers who are unable to watch Sailor Moon in Japan, something to watch for half an hour! We're sure you will enjoy all of these commercials - there's a lot of them! Movie trailers, toys, video games, gadgets, food, cosplay, you name it, it's here! We aren't going to embed all of the videos themselves here or else we will likely crash your browser. We have one question for those of you who are familiar with the Sera Myu Musicals - there's a couple toy commercials where some teenagers are in costumes, and we think this might be the musical cast but we aren't sure. Please let us know if you can recognize them! Here's a couple though:

Sailor Moon Movies DVD Boxset:

Link: Sailor Moon Movies DVD Boxset

Sailor Moon Commercial Breaks:
☽ Note - some of these commercials have nothing to do with Sailor Moon but it's cool to see what kinds of commercials would air during the show!

Link: Sailor Moon Commercial Breaks

The Others:

Sailor Moon Commercials!
Sailor Moon S Commercials!
Sailor Moon SuperS Commercials!
Sailor Moon Commercials Including Sailor Stars!
Sailor Moon Merchandise Commercials 1!
Sailor Moon Merchandise Commercials 2!
Sera Myu Commercials!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Sailor Moon Commercials From ANIMAX!

Good Morning Moonies and Happy Weekend! We are now 3 days away from the Return of Sailor Moon in Japan! We stumbled upon a gem this morning and we had to share it with you! Some kind user on a Japanese streaming video site posted a few commercials from ANIMAX and Toei Channel about Sailor Moon's return, and since many of you can't access this site, we decided to post a copy of it on Sevenload. Enjoy - there are really no other words to describe this, except it appears that Kotono Mitsuishi probably recorded a new voice over on these commercials! We are all smiles this morning!

Link: Sailor Moon ANIMAX Commercials

We have also posted this up on YouTube.

Kirsten Dunst Resembles Sailor Moon for New Music Video

Kirsten Dunst was spotted in Tokyo yesterday wearing an outfit that would only blend in with the trends in Akihabara! Terminator: Salvation director McG was shooting some sort of music video (to be screened at an exhibition later in London) in Japan. Her costume has been dubbed a "whopping cosplay". According to, the knee socks under her colorful uniform reminded people of Sailor Moon, but then the writer wondered if she knew how badly every piece of her outfit clashed, and if she knew that Akihabara fashion had a bit more refined taste than what she was wearing. And we have to wonder that too! She reminds us of a whacked-out version of Bulma from Dragon Ball. Kirsten was one of the first celebrities to admit that she was a fan of Sailor Moon, going way back to 1997, when lucky fan Priscilla "Usagi" Silguero sent in a sighting to SOS , where she spotted some Sailor Moon decor in her bedroom. Turn to page 100 in the PDF of the issue of People! In 2002, she made mention of her love for Sailor Moon, as well as her wish to make a live action version of it too! Kirsten, if you are this big a fan, and you were really trying to emulate a version of Sailor Moon like several outlets are reporting, was there really no way for you to tell McG or the wardrobe people that what you were wearing was just plain tacky? Nonetheless, it's nice to see Kirsten having a little fun with this atrocious combination of clothing. Fans can check out some more pictures here, and we have another blog link from Moon Chase fan, Misa! If you want to attempt this costume, click here for some hints.

And speaking of fans, one of them has even started a fanclub for us - which was completely unexpected! If you are interested in joining a Fan Club for Moon Chase, click here! Its still under construction, but will hopefully soon look a lot nicer!

HEY - Thanks for visiting Moon Chase! Did you know that we're trying to bring Sailor Moon back to North America? Click here for our latest campaign!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

BREAKING NEWS: Stephanie Morgenstern, Lyon Smith, and Maria Vacratsis Nominated for Gemini Awards!

Nominations for the 24th Annual Gemini Awards in Canada (equivalent of the USA Emmy Awards) were announced this morning in Toronto. Flashpoint is nominated for a record 19 awards in 12 categories! Congratulations to Mark Ellis, Stephanie Morgenstern (Sailor Venus #1), and all of the writers, actors, and crew who were nominated. Lyon Smith (Prince Sapphire) and Maria Vacratsis (Negaforce) were also nominated for awards. We have posted their awards below, but to see the entire list of awards that Flashpoint was nominated for, head over to our sister blog, We Got The Solution!

The list of awards is posted below by category, with Sailor Moon actor nominees in bold.

Best Writing in a Dramatic Series:

Mark Ellis, Stephanie Morgenstern
Haunting the Barn

Lori Spring
Murdoch Mysteries
I, Murdoch

Floyd Kane
Fathers and Daughters

Brad Wright
Stargate Atlantis
The Shrine

Michael Hirst
The Tudors
Episode 205

Best Individual or Ensemble Performance in an Animated Program or Series:

Tajja Isen, Colin Fox, Dwayne Hill, Bruce Hunter, Rick Miller, Adrian Truss
Atomic Betty (3)
Elementary, My Dear Minimus/Great Eggspectations

Paul O'Sullivan, Melissa Altro, Juan Chioran, Michael Cohen, Sean Cullen, Lili Francks, M. Christian Heywood, Krystal Meadows, Lyon Smith
Pinkeye's Revenge P2

Dwayne Hill
Fangs A Lot

Best Ensemble Performance in a Comedy Program or Series

Fabrizio Filippo, Jennifer Baxter, Mike Beaver, Robin Brûlé, Jayne Eastwood, Brandon Firla, Ron Gabriel, Peter Keleghan, Arnold Pinnock, Aron Tager
Billable Hours
A Manson for All Seasons

Ordena Stephens-Thompson, Trey Anthony, Daniel J Gordon, Eli Goree, Ngozi Paul
Da Kink in My Hair - Season 2
Black Cake, White Cake

Christopher Bolton, Oliver Becker, Michael Bodnar, Sarain Boylan, Inga Cadranel, Louis Di Bianco, Carlos Diaz, Mark Cameron Fraser, Matt Gordon, Gabriel Hogan, Mayko Nguyen, Pascal Petardi, Joe Pingue, Jeff Pustil, Simon Reynolds, Philip Riccio, Maria Vacratsis, Jeremy Wright
Ham in a Pram

Shaun Majumder, Gavin Crawford, Mark Critch, Geri Hall, Cathy Jones
This Hour Has 22 Minutes Series XVI
Episode 1

Steve Cochrane, Kevin Ellis, George Komorowski, Adriana Maggs, Jordan McCloskey, Steven Morana, Paul Snepsts, Joel Stewart
Three Chords from the Truth
Tommy's Label Showcase

We'll be watching out for these awards come October 19th and 20th, and November 14th, to keep you all updated on who wins! Congratulations again to Stephanie, Lyon, and Maria and we all wish you the best of luck!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Sailor Moon Animator Muses on Japan Expo in France

In a piece simply titled The French Like the Pop Culture of Japan, animator Kimiharu Obata muses on how Anime has grown in Japan, along with his own observations at the Japan Expo held in early July, in Paris. The expo is dedicated to all aspects of Japanese pop culture, including anime, manga, videogames, cosplay, fashion, and martial arts. It took us a little while to find out exactly who Obata was, but we later learned that he was once a top animator for a few years at Toei, and worked on the Sailor Moon R series. Currently, he is retired from animation, but he teaches at Vantan Design Institute's College of Film, Anime, and Manga. He seems like a very interesting person, and we recommend you visit Obata-Sensei's webpage! He even drew Sailor Moon recently for a Vantan flier!

Over the 4 days of the expo, 140,000 people attended, and their interest in Japanese culture was pretty strong. The majority of people knew Japanese culture as more than just anime and manga, but there were also quite a few cosplayers. Through his work with the Vantan Design Institute, he presented some of their animation in the hopes they could sell some of it to some French companies to release on DVD, and he also wanted to interview some of the Expo goers to learn of different perspectives on anime. It was a bit of a challenge too, given the current economic situation, to pitch anime in France to people who have a different understanding of anime than a person would in Japan. They were under a lot of pressure!

Then he began to write about the history of anime in France. We’ll summarize this part for you briefly. In 1978, Go Nagai’s UFO Robot Grendizer made its debut in France, to the delight of many children! Many children played outside pretending to be characters in the show. However, the show’s success was met with some controversy over ethics and violence. During the 90s, Kinnikuman was forbidden to air in France since one of the heroes (Brocken Jr.) derives from a Nazi upbringing. Anime was banned soon after in France, however many fans resorted to fansubs and bootlegs of anime. In 1991, the Dragon Ball manga was published in France, and became hugely popular. In 1999, the ban on anime was lifted, and Pokemon was one of the first anime to air in France in a long time. France later became one of Europe’s most popular countries for anime. Companies later saved money by subcontracting dub contracts to local companies, while still maintaining a high quality. Moreover, France is now a talent hub for other cartoons which air all over the world. You’d be surprised to find out how many North American cartoons in the last 10-15 years have come from France!

Kimiharu also remarks that Japanese dramas are being enjoyed in France through underground sites, simply because they are as original as anime that air. In fact, those dramas which are based on anime are very popular there. He also found it a little strange that a couture powerhouse like France was interested in Japanese fashion, and even drew inspiration from fashion in anime and manga. He was astonished! But, to really make an impact these days, a cartoon must also have a manga, video games, and movies. He also noticed that girls are becoming a lot more interested in anime and manga than they were before, thanks to the shojo genre and titles like NANA.

It is still very hard for Japanese movies that do well in Japan to do just as well in France. He cites a few Studio Ghibli titles as examples such as Laputa: Castle in the Sky, Princess Mononoke, and Spirited Away. Though the concept of a girl superhero was still a little foreign to some people in France, Sailor Moon was a huge hit!

He also spoke with a representative from Glenat Manga, who he names as a premier company for manga sales in France. The representative said he has been visiting Japan several times over the last 20 years to search for good work. He not only licenses manga which he knows that French people will like, but also other manga which may not be big sellers, but just to bring good work to France. He gives an example of how he bought Jiro Tamaguchi’s work to France. He is a veteran cartoonist in Japan, but many young people do not know who he is. However, his work is an “impressive masterpiece of individual conscience”, and slowly he is becoming recognized in France, even winning the Alph'Art of the Best Scenario Award in France in 2003. The rep also said that he was also impressed that during the anime ban, that anime and manga did not lose credibility among the people in France. He feels that the element of surprise is what appeals to people the most of Japanese manga, and that it is also educational entertainment. The French are a very inquisitive people and they are not afraid to be shaken by anime!

Kimiharu ended the article saying that he was fascinated by this fusion of two cultures. The link for the article is here for those of you who want to read it in Japanese, and it’s a very interesting perspective that we don’t hear from often! There are also some great pictures at the Japan Expo's official site!

EDIT: The article has since been removed, but Obata-sensei has posted this on his website. Read his journal entry here, and a copy of the article here.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Phase 1 Survey Deadline Approaching!

Thank you to all of the fans who have so far completed the survey in Phase 1 of Operation Moonrise! I can now announce that we have 504 completed surveys (with 532 surveys in total). This means that this survey will now be running until Friday, August 28th at Midnight. We will need a couple weeks to put the results together and arrange for some way to display them easily (and get them sent off). As soon as this is done, we will post the results on the web for our readers.

So, for all of you who have been procrastinating to start the survey, you don't have a lot of time left. There are several questions with no clear answer, we can't hint to you which ones those are, except to encourage you to vote for what and who you believe in! This is our last, and one of our final pushes for the survey. If you have finished already, please get your friends to do the survey. We don't want fans to come to us at the end and be angry with us for not being able to do this. This will have been up for 3 months!

To read the post with the survey questions and refresh yourselves on what the voices sound like, click here.

To go right to the survey (please complete all pages!), click below.

Take the Survey!!!

BREAKING NEWS: Breakthrough Entertainment Picks Up Toei Series!

So this morning when a new article about Pretty Cure showed up on our radar, we got excited that maybe a US channel had finally picked it up! Sadly, that was not the case, and it was only a namedrop. Instead, we got a link we couldn't read (and would have had to pay $45 bucks to). So, we decided, it probably wasn't worth it, and we played a few tricks with Google to figure it out. We can say for certainty that Toronto's Breakthrough Entertainment has picked up Toei's short series, Marie and Gali. There are a total of 17 episodes and each one is around 5 minutes long. We posted a lot more about what this series was here in a post about Toei's appearance at MIPCOM not too long ago. This is the second Toei property to be picked up by a Canadian production company (the first being Pretty Cure). As of this writing we have no access to a press release or a news article of any kind, so we don't know what will happen to this series (if it goes to broadcast, where it can be seen, etc.). We will try our hardest to get you more information!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

BREAKING NEWS: Sailor Stars to be Offered for Free in Japan On Demand!

Many news outlets are buzzing this morning about two new services being offered by Japanese cable giant, NTT. NTT is launching two new services, AnimeJan (for boys) and another service under HikariTV for girls. Both of these services will feature anime from Toei's AniBB service. Beginning September 1st, both services will have a free preview of entire seasons of series, and included among them is Sailor Stars. We're not quite sure why they chose the last season over the first one, but nonetheless, we are excited about this news! We can't tell how long this preview is going to last but we think it will be around a month long. As part of HikariTV, series such as Ojomajo Doremi, Gegege no Kitaro, and Digimon will be included. As part of AnimeJan, their preview will include Dragon Ball, Dragon Ball Z, Saint Seiya, and Kinnikuman.

Sankei MSN posted a nice article about Sailor Moon's resurrection on Japanese TV. They made special mention of how the show helped to launch Kotono Mitsuishi's seiyuu career, and they also published a new quote we hadn't seen before. She had nightmares about how she would perform, especially since she would have to dub a scene in that very dark room without the other actors around, like Keiko Han (Luna, Queen Beryl) and Toru Furuya (Tuxedo Kamen). It was hard for her to know how to act without having them (or their performances) around, and she was afraid she would embarrass herself!

And ToFu-Sama is also in the news! Toru Furuya has just released an autobiography called A Hero's Voice in Japan, and it features his reflections on his voice acting career. He has played many heroes, such as Tuxedo Kamen, Ray Amuro, Pegasus Seiya, and Yamcha. Reviews of the book are generally good, and for those of you who can read Japanese, this is a must have! One comment we read says it is a must read for anyone looking to become a seiyuu, and another one said that he liked to read the over 10 pages devoted to Ray Amuro. Probably the easiest place for readers to order it will be through Amazon.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Some Announcements from Moon Chase

Hi everyone: we are nearing the end of the first phase of our campaign and we feel that we need to make a few announcements.

#1 – Were you our 100,000th visitor? We never heard back and unless we do, we’ll have to hold over the prize to lucky #200,000. However, our stats tell us that #100K was someone from Mississauga who visits the site regularly. If this sounds like you please contact us either by email (at the bottom) or commenting here! We’re giving you until midnight, Sunday, August 29th to contact us. Please claim your prize! It is okay if you didn’t get a screenshot – we can compare some other things the stats told us to verify it was you. If we don’t hear back from the lucky winner, we will save the prize for number 200,000.

#2 – We on staff are startled with the surveys. Close to 30 surveys are incomplete, and while we can’t delete those (because fans should have their opinions heard), it also skews our numbers to the point where many questions have no clear winner. For a choice to be taken seriously by the companies, we need to see wins between 70-90%. About half of the questions have winners with these kinds of wins, but many (even for major roles) do not. They have standout winners, but they are just not strong enough.

Moreover, when we put together the results for Funimation they are going to see these strange numbers with strange totals. It could say to them “hey the fans are apathetic about most aspects of the dub”, or “hey the fans just want Sailor Moon back, but nothing else. We can do what we want!” Now 30 may not seem like a big number, but considering the number of surveys we have, it could be between 5 and 10% of whatever gets finished, which is a lot. So now we have to adjust our goal to make sure that we have at least 500 surveys that are completed. We will be watching the results of the very last question. Once that reaches 500, we will keep this survey open for at least one more week for any last minute people who have not taken it yet. On Twitter, we may also consider posting a total survey count, and a total complete survey count, for those who don’t think that skipping everything after the first or second page isn’t affecting it.

We don’t know why people aren’t finishing it. We could understand a few here and there, but this many just doesn’t make any sense to us. Unless the fans aren’t willing to really fight for this series beyond FUNImation’s survey, Sailor Moon could be stuck in the same sort of limbo again for more years to come. With the comeback in Japan and Italy, our chances are looking very good right now.

So for those of you, (we hope you know who you are) who did NOT finish the survey, please consider restarting it and finishing it in entirety. Answer every question. You may think that the demographic ones are annoying, but if FUNImation can see exactly who their audience is (an older one versus a younger one), then this puts a better case towards getting Sailor Stars if teenagers, kids, and tweens aren’t making up a significant portion of our sample. We are sorry if it seems long, but there was just no other way to keep everything together as simple as possible.

For the post about the survey , complete with streaming video links for voice refreshers, and other quirks about the crew, click here.

To go directly to the survey, click here (and please finish it all. You will see a button at the very end that says “Finish Survey”).

Is Sailor Moon not Newsworthy?

Hi Moonies.

We’d first of all like to extend a huge thank you to all of the sites which have linked us in the last little while. You have helped us get the word out about recent groundbreaking happenings with Sailor Moon, and we appreciate it. There are too many fansites to name – but if you have linked us (we can’t keep track of you all!) please send us a link to your site and we will add you to our links sidebar.

Moon Chase was also linked and mentioned in a few higher up places. First and foremost, one of our favorite gaming blogs, Kotaku, linked us not only in English, but also in Japanese (marking the first time we’ve ever been cited on a major Japanese page!). Thank you Brian Ashcraft, you are one of our favorite editors on Kotaku and we are honored to have been linked in your posts (even though it was for such a sad news story). And secondly (and more recently), Scott Green of Ain’t It Cool News helped bring word of the comeback out to his column. Scott, thank you for your encouragement and we will continue to try to do our best, and we look forward to working with you again in the near future! Thanks for linking us on your column and helping bring word of this, and for posting other issues involving the lockdown in the past, on AICN. Slowly, we are waking up the Sailor Moon fandom from hibernation, and every little bit helps!

However, there is one site which refused to mention the comeback. Below, you will read their reasons why, followed by our comments.

This email was sent to us last week and is presented in its entirety (sans the email headers).


We only post what we feel will be newsworthy, important, and/or interesting to our readers. A re-airing of an old-show (no matter how popular), with no new material at all, is not very newsworthy in our opinion. Perhaps with unlimited resources we would cover material like
this, but as it stands now, we prefer to focus our resources on more notable stories.

Obviously, if there is ever new Sailor Moon material, it would be considered of the utmost importance by our news staff.

Best regards,

Christopher Macdonald
Editor in Chief
Anime News Network

We are extremely disappointed and sorry to see that Anime News Network, one of the English internet's most-trusted websites for anime news, does not regard this as worthy of even a mention. None of us here at Moon Chase understand why they don't see it as newsworthy, important, and interesting--we believe it to be a long-awaited announcement that many fans would be thrilled to hear. However, our staff will not continue to pressure Anime News Network to publish a story, even though we know it to be their loss. We always encourage our readers to write in tips to us regarding anything related to Sailor Moon. Perhaps our deepest disappointment is that they do not see that a licensing release like this could be paving the way for brand-new material--maybe even a release of the live-action Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon or a retranslation of the updated manga! Or at the very least, attempt to give the series a second chance with much better management to achieve all of the potential it never could the first time around. Despite this strange behavior by ANN, we at Moon Chase will continue to bring our readers news of Sailor Moon whenever and wherever it happens!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Triple Dose of Sugar!

Hey Moonies! We've got three big pieces of Sugar news! Stephanie Beard (Rini #2) is making it big on the silver screen, as well as youtube!

Our first dose: Pineapple?! For those of our readers who are into R-rated stoner flicks, you may be surprised that she appears briefly in one. Sug can be seen in the beginning of Pineapple Express, walking around an office with a ton of files in her hand behind Seth Rogen. It's a little hard to catch since this scene flies by pretty quickly. We're not going to say much else about this movie except that our readers shouldn't watch this - it's more than earned its 'R' rating. This screenshot comes from Emily, and you can see Sug just behind Seth!

Second dose: funny has a serious side! I finally saw Funny People last week, and having seen a few "typical" Seth Rogen comedies (and others like it), I have to say this one was pretty good. The potty humor was a bit overused in places, but once anyone can get past that, it was a pretty good film. Sugar is featured in a Thanksgiving dinner scene, and you hear her laugh a lot during George Simmons' (Adam Sandler) toast. She is sitting right next to him! I was hoping to see her in some other scenes but I guess that wasn't meant to be. Nonetheless it was nice to see her on the silver screen - when she came on I pointed her out to the friend I had gone with :). Once again, this movie is a little mature, but it is one to go see. It isn't as bad as some of the critics are saying it is!

Third dose: A generous helping of Sugar on YouTube! Stephanie posted a video on youtube at the beginning of this month, which she not only stars in, but she produced! The Sad Street Performer features her in a tiger costume, performing almost anything for a dollar. Then she meets a donkey...and "de-donkeys" him... Sug takes most of the credit for this short, silent, film, and it looks like some of her friends helped her shoot this at Venice Beach. We've got it below for you all to see!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Tabloids Being Unfair To Keiko

It seems Keiko Kitagawa (Sailor Mars in PGSM) has been the subject of many tabloids' fodder lately. The first one came a little over a week ago, where she was compared to Aya Ueto. Aya Ueto is an idol who has a nickname in the Japanese press, she is known as the "low-ratings idol" since she mostly appears in magazine, commercials, and low-rated dramas. According to this article, Aya has some competition with her "low-ratings" crown in the form of Keiko Kitagawa, who over the last nine months has been seen in the same sorts of things that Aya used to conquer! The article goes on to say that Aya has had a 10-year career, while Keiko has only been on the scene for 6 years. But it makes light of dramas which they starred in and their dwindling ratings. There's an error in this article, as he calls Keiko only an actress and Aya an actress and a singer. Keiko has sung songs for PGSM which we're pretty sure were well loved (at least it wasn't Miyuu Sawaii's singing). The writer of this article, at the end shows a shred of humanity saying that he doesn't want fans to be angry with his decision about who the new low-ratings idol is. He ends saying Keiko is winning against Aya right now, but has more faith in Keiko having a better career in the future. He also notes that it is hard for many idols to achieve a lot of popularity. Aya is pictured here ->.

Yes, we know this article was garbage, but we really don't think that this was fair to even put her in that category! Sure her latest dramas haven't had wide appeal (Homeroom on the Beachside lost ratings steadily), however she is one of the few stars of PGSM who is steadily working hard towards stardom (even though she is not as successful as others)! Plus, she is featured frequently on commercials for cosmetics giant Kanebo (as is Aya). We remember reading in an interview a long time ago that she didn't feel like she was worthy enough to be with all the other, more beautiful, idols that were in the commercials. To us, Keiko seems willing to try different things to put herself out there, and we know that she will never be a low-ratings queen to us!

We also came across this scan of Keiko's various romantic interests and other men she has starred in movies and dramas with. We can't name any of them unfortunately - if any of you know who they are, please tell us! Miyuu Sawai and Ayaka Komatsu are only in there to connect to her debut work, PGSM.

And thirdly, it seems that Keiko was involved in yet another scandalous mishap! Last week, she appeared on Tunnels: Food Prejudice King, a variety show in Japan. Tunnels features a campy quiz show for the first 20 minutes, and then the other 40 are devoted to celebrity food tasting, and then everyone has to guess the food that the other one hated. Alongside Keiko was a South Korean actor named Jung Woo-sung. Unfortunately, at the end of the show, he spelled Kimchi wrong (writing Kimuchi instead of Kimchi), and many South Koreans got offended. This led him to issue a huge apology out to his fans. We have a couple clips from the show for you all!

First: The Introductions, and Wine Tasting! Keiko doesn't like the wine and seems a little shy...

Second: Kimchi/Kimuchi confusion! Keiko finds Kimchi spicy!

For those of you who want to know about Korean romanization and why "Kimuchi" causes a bit of an uproar, hit the jump for a very special explanation from our seasonal writer, Starcat!

Here's Starcat's explanation!

(please note that for this article I don't use a standard romanization system -- I simply write out how I think things are best phonetically pronounced to American English speakers, with hyphens to indicate between syllables. If you are from another country or have another accent you might not sound "Korean" when you pronounce things this way, but I think it works the best to my eyes and ears! I'm also calling it the "English" alphabet rather than Latin because romanization tends to follow the English way of pronouncing each letter.)

The Korean language, 한국어 (han-guk-oh), and Korean alphabet, 한글 (han-guhl), don't really match the typical sounds given to English letters, so there can be a lot of variation for one word. It can get somewhat closer to most English words than Japanese due to the use of final consonants other than n (as in kim-bap, kal-bi, ta-sot, and an-nyohng--yes, the ng is one letter in Korean!) Some words are really easy to romanize into English -- kimchi is written very much as it is in Hangul: ㄱㅣ ㅁ (김) ㅊ ㅣ (치), 김치. it can be spelt gimchi as well (and some people/places write kimchee or other variations on the same pronunciation) because the first consonant, ㄱ, falls slightly between these two English letters. (There are two more variations on this letter that produce a more distinct k-sound or a short gg/kk sound, as well, further complicating romanization into English, but since we're only concerned with a simple word, kimchi, it's not our problem.) The -chi part is slightly less complicated, because the ch, ㅊ, is already what's called an "aspirated" consonant, which means it's pronounced almost exactly like "ch" is in English. The letter it's based on, ㅈ, is more of a j/ch combination--again, causing romanization problems in a different way.

Japanese, though, does not have these ending consonants. To write "kimchi" in Japanese, you must write ki-mu-chi, or キムチ. The u sound is usually dropped or only briefly pronounced so it ends up sounding very close to kimchi in Korean. It's not a problem, right?

Well, to the Korean people, it is. The Japanese occupied Korea for a long time, and there is still a bit of jealousy and tension between the two countries. Japan has tried to get Korea's national dish standardized in English as "kimuchi". While I am not a Korean national or even Korean by heritage, my guess is that this misspelling was so offensive because of two reasons: for one, it's the Japanese way, not the Korean way; for two, an unknowing English speaker would pronounce kimuchi different than kimchi. In short, the romanization directly from Korean is the best way and to do it otherwise is weird and insulting, particularly for such a high-profile dish! Even though this K-Pop star was in Japan, he should have been representing Korea and spelling it the Korean way.

I'm still a learning Korean student--if anyone knows if "kimuchi" is a real word in Korean (the basic hangul spellings I tried in Google Translate produced nothing) please write in and let us know!


For more information on how to pronounce Korean consonants:

The English article about this scandal from All

More on kimchi as a food:

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

DALI to be Included on New Anime Compilation in HQ!

Columbia Records in Japan will be releasing a second volume of favorite anime theme songs next month! Our Favorite Anime Songs 2 will be released September 18th, and will be in the HQCD format (no special player required). Included on this release are songs from City Hunter, Dragon Quest, Dragonball, Yawara, and DALI’s rendition of the Sailor Moon theme song, Moonlight Densetsu (Moonlight Legend). Fans may recall that DALI’s rendition was used for the first two seasons. Another person involved with Sailor Moon makes an appearance on this album - Mitsuko Horie's (Sailor Galaxia) performance of a memorable song from Candy Candy is also featured! the entire tracklist is listed below, and fans who are not in Japan can purchase it from their favorite Japanese online retailer.

1. Theme from Lupin the Third – Lupin the 3rd
2. City Hunter - Love doesn't disappear - - City Hunter
3. Miracle Girl - Yawara
4. I’ll Give You Romance - Dragonball
5. Believe in Dreams – Dragon Quest
6. Hello Sadness – Maison Ikkoku
7. Youth - Touch
8. Blazing Kinnikuman - Kinnikuman
9. Galaxy Express 999 Theme – Galaxy Express 999
10. Moonlight Legend – Sailor Moon
11. Riding the Boat of Dreams - Captain Future
12. Light Year Dream - Spaceship Sagittarius
13. 10% Chance of Rain - Miyuki
14. Ro Ro Ro Russian Roulette – Dirty Pair
15. I Caught Mr. Sun in a Bucket - Chie the Brat
16. Genius Bakabon Theme – Genius Bakabon
17. Gatchaman's Song - Gatchaman
18. Tomorrow’s Joe Theme – Tomorrow’s Joe
19. Yuke! Tiger Mask – Tiger Mask
20. Open Road – Dog of Flanders
21. I Love Tomorrow – Mitsuko Horie
22. Babel II Theme – Babel II

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Yu Yu Hakusho to Get New Episode...

In Pictures with Voice!

Japanese Yu Yu Hakusho fans will be getting an extra bonus added onto the upcoming Blu-Ray release of the first season - a new episode! Well, sorta. Imagine still pictures with voices, and that's what this new episode will be like (known as a "picture drama" in Japanese). The four main characters of the show, Nozomu Sasaki (Kurumiwario), Shigeru Chiba, Megumi Ogata (Sailor Uranus, Petz), and Nobuyuki Hiyama (Mercurius, Tsunawataro, Eda Yosaku) will return, along with others. We're thinking it will be like the Flashimated manga episodes on Sailor Moon Channel, except in full color. The episode is said to be a brand new story that takes place right after the final episode. We look forward to seeing what this will be like, and we hope fans of YYH will be satisfied. As of this writing we can't say for sure whether FUNImation will release this series on Blu-Ray with this episode, but we'll have to see. The series will be released on October 27th, and will feature 32 episodes over 5 discs. The jackets will also feature new artwork from Togashi himself. Extras include a bonus disc with episodes of the OVA Eizō Hakusho: Ankoku Bujutsukai. For you tech buffs, the episodes will be featured in 4:3 with 1080p resolution in MPEG-4 AVC format with PCM sound. For more information on what all that stuff means, feel free to ask The Me. The boxart for the upcoming release is pictured above, and it will cost at ¥42,000 , which is approximately $435 USD. Yes, we're having a heart attack too just looking at that price!

Each of the actors involved also had a few comments to say about this experience! Nozomu says he was happy to work with them all again and looks forward to getting a Blu-Ray player so he can watch all 50 hours of episodes together! Shigeru felt that nothing had changed in the ten years since they had recorded. Megumi is happy that the series is being released in better quality, and she is happy to work on it again. Nobuyuki is happy that the cast had a reunion after so many years.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Will you be our 100,000th Visitor?

Watch the bottom of the page, Moonies! If you are our 100,000th visitor, and can send us a screenshot (email it to us at the bottom of the page), you will win a banner, and the chance to write up a guest post about Sailor Moon (anything you want , so long as it's PG-13). Also, we'll link you in one of our sidebars (which will be reorganized in the next few days). This is a huge milestone for a site that many in the beginning told us would never take off, and we are celebrating this! Thanks for all your support since March 2007, Moonies!

Friday, August 07, 2009

Sailor Moon in Full Bloom in Japan!

Some of you may remember an older article about Sailor Moon Flowers that we posted a long time ago. The Happy Valley Sailor Moon sunflower blooms during July, and many bloggers have made the trek to Showa Kinen Park to see the many sunflowers there, and they have posted some beautiful shots of Sailor Moon's floral namesake. We'd also like to think that they are a little late blooming this year so they could have coincided with all these major Sailor Moon announcements as of late. We thought we'd share a few of the best shots! This one in particular comes from Saccyon. Tanpopo-jyo features two shots of the field and a single flower (third and fourth pictures). The first photo on Kiyo1503 has a nice photo of a young flower! Saccyon has lots of great closeups of the sunflowers, including one with a bee! Pennginn Muranorimaki has a not-so-great shot of a part of the field that looks like it's been trampled on. Yhanacomachi has one simple but wonderful hi-res closeup of the sunflower with a bee. Inkyotei begins and ends with Happy Valley Sailor Moon. Tachiaoi has one of a young flower in bloom, and there are plenty more closeups at Rin Hikari's blog! To finish off, Nobutaka has posted a picture of the field and a closeup.

And, Finally We Report About That Other Orchid...

A long time ago, an anonymous commenter (or two) pointed us to a fourth flower named for Sailor Moon. We thought that this post would be a better place to talk about it! Sophrolaeliocattleya Gemstone 'Sailor Moon' is a hybrid orchid, the result of a cross between Sophrocattleya Batemanniana 'Bette' and Sophrolaeliocattleya Phillip Ho 'Alisa'. The words under the picture tell us that this orchid is a souvenir, and we are inclined to believe that this flower is no longer commercially available. We searched a database of plant varieties in Japanese, and this orchid is no longer listed. It may lie in a private collection and sold privately, but despite our best efforts to search florists' websites and other retail sites, we were unable to find this orchid. Most times you can hit up a database and type in a fraction of the name or the variety number (CM-1975-1) and find some trace of it, but we had no such luck :(. If any of our fans know anything else about this orchid (like how it got it's name or whatever happened to this Dogashima horticulturist) please let us know!

Sailor Moon Scheduled to be Aired Three Times a Day in Japan!

Pages for Sailor Moon are coming up pretty quickly! We have just learned from ANIMAX that Sailor Moon will be airing three times a day - mid-morning, afternoon, and primetime. The show has also been added to a special section on the site entitled "Anime for Girls" (though we think a lot of the series they have listed have a much wider appeal). Yoshihiro Togashi's Hunter x Hunter is also scheduled to air three times a day as well, more on that later.

Sailor Moon Schedule for Weekdays, beginning September 1st:

10:00 AM - Dragon Ball Z
10:30 AM - Hunter X Hunter
11:00 AM - Sailor Moon (**beginning September 2nd, the episode that airs in this timeslot will be the episode that aired the day before at 4:00 and 9:00**)
11:30 AM - Sgt. Frog
12:00 PM - Death Note
12:30 PM - NANA

3:00 PM - Scarecrowman
3:30 PM - Chie the Brat
4:00 PM - Sailor Moon
4:30 PM - Dragon Ball Z
5:00 PM - Kochikame
5:30 PM - Kochikame

8:00 PM - Death Note
8:30 PM - Mister Ajikko
9:00 PM - Sailor Moon
9:30 PM - Dragon Ball Z
10:00 PM - Mononoke
10:30 PM - Konnichiwa Anne: Before Green Gables

Hunter X Hunter will air 3 times a day, at 4:00 AM, 10:30 AM, and at 7:30 PM. A new episode will air in the evening during primetime, and will be repeated in the wee hours of the morning at 4:00 AM and also at 10:30 AM. We wonder if Yoshihiro and Naoko will record the morning broadcast so that they can watch their shows together with their son?

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Breaking News: Sailor Moon Goes Mobile!

Just when we were wishing that Sailor Moon could give a moondusting to whoever is attacking the social networks today (yes, even Facebook is giving us lag!) we are alerted to another big, big, press release out of Japan. If you are on NTT Docomo, AU, or Softbank in Japan, and you have a specific cell phone, you can access Sailor Moon now has a mobile website (known as 「セーラームーン☆ANiMO」), where fans can download short flash segments of episodes, ringtones, wallpapers, and other themes to make your entire phone Sailor Moon themed. There are many other series on the ANiMO service, however even we are quite surprised at how quickly this has come about since the announcements are barely over a week old! All 200 episodes will be available on this service, and cell phone users have a choice of a few different monthly packages.¥105 will get you 100 points, ¥315 will get you 300 points, and ¥525 will get you 500 points for the service per month. The service began today. If any of our readers in Japan qualify to at least preview this mobile site, we'd love to hear from you! We have posted a screenshot of what some of this looks like, from Toei's site. How many of you are jealous reading this? We sure are!

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

BREAKING NEWS: More Confirmation From Italy!

AnimeFun has posted the first part of their interview with Fabrizio Margaria. There is nothing too revealing in it about how much work had to be done to get the series back, but there are a couple short statements that do confirm this: Sailor Moon will be returning! This guy pictured is Fabrizio himself. He kinda reminds us of Kevin Sorbo's Hercules.

AnimeFun: Quali sono i vostri ultimi acquisti? (Quelli che noi ancora non conosciamo)

Future GPX Cyber Formula
Penguins of Madagascar
tutti i Looney Tunes e i Tom & Jerry
Saint Seiya
Tutte le serie di Sailor Moon
Come vedete non compro soltanto cose Giapponesi.


AnimeFun: Which series have you acquired? (For those of us who don't know)

Future GPX Cyber Formula
Penguins of Madagascar
All of Looney Tunes and Tom & Jerry
Saint Seiya
All the series of Sailor Moon
As you can see, not just shows from Japan.

Later on in the interview...

AnimeFun: C'è la minima possibilità di rivedere Sailor Moon in tv, anche solo i film, o il blocco dei diritti è ancora attivo?

Fabrizio: SAILOR MOON tornerà agli inizi di Gennaio 2010 su HIRO!!!!


AnimeFun: Is there a chance to renew Sailor Moon on TV, even just for the movies, or is the blocking of the rights still active?

Sailor Moon will return on HIRO in early January of 2010!

Given this information, it is highly likely that Italians are not going to see a redub. Nonetheless, we are happy about this news and we are officially one step closer to having a return in North America, and possibly other markets in the world! Odango-atama's comeback continues!

Finer Details of Kanada Memorial

Anido has posted some very specific guidelines for Yoshinori Kanada's upcoming memorial on August 30th. We thought we'd share since we found it interesting and many of you might like to read about them! Ticket applications sold out within 12 minutes of them going online, and many fans have expressed interest to wait outside while the memorial is taking place, or waiting in a nearby shopping mall. This is being discouraged as it is not a safe idea for those places to be overcrowded either. There is a stress dress code to be adhered too as well - they have requested dark clothing/funeral attire. Fans will be refused entry if you are wearing colored clothing (especially hawaiian clothing) and they are deeming it disrespectful to cosplay at this service. Fans can't dress like an animator either. No shorts or T-shirts either. Recording and photography is prohibited. No children under the age of 5 will be admitted. There is also no parking available so everyone is told to use alternative arrangements, including public transportation. Kanada's family will also be there, and that is why all of these directives for funeral attire are in place. This will not be televised but there will be portions shown in the newsmedia. There will be speeches and screenings of his most important work. Fans who were successful enough to get a ticket should receive it in the mail by the 24th. Many prominent animators and studios are sponsoring this event. We hope that we are able to access some of the reports of this event in Japan and bring you more details - we are sure that he has impacted many fans in North America in the same way he had an impact on his fans in Japan!

We also learned
that his private funeral and wake were held on the 25th and 26th of July, and he was survived by his wife, Makiko. Once again, our staff sends our deepest sympathies to Makiko, his family, his friends, and colleagues.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

More Sailor Moon Schedule Info in Japan, and New Kotono Mitsuishi interview!

Last night, a new article was posted in the news about the return of Sailor Moon in Japan. We learned a few more details about what else will be airing. The article made special mention of how Sailor Moon sparked a Sailor Senshi costume craze, and also a boom in female superheroes in the industry. ANIMAX finally posted their transcript of their interview with Kotono Mitsuishi, and we have it translated for you below!

First off, we'll start off with scheduling. Toei Channel will be airing not only the three movies (R, S, and SS), but will show Make-up Sailor Senshi and Ami's First Love afterwards, all in a marathon at 10:00 AM on September 5th! ANIMAX was also confirmed to be airing all 200 episodes beginning on September 1st. One will be aired each weekday at 4:00 PM. Perfect for Japanese schoolchildren who want a break after school!

And now for the interview - which Japanese readers can go here to read! Kotono gave a very heartwarming interview, and we have a much greater appreciation for the effort in her role than we ever did before. We hope that this brings you all a smile! Special thanks to Aaron for his help translating this - Moonies can go visit his site, Game Socks for a game or two!

Interviewer: Sailor Moon first began broadcasting in 1992, what are your current feelings about a re-broadcast after 17 years?

Kotono: I think that it is great for everyone to see all the episodes and see her star shine again!

Interviewer: Do you have any special memories looking back on that time?

Kotono: Because I had passed that audition just after making my debut, there was terrible pressure. It was dark in there and sometimes I couldn't read the script, and I had so many nightmares before we recorded the first episode! This was a new stage in my life, as I had passed my first audition after failing many.

Interviewer: Can you teach us a way that parent and child can enjoy Sailor Moon? The girls who were fans of Sailor Moon when it first aired, I think are mothers now!

Kotono: I promise one episode a day and I watch it with my daughter on DVD! she learns a lot from the show because of all the attractive characters with strong personalities like Mercury, Venus, et al. in the show, they are remembered easily. For each child, I think it is fun to see the different personalities become intertwined! My daughter points out "It's Hino Rei"!

Interviewer: How did you tackle the line "In the name of the moon, I will punish you" with feeling?

Kotono: I think that line was there from the first episode, but it probably came from a line from a period adventure drama, don't you think? "In the name of the moon, I will punish you!" I tackled her yell like something out of Momotaro Samurai or Mito Koumon. (NOTE: these are Japanese Soaps)

Interviewer: Usagi had two sides to her, she was a normal girl who was very lovely on one side, but was it easy to play her other side?

Kotono: Usagi cries a lot in the series and escapes or lies and then escapes, although she is always supposed to be the hero and she should fight. However she would also say, "I do not want to fight anymore". When she said that, it was easier to play that role since she was doing her best efforts to save her friends. As for "I am actually Sailor Moon" , I sympathized with her thought because I gradually got into a stride with it. I would think secretly that I am actually playing Sailor Moon. I wondered if it was possible, for the character to grow without the meaning behind this line.

Interviewer: Out of all the characters in the show, do you have a favorite?

Kotono: It is Usagi Tsukino, no question! I like others too, especially Uranus and Neptune. I felt that they were more grown-up.

Interviewer: when I was younger, I enjoyed watching the transformations! Can you tell us how do you decide how you are going to play a character?

Kotono: When doing an audition, no matter what it is, you always think "I really want this role!" So I hold that thought in my hand and I strive to reach new heights. Foremost I report to my superiors , then the pressure of a tsunami pushes me forward, and day-to-day it's a fight to be my best!

Interviewer: It looked like you were having lots of fun playing Usagi, but what personally were your favorite scenes?

Kotono: To go from laughing like a fool with friends to performing a straight man routine was simply fun. That, and the "I'll punish you!" speeches were fun and cool, but as an actress I wanted to come up with originality behind my method of performing them.

Interviewer: Mitsuishi-san, you've been in various projects, but looking back on your Sailor Moon recording experience, is there anything else you'd like to say?

Kotono: "Try with all your heart" as they say, right? (laughs) But nowadays I tend to think, "Seek help from those around you."

Interviewer: Thank you!

Later this week, we will be posting an old Terri Hawkes interview - her site has disappeared off the face of the internet, but we have managed to find a cache which will be posted here!