A lot has been going on with Sailor Moon in Europe in the last months, so let's catch up on the situation in the Moon Kingdom!
☾ First, let's start off with some only-interesting-to-some-and-boring-to-others industry briefs. Toei Animation Europe (TAE) has been exhibiting at lots of different places, and is not letting the work of their brand licensors go unnoticed. At the first of these appearances at Brand Licensing Europe 2010, the animation giant hosted a special event where they handed out three awards honoring companies that they have worked with in the past year with the most success. Winning for Best Licensing Program was Backstage Licensing of Italy for their work with Sailor Moon. Best Promotion went to TFI Enterprises of France for their work with all the Dragon Ball franchises, and Best Involvement went to Plus Licens of Sweden for their work with all the Dragon Ball franchises as well as One Piece. Kanji Kazahaya, President and COO of TAE was grateful, saying: "We are very delighted to start with this first edition of Toei Animation awards for our European brokers... as a Japanese company, it is a great time to share our motivation and challenges with our European partners." We are so happy to hear of Toei Animation's continued successes in Europe! Next, they appeared at Hyper Japan in London from October 1st-3rd, and exhibited their Toei Animation Theatre where for the first time in years Sailor Moon was shown officially in English! Not the dub though. The first episode was shown with English subtitles alongside the first episode of Pretty Cure and Yes! Pretty Cure 5 (also subtitled). We are officially jealous of our London readers who got to attend the screening! And if that wasn't enough, TAE also exhibited their properties at MIPCOM in Cannes, France from October 4th-8th. TAE did not exhibit at MIPJr. this year (a showcase just for childrens programming).
☾ Sailor Moon continues to leave everyone in her moondust in Italy! Backstage Licensing reports that Sailor Moon has peaks of viewers nearing the 1 million mark, and an average market share of around 9% (if the words "market share" confuse you, read our article from last week). What surprised us the most was reading about the girls' 4-14 demographic in Italy (preschoolers, young kids, and tweens) where the article said that Sailor Moon was maintaining a strong appeal with a share close to 40%! Once again, odango-atama/meatball head continues to defy industry expectations.Not bad for an "old show" that is proving to be a timeless classic. Everyeye Italy pointed to a new interview on the Metal Robot Forums with Carlo Cavazzoni, Executive Director of Dynit Italy, which will be releasing Sailor Moon on DVD. Here, is a translation of the Sailor Moon portion of the interview:
METALROBOT: The following questions discuss the issues of the series "Sailor Moon".
METALROBOT: The news of the acquisition of the home video rights for the series "Sailor Moon" has now been confirmed through Dynit's website. Why was a series like this chosen to be added to the Dynit Catalog?
Dynit: The brand was relaunched on an international level, and there are many companies involved in this project in Italy, Dynit Home Video has acquired the rights for the traditional channels (video stores, comics, etc ...). It is a series that has been very successful, and which we hope will conquer a new generation.
7. Was the aquisition of the rights for this series complicated? How did it happen that for a long time, years, the sale of the rights of the series for foreign countries was blocked?
Dynit: We do not know what the motivations were, it often depends on the rights situation in Japan. Sometimes, just to boost yourself up you need to disappear for a long time.
8. METALROBOT: Can you reveal a few more details in type? Will the releases cover all of the series and movies?
Dynit: It will cover the television series.
METALROBOT: Will the releases have a redub or will there only be the original dub with subtitles faithful to the original series?
Dynit: We did not expect to redub the series, we acquired the home video rights of the original dub. The series will be unedited in its entirety, we are now working with subtitles.
METALROBOT: When will the releases be listed for sale on the home video market?
Dynit: We plan to release them in early 2011, in singles and DVD boxsets.
Fans in Italy who were expecting a redub, it appears that there will not be one. We are most surprised reading that the movies will not be re-released with the series. If we remember correctly, the fans loved the movies just as much as the series?! Here is hoping that there will be some hope for releases of the movies in the future. We were irked by Cavazzoni's comment about disappearing just for attention - this really wasn't the case at all. This is almost like all the rumors we read about Yoshihiro Togashi only going on hiatus to get attention for Hunter X Hunter. We can understand feigning off interviewers for keeping the real reason for the rights disappearing under wraps, but to say something like this even in the independent press, is pretty low.