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    Anime News of the Week (12/23 - 12/29)

40 Years and Still Strong

Merchandise company Sanrio has released a promotional video that details the progression of the Hello Kitty franchise over the course of forty years. Hello Kitty first premiered in 1974. Since then, the mascot has raked in an estimated 4 billion dollars per year.

Sailor Scouts, Unite!

A Sailor Moon reunion! Anime Expo 2014 has confirmed that Linda Ballantyne (Moon), Stephanie Morgenstern (Venus), Katie Griffin (Mars), Karen Bernstein (Mercury) and Susan Roman (Jupiter) will all be guests at the show. Anime Expo runs July 3-6.

The Holy Grail War Returns

Anime studio ufotable has been teasing the idea of a re-adaptation of the series Fate/stay night. This has been officially confirmed with the release of a trailer recapping events of the prequel Fate/Zero and a reintroduction of the Fate/stay night cast.

Class Is Back In Session

A trailer at Comiket 85 has announced the first official sequel to the popular anime Soul Eater, which ended in 2009. Soul Eater Not! is based on the shoujo spinoff manga that tells a prequel through the eyes of new transfer student, the halberd weapon Tsugumi Harudori, and her two meisters Anya Hepburn and Meme Tatana.

The Guild is Back

Director Shinji Ishihara has announced the awaited return of the anime Fairy Tail. The series officially went off the air on March 30 this year. Ishihara noted the reasoning was a much needed change in staff, including the aid of Studio Bridge and the hiring of character designer Shinji Takeuchi. The series makes an official comeback in April. Link

Shonen Meets Smash Bros.

The highly anticipated video game J-Stars Victory Vs. has released its first official trailer, detailing its impressive roster. The fighting game boasts over 45 years of manga history, as told by legendary magazine Shonen Jump. The game will be released on PS3 and Vita March 19.

A Warrior’s Rest

In other Shonen Jump news, the manga Toriko has begun a one-month hiatus after completing the Human World arc. Creator Mitsutoshi Shimabukuro assured fans that the manga would return on February 2 with the 28th Volume and a start to the Gourmet World Arc. Link

Latest Anime Kickstarter Success

The Kickstarter campaign for the film Santa Company has been funded with eleven days to spare. Kenji Itoso is directing the film, described as a Christmas tale explaining how a team of upstart apprentices handles a one-man job. While not a large name in the industry, Itoso has previously worked under Hayao Miyazaki and Satoshi Kon. The film will be released December 2014. Link

The Return of The Magic Kingdom

Long-running series Kingdom Hearts is receiving a new remix edition, which should arrive stateside in 2014 on the PS3. Kingdom Hearts 2.5 Remix will include the HD rerelease of Kingdom Hearts II, the port of the PSP title Kingdom Hearts Birth: Sleep Final Mix and the DS port of Kingdom Heart Re:coded.

Get a Killer Soundtrack

Aniplex USA, in association with composer Hiroyuki Sawano, has begun selling the official Kill la Kill soundtrack. The album, which is currently $30 through online retailer Right Stuf, will ship out on January 7. Below is a trailer previewing of the album.

The King of Gunpla Is Crowned

The hobby of gunpla, or construction of model mecha, is a serious art form that has yearly competitions. This year, the Builder’s World Cup crowned Japan’s Shunpei Yamauchi and his modified "RX-93 Ver.Ka Gundam" as Best in Show. Meanwhile, the Junior division named Hong Kong’s Choy Chi Kit and his "Forgotten Red Comet" the Second Place overall. Link

Miku Made From Bricks

Japanese LEGO master Moko has a general reputation in his trade for creating classic mecha for conventions and displays. In collaboration with the Hatsune Miku YouTube channel, he steps outside his comfort zone, creating a video of the virtual idol being built from scratch, as well as a one of a kind mini-fig of the star.

Anime Premieres

  • Hunter x Hunter: The Last Mission Movie
  • Pupipo!
  • Zetsumetsu Kigu Shoujo Amazing Twins

Anime Releases

  • Say, "I Love You" - Complete Collection DVD/Blu-Ray (English)
  • Wolf Children - Film DVD/Blu-Ray (UK Release)
  • Humanity Has Declined - Complete Collection DVD/Blu-Ray (Japanese)

Manga Releases

  • Neon Genesis Evangelion: The Shinji Ikari Rising Project Volume 13
  • Crimson Empire: Circumstances to Serve a Noble Volume 3

Video Games Releases

  • Gaiabreaker (WiiU) (USA/EU/AUS)
  • Satsujin Mystery: Kirisaki Jack (3DS) (JPN)

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