movies

Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection ‘F’ TV ad released, includes Jaco!

It won’t be much longer now until the newest Dragon Ball film, Resurrection ‘F,’ opens in theaters across Japan on April 18. That means it’s high time for the advertising to begin. On March 24 the first TV spot aired, giving us a glimpse of what’s to come and a little more fighting and characters than shown in the previous trailer. You can see for yourself in the video below, but rest assured that it’s chock-full of all the tea sipping and long discussions about the feelings that the series is famous for.

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“Are you satisfied with your spinning pile driver?” Fan inserts Baymax into Street Fighter IV

As events unfold in Disney’s Big Hero 6, teenage genius Hiro finds himself and caretaker robot Baymax getting into increasingly dangerous situations. Recognizing their increased need to be able to defend themselves, Hiro takes it upon himself to develop new combat software for Baymax and train him in how to use it, turning him into a karate master.

Given Baymax’s considerable size and girth, though, we’re not sure karate allows him to make full use of his brute strength. Wrestling might be a better discipline for him, as demonstrated in this Ultra Street Fighter IV video starring the huggable Baymax unleashing a string of spinning pile drivers on Big Hero 6 costar GoGo.

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Everybody back in the pool! Swimming anime Free! getting theatrical prequel this year

Certain sports seem like obvious choices for an anime series. Baseball, for example, has a team-first atmosphere that meshes with Japan’s cultural value of putting the group before the self, and has enough breaks in the action for lengthy conversations between characters on the same team. Boxing, being all about two dudes trying to punch each other into submission while taking a breather every three minutes in which the focus can shift to the hero’s internal monologue, also makes for an easy translation to dramatic animation.

Swimming, on the other hand, seems like a hard fit, as the athletes’ actions are fundamentally repetitive, and being underwater precludes any snappy dialogue. But what the sport does have going for it is slim, toned, almost naked competitors, and anime studio Kyoto Animation has ridden the fangirl fever-inducing cast of swimming saga Free! to critical and commercial success. Next up for the franchise: a brand-new theatrical feature that’s scheduled to be released before the end of the year.

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First trailer for the live-action Attack on Titan movie just as smokin’ as the Colossal Titan

It’s been months since we’ve heard anything about the Attack on Titan live-action remake. Last we saw, the movie posters were just coming out, and they mostly just left us hungry for more.

But finally the first trailer for the movie has been released! There were some titanic expectations going into it, and so far the response has been… well, you can watch it and decide for yourself!

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Test your Ghibli knowledge: Can you identify the films by these minimalist fan-made posters?

Last month we saw one artist’s interpretation of Studio Ghibli films as super-detailed movie posters. This month though we’re feeling a bit more minimalist, so we want to showcase the work of artist Jackman Chiu. His simple yet impactful poster designs of the Ghibli movies are eye-catching, mysterious, and best of all make for a really good game of Guess That Ghibli Film!

So put on your Ghibli fanboy/fangirl hats and get ready to tally some points and see how many minimalist movie posters you can match with the correct title!

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Just say no! Five anime that fans hope never get live-action remakes

While they haven’ quite reached the same level of ubiquity as American comic book adaptations, more and more anime are being turned into live-action movies recently. Over the last year or so, we’ve seen the release or announcement of such projects for Ruroni Kenshin, Lupin III, Tokyo Tribe, and Attack on Titan.

But while having an existing fanbase and the broad strokes of the plot already in place make an anime adaptation attractive to producers, not all fans of a series are particularly pleased at the prospect of seeing real actors and actresses stepping into the anime shoes of their favorite heroes and heroines. Japanese website Nico Nico News recently asked 500 adult men and women which anime they hope never get the live-action treatment, and here are their top five responses.

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R2-D2 is ready to chill with your groceries as a cool talking Star Wars fridge droid 【Video】

It’s kind of sad to think that with the Sapporo Snow Festival over, the event’s awesome Star Wars snow sculpture is demolished and melted. Thankfully, if you’re still feeling the icy allure of epic science fiction and low temperatures, there’s another way to combine the two, and this time in the home, with your very own R2-D2 fridge droid!

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Godzilla appears in the Tokyo skyline atop new Shinjuku skyscraper! 【Photos】

Each neighborhood of Tokyo has its own unique feel, but it’s hard to top Shinjuku. Located in the heart of downtown, Shinjuku has just about everything you could ask for in a modern metropolis, boasting such attractions as a beautiful garden, extensive shopping options, an uncountable array of restaurants and bars, and the RocketNews24 offices.

And now, there’s one more reason to come to Shinjuku. A big one in fact, as the King of the Monsters, Godzilla himself, is literally watching over the district in the form of a life-size replica of the creature’s head peering down from one of its skyscrapers.

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Ditch the Batcave and book yourself a night at this Batman hotel room in Taiwan

Isn’t it a little weird that Batman spends so much time in a Batcave? After all, by night he may be fighting crime as the Caped Crusader, but deep down inside, he’s still multi-millionaire Bruce Wayne (ummm…spoiler for the unsuspecting citizens of Gotham who didn’t know that about their local captain of industry).

Wealthy enough to be used to the finer things in life, we imagine that at the very least, he wants more luxuriously appointed accommodations when he travels. Thankfully, the next time Wayne Enterprises has business to attend to in Taiwan, their dashing young CEO can have his assistant book him a night in this Batman hotel room.

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“Hideously tacky”? Japan’s poster for Academy Award-winning movie Birdman raises eyebrows online

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) won Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best Cinematography at the 87th Academy Awards this year. Ever since the awards ceremony, everyone has been talking about the movie, but it hasn’t even been released in Japan yet. That fateful day is April 10, 2015. With a release date that is (as per usual) months behind most other countries, it allows for some time to adjust the advertising campaigns.

Bu the Japanese poster for Birdman is…well…we’ll let you decide.

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Artist’s new posters for classic movies will inspire you to watch them all over again

Making movie posters is tough. You not only have to catch the eye of people passing by, but also get them excited and inform them on what the movie is about, all at the same time. When a poster is done well, it can be just as memorable as the movie itself. And when it’s done badly, well, it can be memorable in a different kind of way.

Artist Olly Moss however, whom we’ve met before with his amazing video game-inspired ceramic plates, is a master of the poster medium. He’s recently been picked up by Japanese websites for creating new posters of classic movies, including Studio Ghibli films. Get ready: your nostalgia meter is about to be cranked up to 10, and you’re going to go hunting through your old DVDs very soon.

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Celebrate the start of the new Pirates movie with “Asian Johnny Depp” and a skull drink!

The newest Pirates of the Caribbean movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, has begun principal photography in Australia, so the production team released its very first still from the set–something that is bound to fire up all the pirate fans and Johnny Depp fans around the world. A return of Captain Jack Sparrow is as exciting as, “yo ho ho, and a bottle of rum.”

After the cast and crew, the person most excited by the news is probably RocketNews24’s own Go Hatori, AKA Asian Johnny Depp! He’s back to toast the new movie with a costume and a special drink in the form of a human head analogue. Because… Well at least we kept him off the streets.

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Hayao Miyazaki has a bone to pick with consumerism and computers (but mostly consumerism)

Anime legend Hayao Miyazaki recently offered his take on French publication Charlie Hebdo running illustrations of Muhammad. That wasn’t the only strong opinion the Studio Ghibli co-founder put forth though. Aside from having harsh words for using others’ culture as fodder for satire, he’s also got a pretty big bone to pick with computer animation and consumerism.

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Transgender Thai actress called “too pretty” and “wonderful;” maybe world not so bad after all

It’s really nice that we live in a world where a transgender woman uploading pictures of herself onto social media results in comments like “oh my god you’re so pretty!” and “I love your dress!” instead of slurs and hate.

Most recently, Thai transgender sensation Nong Poy uploaded a picture onto her social media that some followers thought made her look exactly like Chinese model/actress/singer Aneglababy. In all honesty though, this author doesn’t really care who she looks like; she’s already plenty awesome just looking like no one else but herself.

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Still no hoverboards, but 2015 has now given us this cool Back to the Future Delorean iPhone case

Now that 2015 is upon us, futurists and move fans alike are up in arms about all the cool things Back to the Future II promised we’d have by now, but still don’t. Where are our self-lacing shoes, they ask? When can we except to be devoured by holographic advertisements, huh? And what in God’s name is the holdup with the hoverboards?

What all these complaints fail to recognize, though, is all of the other amazing stuff that’s become part of our daily lives. For example, not only do we have the Internet and all the wondrous knowledge it provides, but we can access it from our mobile phones! That’s something even Back to the Future II couldn’t imagine, which is why it’s taken until the real 2015 for someone to make these sweet iPhone cases modeled after the film’s iconic Delorean time machine.

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As Keanu Reeves sightings continue in Tokyo, we ask: Got time for a bowl of your favorite ramen?

I’ve always felt a certain bond with Keanu Reeves, seeing how we’re both graduates of San Dimas High School (me in real life, and him through his portrayal of Theodore “Ted” Logan in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure). So I was a little bummed when the Hollywood actor came to Tokyo but didn’t call me up to hang out with him in Akihabara.

I’ve got to say, my feelings are now even more hurt, since this new batch of photos of the good-natured Reeves posing with fans in Japan makes it seem like the RocketNews24 staff are the only people the actor hasn’t spent time with during his visit, despite the fact that we’d be more than happy to hook him up with a meal at his favorite ramen restaurant, which has a chain right by our office.

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Yakuza-Vampire movie, Yakuza Apocalypse, release date set

Takashi Miike’s long-awaited film Yakuza Apocalypse (Gokudou Daisensou) has been given a release date of 20 June. The movie follows a yakuza who bites other people and turns them into yakuza…or vampires. We’re not really sure which, and maybe neither is the film itself, but it looks pretty cool.

The cast line-up has also been announced including Hayato Ichihara (Rainbow Song, God’s Puzzle), Riko Narumi (The Great Yokai War, Ikigami), and someone in a bright-green frog suit.

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Ghibli producer reveals the studio’s current anime production project: absolutely nothing

Since last summer, producer Toshio Suzuki has been dropping hints that Studio Ghibli, the animation house he co-founded along with legendary director Hayao Miyazaki, might be restructuring. While the cagey veteran has avoided saying that Ghibli would be shutting down, he’s made several oblique references to “dismantling” its standing production team and taking a hiatus from creating feature films.

Still, the true Ghibli faithful have been holding out hope, clinging to the belief that it’s not over until the fat baby from Spirited Away sings. Hearing some of Suzuki’s recent remarks, though, it sounds like it’s going to be a very long wait until the next Ghibli film, as he described the production team’s current project as absolutely nothing.

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Akira creator Katsuhiro Otomo’s sprawling mural will soon welcome travelers at Sendai Airport

Surely any list of Japan’s greatest animators and directors must include Katsuhiro Otomo, the man behind the likes of Akira, Domu, and Steamboy. Otomo’s distinctive mix of neo-futurism, cyberpunk, and dark humor has earned him both a legion of fans and numerous accolades throughout the world.

We mentioned in a previous article that Otomo would be designing a giant mural for Tohoku’s Sendai Airport. Now it looks like the wait is almost over. The 12-ton mural, which depicts a squat, bespectacled boy sitting astride a cybernetic carp flanked by the gods of wind and lightning, will be unveiled on March 12, one day after the fourth anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake.

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Australia’s Animal Logic Entertainment announces plans for live-action Astro Boy film

Live-action comic book movies are a big deal these days, with four of the 10 highest-grossing films in the U.S. hailing from that category in 2014. All four of those are Marvel properties, though, and while American rival DC Comics has found sporadic movie success in the past, Western adaptations of Japanese manga haven’t even fared that well.

Still, it looks like one studio is getting ready to roll the dice again, and the dice don’t get much bigger than Japan’s most exalted manga of all, as Australia’s Animal Logic Entertainment has announced its plans for an Astro Boy live-action movie.

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