This month’s issue of Kadokawa Shoten’s Gundam Ace magazine announced that Yoshikazu Yasuhiko’s manga adaptation of the original Mobile Suit Gundam television series entitled Mobile Suit Gundam: The Origin would itself be adapted into animation.
Yasuhiko was a character designer and animation director on director Yoshiyuki Tomino’s 1979 Mobile Suit Gundam television series and has also worked on many other Gundam projects; his most recent contribution being character design work on the ongoing Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn OVA series.
The announcement does not mention whether this adaptation of The Origin manga will be a film, OVA, or television series, stating only that a ‘anime project’ has begun (much like how the new Berserk and Rurouni Kenshin ‘anime projects’ have recently been announced). This month’s issue of Gundam Ace also celebrated the 10th anniversary and final chapter of Yasuhiko’s The Origin manga.
This announcement comes just a few weeks after Bandai announced Mobile Suit Gundam AGE television series for children. This new project clearly seems geared towards older fans of the franchise and will hopefully be more warmly recieved than Gundam AGE’s announcement.
Personally, I feel as though The Origin will take form as a film series as Gundam AGE will be airing in October on television and Gundam Unicorn has a firm hold on the direct-to-video market.
Only time will tell though and I for one am looking forward to this new interpretation of Yoshiyuki Tomino’s masterpiece. Also, I would love to know if Tomino has anything to do with this new project, and if he doesn’t, how he feels about this new project.
A very sexy new trailer for the third episode of the Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn OVA series has been posted up on youtube. The end of the trailer announces that the third episode will be available to download on the Playstation Store on March 3rd and the Blu-ray/DVD release will be a month later on April 7th. The original release date for the home video release was to be March 18th but due to receiving a massive number of pre-orders for the upcoming episode, Sunrise decided to push back the release date to be able to respond better to the demand.
In other Gundam news, there seems to be some rumours circulating that a new television series will be announced sometime in the next several months.
It seems that Kylee, a singer who did theme songs for Studio Bones’ Xam’d: Lost Memories and Heroman is doing the theme song for the second episode of Sunrise’s Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn OVA series. Episode one was fantastic and I’m really looking forward to part 2. It can be picked up off of the Playstation Store on October 30th or you can order the Blu-ray release off of Amazon on November 12th.
The Oricon music and film listing in Japan has announced that Evangelion 2.22 sold 124,000 DVD’s and 195,000 Blu-ray disc’s on the first day of its release this past Tuesday. The previous number one selling anime Blu-ray was Kazuhiro Furuhashi’s Mobile Suit Gundam UC which sold 56,000 copies in its first week. Evangelion easily topped that number in only a single day. It also tops the previous record holder for first-day sales in general which was, strangely enough, Michael Jackson’s This is It which moved 122,000 BD’s on its first day of release. This is It is still the record holder for most number of disc’s sold overall with Evangelion 1.11 coming in a close second. I think it’s pretty clear that Evangelion 2.22 will go on to outsell This it It.
For a little bit of perspective on just how many copies Evangelion sold on its release day, 195,000 is several times more than many 13 episode late-night anime series sell during the entire run of the series. This is seriously a phenomenal number.
A few new advertisements have been released for Sunrise’s upcoming Gundam Unicorn OVA series. The first episode, ‘Day of the Unicorn’, will be available in Japan on the Playstation store on February 20th and the international release of the DVD/Blu-Ray will be on March 12th. It will be available on Amazon.com for a limited period of time. This sort of international release with a whole bunch of different subtitle languages is pretty much how I think most anime should be released…so I’m glad to see that Sunrise and Bandai are trying out this particular marketing plan with the popular Gundam franchise. Let’s hope it sells well. Meanwhile, Germany has announced that they will be releasing Evangelion 2.22 on Blu-Ray and DVD this summer….just a few months after it’s released in Japan. Where’s our stateside release? We are just now getting the ‘1.11’ director’s cut of the first movie on March 9th. Ridiculous!