Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Good News from ADV Films

We received some good news from ADV Films late this afternoon. Most of the February releases that had been put on hold have been rescheduled and will ship shortly.

Here is the list of rescheduled titles and dates. Please note that these dates are estimates and we will begin shipping these whenever they actually arrive:

Feb 26, 2008 (Note: due to intershipment time, we are scheduling these as Mar 4th)

Kanon, Vol #2 DVD
Kanon, Vol #2 DVD w/ Art Box
Kurau Phantom Memory, Vol #6, To Split Infinity DVD
Moonlight Mile, Vol #1, One Small Step DVD
Project Blue Earth SOS , Vol #1, Invasion! DVD
Pumpkin Scissors , Vol #3, Wounds of War DVD
Tokyo Majin , Vol #2, Dark Arts: Predestined Power DVD
Tokyo Majin , Vol #2, Dark Arts: Predestined Power DVD w Art Box
Wallflower , Vol #2, Lesson 2 Shrewring of the Timid DVD
Wallflower , Vol #2, Lesson 2 Shrewring of the Timid DVD w Art Box
Welcome to NHK , Vol #3, 3rd Conspiracy DVD

Mar 4, 2008

Five Centimeters Per Second DVD (Thank Goodness!)
Kanon, Vol #3 DVD
Ah! My Goddess TV Season 2, Vol #6 DVD
Red Garden , Vol #4 DVD

Mar 11, 2008

Project Blue Earth SOS , Vol #2, Infiltration DVD
Project Blue Earth SOS , Vol #2, Infiltration DVD w/ Art Box
Venus Versus Virus, Vol #3, Plague DVD

Mar 18, 2008

Moonlight Mile, Vol #2, A Gambler's Moon DVD
Moonlight Mile, Vol #2, A Gambler's Moon DVD w/ Art Box

I chatted briefly with Mike Baliff at ADV late this afternoon. There are a couple of things I want to point out regarding this announcement:

1) Many of these titles have actually been advanced on the schedule from their original dates. In fact, 'assuming' they have already been pressed, it's possible ADV might ship us all the titles on this most or all of this list all at once, or at least send us most of these titles in short order. It appears to me that ADV is anxious to close the books on their current open business and thus advanced the release date on many of these - possible based on what they already have in their warehouse. ADV has gone several weeks with severely reduced receivables, and by now the business must be absolutely starving for money, so they want to get as much shipped as quickly as possible in order to re-establish their receivables pipeline quickly.

2) Gurren Lagann and future volumes of Devil May Cry (after Vol #1) is not included in this list. Mike could not comment on the status of either, however, he did say that more announcements will be coming shortly.

3) All of the previously released titles that have been on backorder since mid-January will immediately begin shipping again. This will include Devil May Cry DVD #1.

4) The titles scheduled for 2/26 are supposed to be shipping to us today, so obviously they will not actually be streeting on 2/26 and we have set them up as 3/4 on the store site. They will be available as soon as they arrive here at our warehouse. I'm estimating we should see them by Friday of this week.

5) Other than Gurren Lagann, this update covers all the titles that were on the last published release spreadsheet provided to retailers by ADV. In fact, we ran off the end of that schedule this week as Red Garden 4 was the last line item which we were required to pre-book today. We currently have no information for any new releases beyond Red Garden 4. What this means is that this update from ADV covers all the DVD items that retailers had information on to offer for advanced sale to customers, and have already preordered from the company. This closes the books on whatever open orders they currently have (remember, fans are our customers - ADV's customers are retailers - so they handle their business based on retailer requirements). The next thing we need to see from ADV is a revised new release schedule covering previously unsolicited items after Red Garden 4.

So today's announcement solves most of the immediate problem of Feb/Mar new releases as well as all those backordered titles. We should begin getting shipping reports from ADV tomorrow for our stuff, so we will begin pre-processing all the booked backorders and the Feb 26 and Mar 4 preorders once we have that info. That way we can begin shipping these items to you guys the morning they hit the dock.

Hopefully we'll get some more info from ADV by weeks end regarding Gurren Lagann and what the plan is going forward out to April and May. If that happens, then by the end of next week this will all be a bad memory. Stay tuned.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Updates - February 22nd, 2008

Snow and Ice again - we had to close the warehouse again today (Friday 2/22) due to the winter storm that is moving through (nothing but ice and sleet in our area). Seems like well spend the month of February playing catchup from these weather events. We'll reopen and start shipping orders again first thing on Monday.

I suppose maybe we can use the extra time to get the stores front page updated... -_^

<---- Hey, what's Riki doing here? Eye candy man, eye candy!

We were very happy to discover this week that the Anime Corner Store was voted one of the top 25 most popular Anime sites on web in Active Anime's most recent poll! What's even better is that, since we had no idea we were even in the running, we did not actively try to send viewers over the the site to vote for us like other sites did, so our inclusion and placement on the list is strictly due to fans voting their conscience. In addition to the great ranking, the Active Anime staff also gave us this glowing review:

"Established in 1997 originally as a fan site, the Anime Corner quickly grew into one of the finest and largest online retailers of anime and manga related products. The Anime Corner Store® is now recognized worldwide as a leading, customer friendly, Anime retailer - a place that fans can obtain the latest Anime and Manga products at the most competitive prices, and still be backed up by the fastest delivery and best customer service in the industry."

Wow! I don't think I could have written it better myself. :-) Thanks to the folks at Active Anime for giving us the opportunity to be on the list this year, and for all you who voted for us!

Drumroll please... I have one date change for you this week. The release date for the upcoming Boys Be DVD boxed set has been moved back from Feb 26 to Mar 11. Looks like even the folks out in Iowa can't keep to their schedule these days. There are also a couple of March titles Media Blasters said they may have to ship late (due to their replicator), but we'll cross that bridge when we get there.

I was hoping to have an update for you on the status of ADV Films this week, but I do not. The situation is unchanged and we have heard nothing new out of Houston - which is in itself vexing to say the least. There was one interesting development though at the magazine division. Gary Steinman, the long time editor and chief of Newtype, and the man set to be the same for the PiQ publication, turned in his resignation last Friday and will be leaving the company. He's moving back to the Bay area, and while he said his departure was for 'personal reasons' (don't they always say that?) it was later revealed that he left ADV to take a new position at Playstation Official magazine. What this says about the future of PiQ magazine (or ADV Films) is anyone's guess, but Gary would be in a position to know more than we do about ADV's future prospects.

Last week I said we'd know the winner of the HD wars within the next 3 months, but it only took Toshiba about 3 minutes to run up the white flag on the HDDVD format after Walmart (we call the stores Wally World in these parts) chose to back BLURAY. So Sony's BLURAY is the official winner and Toshiba will stop manufacturing new HDDVD players in short order. But what does this mean for Anime you ask? Everything and not much. Everything in that now that there is a clear format winner, any studio hesitation to press titles in HD format can be set aside and we will probably start seeing more BLURAY Anime DVD releases as early as this spring. Not much in that the only Anime titles currently in release here in the US is Freedom, and Bandai Visual has already announced that they will complete the release of the series in the combo DVD / HDDVD format over the next few months. Kudos to them for not leaving existing viewers out in the cold half way through the release.

And because so many of you have been asking, we've created a subsection tab on the store where you can find all the current Anime titles in HD release. All eight of them. :-)

I'm very excited to hear that Funimation has licensed the Claymore anime. We've been waiting eagerly for that announcement, and I look forward to the release later this year. I'm also glad that it was acquired by a studio that is financially stable!

(Note: Now that's what I'm talkin about! Oh, and I LOVE Hoverphonic too...)
Bandai announced the release of Lucky Star this week, and we've already posted the first volumes for pre-order. It appears they are going to follow a similar release pattern as they did with Haruhi last year. Speaking of that, we'll also have Code Geass up for pre-order shortly. Also, it may interest you to know that Media Blasters has not renewed the license for Invader Zim, and the DVD's are now officially out of print. We still have a few of the boxed sets in stock for anyone that wants to pick one up before they are gone.

Despite the bad weather we managed to complete the shipping of all the Bandai replacement DVD's this week. Some customers have already received them and so far have reported that they play perfectly. Phew! We had done a few in house tests prior to sending them out, but you never know and I'm glad the new disks appear to be 100%. If you have not received your new disk(s) expect them to arrive shortly.

Another week has passed with no new shipments from ADV, so that left Funimation to fill the void with the arrival of Hell Girl, Vol #4 DVD, Mushishi, Vol #6 DVD, and the new

Viridian version of Galaxy Railways. Shuffle, Vol #1 DVD and the new DragonBall Z boxed set continue to sell extremely well and we have already had to go back to Funimation twice for more copies (no worries, we have plenty in stock). We also received the next volume of Simoun from Media Blasters and Naruto from Viz about 2 weeks ahead of their scheduled release dates.

Most of the latest manga arrivals came in from Viz and this weeks update features new volumes from my favorites Hayate the Combat Butler, Eiken, and of course Inubaka Crazy for Dogs which I can't get enough of even though it's more or less a girls title!

Finally we have a couple new figure arrivals which include the new Revoltech version of Rei Ayanami (which you can position just about any way you want) and the absolutely gorgeous (and huge) 1/6 scale Mai Shiranui. This is the most beautiful version of Mai I've ever seen, and not only is she almost 12" tall, she is sculpted perfectly and has everything going on in all the right places. :-) I know she's a bit pricey, but she's just too gorgeous to miss out on!

Have a great weekend, stay warm, and enjoy your Anime!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Giants 1 / ADV Films 0

I bet the high ups at ADV feel like the Patriots offensive line did tonight.


One industry insider told me this week that "the chances of ADV going under are about the same as the Giants winning the Super Bowl..."