Samurai Champloo is a Japanese animated T.V. series consisting of twenty-six episodes. It was broadcast in Japan from May 20, 2004 through March 19, 2005 on the television network, Fuji TV. Samurai Champloo was created and directed by Shinichirō Watanabe, whose previous television show, Cowboy Bebop, earned him renown in the anime and Japanese television communities. The show was produced by studio Manglobe.
The word, champloo, comes from the Okinawan word "chanpurū" (as in gōyā chanpurū, the Okinawan stir-fry dish containing bitter melon). Chanpurū, alone, simply means "to mix" or "to hash." Therefore, the title, Samurai Champloo, may be translated to "Samurai Remix" or "Samurai Mashup."
The series is a cross-genre work of media, blending the action and samurai genres with elements of non-slapstick comedy. It is also a period piece, taking place during Japan's Edo period. The series is interwoven with revisionist historical facts and anachronistic elements of mise-en-scene, dialogue and soundtrack. The shows most frequent anachronism is its use of elements of hip hop culture, particularly rap and the music it has influenced, break dancing, turntablism, hip hop slang, and graffiti. The show also contains anachronistic elements from the punk subculture and modernism, but less prominently.
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Wolf's Rain is an japanese animation series created by writer and story editor Keiko Nobumoto and produced by BONES Studio. The series was directed by Tensai Okamura and featured character designs by Toshiro Kawamoto with a soundtrack produced and arranged by Yoko Kanno. It focuses on the journey of four lone wolves who cross paths while following the scent of the Lunar Flowers. They form a pack and decide to seek out the Flower Maiden in order to open the way to Paradise. Along the way, they must avoid a fanatical wolf hunter and the nobles who wish to use the Flower Maiden to create their own Paradise.
The anime series was well received in Japan, being the third ranked anime series in its time slot while airing on Fuji TV. The Bandai Entertainment English language release sold well in North America. It helped Bandai gain the 2004 Anime Company of the Year award from industry news company ICv2 in the ICv2 Retailers Guide to Anime/Manga. The manga adaptation was selected as one of their top ten anime products of 2005 and sold well in North America. Reviewers of the series gave it high marks for characterization, visual presentation, and its soundtrack, while disparaging the existence of four recapitulation episodes in the middle of the series. The manga adaptation also sold well in North America and received good reviews, though reviewers felt its short length resulted in a rushed plot and neglected supporting characters.
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The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is the name of the 2006 television anime about a girl who, unknown to her, possesses the power to change reality. The story is based on the series of novels, the first of the same name. The anime adaptation, directed by Tatsuya Ishihara and produced by Kyoto Animation, shares the first novel's plotline, contained in six self-contained episodes. Intermingled between them were seven episodes based on chapters from the second, third, fifth, and sixth novels. The ninth episode, "Someday in the Rain", was a new totally story written for the anime by Nagaru Tanigawa, the author of the novels. The fourteen episode series premiered in Japan on April 2, 2006 and aired until July 2, 2006. Notably, these episodes were not originally broadcast in chronological order.
Soon after the show aired, Kadokawa Shoten received offers from companies in regards to licensing the anime, manga, and novels. On December 22, 2006, the website asosbrigade.com revealed that the anime version of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya was licensed for North American distribution by Kadokawa Pictures USA, who sublicensed production and distribution to Bandai Entertainment. The first and second DVDs were released on May 29, 2007 and July 3, 2007, respectively, with the third and fourth on September 25, 2007 and November 6, 2007.
The series was extremely popular and has become a cult television series with a large and dedicated fanbase. As of December 2006, The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya is the most popular anime in Japan according to Newtype magazine. Similar to Star Trek's fans as Trekkies, fans of the series call themselves "Haruhiists", and the collective fandom is known as Haruhiism.
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Eureka Seven, known in Japan as Psalms of Planets Eureka Seven, is a mecha anime TV series by Bones. Eureka Seven tells the story of Renton Thurston and the outlaw group Gekkostate, his relationship with the enigmatic mecha pilot Eureka, and the mystery of the Coralians. Bandai produced three video games based on Eureka Seven; two of them are based on events prior to the show, while the third is based on the first half of the show. Both the original concept of the anime and the video game Eureka Seven vol.1: New Wave have been adapted into manga series, as well. The TV series has also been adapted into a series of four novels in Japan.
A movie based on the series was announced in the May issue of Newtype. The creators announced it will contain a new mythos, despite still featuring Renton and Eureka as the main characters. It will be produced by Kinema Citrus.
The series' origins can be traced to a pitch of a mecha anime series that Bandai had proposed to the animation studio Bones. At first, the studio rejected it, but later reversed its position because it had already planned to create an anime using mecha designs by Shoji Kawamori. With the appointment of director Tomoki Kyoda and writer Dai Satō, Bandai's proposal was more or less scrapped and the staff began work on their own series that would become Eureka Seven.
While conceptualizing Eureka Seven, director Tomoki Kyoda wished to design the series as one that would at first focus on the personal elements and conflicts of the characters, then subsequently move the framework into a broader scale and perspective. The series' two halves each have their own very clear focus that reflects this design choice. The series was Tomoki Kyoda's first as chief director for a TV anime; his major credits to date before that were his position as Assistant director of the RahXephon TV series and subsequent position of Director for the movie adaption, also from studio Bones. RahXephon creator and director Yutaka Izubuchi provided additional design works for Eureka Seven, as well.
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