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So the Tokyo Anime Fair began well for AbbyShot. Employees Julia and Mark (your friendly blogger) were nearly overwhelmed on the first day by the sheer size of the event, but soon got into the TAF groove. The story continues on Day 2. If you want to skip the tale and head straight for the amazing pictures, check out our AbbyShot Picasa Web Album!

Tokyo Anime Fair, Day Two: March 23, 2007

AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007We entered the second Business Day of the Tokyo Anime Fair and we were excited. All the information that left us nearly shell-shocked on Day One had now sunken in and we were ready to take on Japan! Next to AbbyShot, Godzilla was going to feel like someone’s pet newt. You could say we were hitting our stride.

Now is as good a time as any to introduce you to the full AbbyShot booth crew!

AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007On the far left, sporting a rugged AbbyShot Mad Max Jacket, was our good friend Gerard from the Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME) who are always an immense help to us. Gerard’s international experience also came in quite handy for humble Canadians (like myself) in Asia for the first time.

Next to him, looking divine in a fashionable AbbyShot Kill Bill jacket was Debbie, our consultant in Japan. She did a lot of research legwork for us before the show even started and helped us out in the booth for the first two days of the Fair.

Third from the left was of course Julia, looking great in an AbbyShot Stampede Duster. One of your two friends from AbbyShot here on this adventure!

Next was a new Japanese friend we made who was enjoying her time trying on an AbbyShot Malice Mizer coat. For some reason, this moment just screamed “group shot”, I don’t know.

Second-from-the-right was Andy, our translator, looking striking in an AbbyShot Lobby Trench. He was there for just one day, but did he ever help us break down the language barriers in our meetings with businesses and the public.

And on the end was me, Mark, your other trusty AbbyShot employee! I’m the one who gets to tell you this story.

Something very cool happened on this second day of the show.

The morning brought us a visit from a team of roving reporters that got a real kick out of our AbbyShot gear! They came from a Comcast channel called “Anime Selects” and it seemed like they were having a blast in Japan. Our friendly interviewer was Tasayu, trying on the AbbyShot Mad Max jacket next to Gerard in the picture on the left. The rest of the crew was loving their time in the AbbyShot booth as well, with cameraman Gabe turning in to Mad Max in the picture on the right while producer Megan snapped her own photos.

It was great to talk to this fun crowd of people – it was clear that they were having a great time at the Fair. Check out Tasayu’s Blog to see all the fun stuff the Anime Selects crowd did in Tokyo. Talk about using your time wisely! This AbbyShot interview is set to air in May, we’ll keep you posted on that one!

And it wasn’t just English-speaking reporters dying to get a piece of AbbyShot, we’ve also got our picture on a Brazilian news site! It really is an international show.

Day Two for me was all about exploring the Tokyo Anime Fair.

AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007Our excellent translator, Andy, was only with us for this one day, so we had to make the most of his skills. This was an incredible opportunity to speak with anime distributors, studios, and promotional firms to gather intelligence and see where AbbyShot can fit into the big picture.

The main lesson is: WOW, there’s a lot of anime that comes out every year! There were over 200 exhibitors promoting new or recent anime series or films, and each of these booths had 5 or 10 anime to promote (with some overlap because of partnerships) but STILL, there were hundreds and hundreds of new shows on display!

Some of the excellent highlights include:

- Velvet Underworld at the Wedge Holdings booth, a cool gothic anime as shown in this excellent Anime News Service scoop.

- Zombie Loan and Dragonaut at the ADK booth. The first is a funky high school zombie story and the second seems to be about cool-looking dragons in space.

- Night Head at the GAGA Communications booth, another gothic looking tale about psychic powers, based on an earlier anime from the 90’s.

- Darker than Black was making a splash at the ANIPLEX booth, with well-designed bags as handouts (because you need something to hold all the gear you collect!). Another sombre and brooding anime (as the name suggests), I definitely sense a trend here!

- Seirei no Moribito (or Guardian of the Sacred Spirit) from the Geneon booth was the coolest-looking warrior themed anime that we saw at the show, and trust me, there were quite a few of these!

- Finally, a BIG highlight from the show: a Devil May Cry anime TV series is coming! The huge Dante poster at the Toshiba booth was certainly hard to miss!

AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007What about the odd, funny, or downright weird highlights? We’ve got some of those:

- Hayate the Combat Butler at the Geneon booth. The name says it all.

- Tachiguishi Retsuden or The Amazing Lives of the Fast Food Grifters. I can’t begin to tell you what this one’s about.

- Finally, it’s Getsumento Heiki Mina or Lunar Rabbit Weapon Mina. She’s a bunny-girl with two carrots stuck to the back of her. I’ll never understand some of this stuff.

So much fun new anime, but of course we had to walk by the greats – click for bigger views of the cool booth designs!

AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007 AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007 AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007
This last business day gave us lots of great insight into the Japanese anime industry, but the clothing at the AbbyShot booth still gots lots of amazing response from the attendees! Our translator Andy became our own Japanese-speaking AbbyShot salesman as you can see below.
AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007 AbbyShot at the Tokyo Anime Fair 2007
We made lots of great business contacts on this second day, including our first meeting with costume retailer CANDY ONE who we’ll certainly be talking about a lot more in the coming weeks! As we happily finished up this last Business Day of the Fair, we didn’t quite know what we were in for with Day Three: the first PUBLIC DAY! When the gates open and fans come screaming in!

Lots more to come in the next AbbyShot in Japan blog post!

Did you hear of any great upcoming anime that we should know about, that we might have missed? Let us know in the comments!

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