By Jason S. Yadao
My Wednesday night/early Thursday morning in a nutshell:
- Went to see From Up on Poppy Hill at the Kahala 8 complex. I give it three thumbs up because newspapers play a fairly big role in the movie, and YAY NEWSPAPERS. Also, it's a great 1960s-era Japan period piece, Goro Miyazaki actually has a good story to wrap around the lingering shots of pretty scenery this time, and I really want to see it with its original Japanese soundtrack now. But YAY NEWSPAPERS.
- Ate dinner afterward at a fairly large national chain restaurant with a large hot pepper as its logo. Checked email. Nearly choked on bite of yummy Chocolate Chip Paradise Pie upon learning that fairly major news had broken while I was watching Umi and Shun running around trying to save their school's run-down clubhouse.
- Dashed home, fired up computer, ripped out original Cel Shaded Report topic for this week and began working on this post.
What made me stay up into the wee hours of the morning: Oni-Con Hawaii, the new anime/manga/Japanese pop culture convention in town, finally revealed the dates and location for its first show. And for those of you who have developed your own sets of survival tips during Kawaii Kon weekend, get ready to put those into practice once again: Oni-Con's heading to the Hawai'i Convention Center Nov. 1-3.
The announcement ends a wait of about 1-1/2 months for that information ever since the convention first announced its existence in mid-February. Some -- your friendly neighborhood anime/manga blogger admittedly included -- might even say that the teaser period lasted too long and started drifting into "well, are you guys really going to be able to pull something together this year?" territory. Having an announcement posted on the Facebook page about those details "coming shortly" on Feb. 27, then again promising those details "within the next week" on March 27 and then not saying anything until two weeks later, has a way of raising suspicions a bit. But the past is the past, and hopefully things will be a bit smoother going forward.
A few other notes on what I know about Oni-Con, some repeats from before, other bits new:
- Currently confirmed as appearing at the inaugural show are Atelier Pierrot designer Yuko Ashizawa, Yu x Me Maid Cafe & Host Club (which announced this week that it would be hosting an Amnesia/Alice in Wonderland-themed event) and the Cosplay Chess Brigade.
- Three-day passes are currently available at oniconhawaii.com/registration.html at the introductory rate of $35. No telling at this point how long that's going to last, so you may want to get on that right away. Unfortunately for those of you who preregistered for HEXXP, you're going to have to preregister and pay again, then pursue a refund of your HEXXP payment through other venues, as this post details.
- Volunteers interested in ... umm ... volunteering can email email@example.com. Also still in a holding pattern is the cost for, and number of, Artist Alley tables that will be available.
More news undoubtedly to come in the next few weeks. As a friend of mine is fond of saying, things are about to get pretty interesting.
'Poppy Hill' extended a week
More now on Poppy Hill, the newest Studio Ghibli film localized for the U.S.: The latest weekly movie time update from Fandango has arrived. For those of you who for whatever reason couldn't make it to the first week's worth of screenings at the Kahala 8 complex, you're in luck: It'll be showing for another week, at least. There are a few minor adjustments in screening times, but the number of screenings between Friday and next Thursday remains the same, at 33. Tickets are available online via Fandango. Here are those times:
Friday and Saturday: 10:40 a.m. and 12:50, 3, 5:10, 7:20 and 9:40 p.m.
Sunday: 10:40 a.m. and 12:50, 3, 5:10 and 7:20 p.m.
Monday through Thursday: 12:45, 3, 5:10 and 7:20 p.m.
"Journey of Heroes" graphic novel: If you have yet to pick up this this manga-style book chronicling the achievements of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team/100th Infantry Battalion in World War II -- and you really should get it; author Stacey Hayashi and artist Damon Wong did a great job with it -- it's available for sale at the Bishop Museum gift shop. It's a tie-in with the exhibit "American Heroes: Japanese American WWII Nisei Soldiers and the Congressional Gold Medal."
Over at the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii gift shop (2454 S. Beretania St.), you can also get the book ($10 general, $9 JCCH members), some spiffy exclusive "Chibi Wear" aloha shirts for men and women ($75, $67.50 JCCH members) or, for you DIYers, pre-cut yards (36 inches by 44 inches) of any of the three available fabric styles ($20 per yard, $18 JCCH members). Bishop Museum exhibit on display through April 17.
Anime Manga Society at UH-Manoa: Meets every Thursday and Friday in Kuykendall Hall, room 305. Catch Cyborg 009, Kuroko no Basket and Hanasaku Iroha on Thursdays, or Magi, Psycho Pass and Toriko on Fridays. Social time/announcements 4:30 p.m.: screenings 5 to 7 p.m.
Aiea Library Anime Club: Because attendees asked for it, librarian Diane Masaki is screening even more episodes of Black Butler this month at the library, 99-143 Moanalua Road. For more information or to RSVP, call 483-7333 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. 3 p.m. Saturday.
Manga character design workshop: Learn the basics of human anatomy and character design (and how to break those rules to develop your own style) from Tara Tamayori, the artist whose two-chapter story "Eternal Blade" is featured in the Hachi Maru Hachi anthology. Workshops will be held at the Honolulu Museum of Art School (1111 Victoria St., room 200) Cost: $15, payable to the instructor at the beginning of each session. Designed for ages 12 and up. Email email@example.com or call the art school at 532-8741 if you're still interested. 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.
MangaBento: This group of anime- and manga-inspired artists usually meets every second and fourth Sunday of the month at the Honolulu Museum of Art School (1111 Victoria St.). "But wait," you say. "Isn't Tara's workshop on the same day? Doesn't MangaBento usually meet in Room 200? Where are they going to go?!?" Simple ... they'll be in Room 101. Art for everyone, yay! Visit www.manga-bento.com. Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.
Monster Drawing Workshop: With April being the month to learn how to design your own manga characters (courtesy of Tara) and how to add manga faces to them (courtesy of MangaBento), perhaps you'd like to learn how to create your own monsters to harass your manga creations (or befriend them, because hey, it's your story)? Comic Jam Hawaii has you covered in this free workshop at Aiea Library. Paper, pencils and crayons will be provided, or bring your own art supplies if you wish. Recommended for ages 8 and older. 1 to 3:30 p.m. April 27.
Other future attractions
Free Comic Book Day: The name pretty much says it all. Of course, there will probably be other things going on as well. May 4.
Maui Matsuri Festival: Annual Japanese festival held on the University of Hawaii-Maui College campus. May 11.
Tomo-E-Ame: Friends-Drawings-Candy: MangaBento's annual exhibit at the Honolulu Museum of Art School. June 16-July 14.
Taku Taku Matsuri: A summer festival with an anime/manga slant at Hawaii Kotohira Jinsha-Hawaii Dazaifu Tenmangu. Aug. 25.
Kawaii Kon 2014: Guests include voice actors Michael Sinterniklaas and Stephanie Sheh. Hawai'i Convention Center, April 4-6, 2014.