Press Releases

May 22, 2008

News for AnimeNEXT 2008:

AnimeNEXT 2008 announces guests and Death Note screening

Limited Engagement Screening to Take Over New Jersey Convention

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - May 22, 2008 - Universal Animation, Inc., the parent company of New York City's largest non-profit anime convention, in conjunction with Viz Pictures is pleased to announce that it will host a free screening of the first live-action Death Note movie during its convention from June 20 to June 22, 2008.

"We're very happy that Viz chose to work with us to bring a free screening to anime fans in the tri-state area," said AnimeNEXT 2008 convention chairman Carlo Darcelin. "The fact that it's the Death Note movie is just icing on the cake."

The live-action version of the popular manga and anime series was recently screened in a limited theatrical release across the United States, starting May 20. Of the screenings, Viz Pictures president and CEO Seiji Horibuchi said, "Death Note is a riveting and critically acclaimed drama that we are thrilled to bring to fans across the country."

Death Note stars Tatuya Fujiwara as Light Yagami, a Japanese university student who discovers a mysterious notebook and instructions that state that if he writes down the name of a human inside the book, that person will die. Yagami takes it upon himself to start ridding the world of criminals, and it's up to the world's greatest detective L (Ken'ichi Matsuyama) to stop his killing spree. The movie will be screened only once during the convention, and will be dubbed, featuring the voices of Brad Swaile as Light, convention guest Brian Drummond as the death-god Ryuk, and Battlestar Galactica's Alessandro Juliani as L.

To find out more about the cast, story, and to view an English-dubbed teaser for the film, visit the Death Note website at:

Canadian Actors Brian Drummond and Adrian Drummond Make Voice Over Work a Family Affair

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - May 22, 2008 - Universal Animation, Inc. is very pleased to announce that voice actors Brian Drummond and his son Adrian will be making their first-ever joint appearance at AnimeNEXT 2008.

Brian Drummond has a long resume in the English voice acting scene, voicing some of anime's most notable roles, including Vegeta from Dragon Ball Z, Zechs Marquise from Gundam Wing, Andrew Walfield from both Gundam Seed and Gundam Seed Destiny, and Allen Schezar from the Escaflowne TV series and Vision of Escaflowne movie. He has also voiced roles in Transformers, Soul Taker, and Zoids Fuzors. But perhaps Drummond's most "note-able" role this year has been lending his voice to the Ryuk, the shinigami who started it all in the Death Note live action movie. The talent runs in the Drummond family, as his son Aidan is an up-and-coming voice actor who's been featured in Ballistic: Ecks vs. Sever and the fourth Inuyasha movie as Shion.

"It will be a pleasure of mine to host these two actors," said AnimeNEXT director of guest relations Conor Mooney. "Both Brian and Adrian represent the past and the future of voice-over acting, and it will be interesting to hear what they have to say about the North American anime industry from a Canadian perspective."

Both father and son will be appearing for all three days of AnimeNEXT to speak about their careers in voice acting and greet their fans

ADR Scriptwriter and Voice Actress Leah Clark Bears Sasami and Surprises to her New Jersey Debut

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - May 22, 2008 - Universal Animation, Inc. announced today that Texas voice actor and ADR scriptwriter Leah Clark will join the roster of invited guests to this year's AnimeNEXT from June 20 to June 23. In addition to conducting panels on the production side of the North American anime industry, Clark will also be previewing some footage from Sasami: Magical Girl Club, the Tenchi-Muyo spinoff series by AIC.

Clark's voice acting resume includes the voices for Nodoka Miyazaki in Negima! and Akane Suzumiya in Rumble Hearts and the lead role of Suzuka Asahina in Suzuka. She has also brought life to characters in the One Piece, Full Metal Alchemist, xxxHolic and the Tsubasa Chronicles movies. On the production side, Clark's work includes both scriptwriting and directing duties for Sasami as well as the English-language script for Peach Girl and FUNimation's production of One Piece.

"The guest list for AnimeNEXT has always included talented and unique individuals who well-versed in the anime world," said director of publicity Trisha L. Sebastian. "Leah Clark is such an individual and we're pleased that she accepted our invitation."

For more information about Leah Clark, you can visit her MySpace page at:


NEW YORK, NEW YORK - May 22, 2008 - Universal Animation, Inc. and Jhouse-Rock ENT are pleased to announce that powerhouse band Rentrer En Soi will be performing live in concert at the AnimeNEXT 2008, from June 20 to June 22. The dramatic, five-person band has been busy touring and playing to sold out audiences throughout Japan, and they're coming back to the U.S. for their East Coast concert premiere at AnimeNEXT on the Friday night of the convention. The next day, all five band members will participate in a Q & A session and later on, there will be a signing and photo session, sponsored generously by Jhouse-Rock ENT.

To find out more about the Jhouse-Rock ENT exclusive promotions at AnimeNEXT, you can visit their website at (Note: Universal Animation, Inc. is not responsible for content that is not hosted on the domain.)

About VIZ Pictures, Inc.
Based in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Pictures, Inc. distributes Japanese live-action films and DVDs, with particular focus on Japanese "kawaii (cute) and cool" pop culture. VIZ Pictures approaches each release from a J-pop fan's point of view to serve manga and anime generation in North America. VIZ Pictures titles include Train Man: Densha Otoko, LINDA LINDA LINDA, THE TASTE OF TEA, and Ping Pong. The company will continue to offer the hottest visual entertainment straight from the "Kingdom of Pop" for audiences of all ages in North America. VIZ Pictures, Inc. is an affiliate of Viz Media, LLC, the San Francisco-based leading U.S. publisher of Japanese manga (comics) and merchandise licensor of Japanese animation such as the popular "Naruto" animated TV series. For more information please visit
(c) 2006 VIZ Pictures, Inc

AnimeNEXT is the oldest-continuing New Jersey and New York City-area anime convention. Located at the Meadowlands Expo Center and the Holiday Inn in Secaucus, NJ, AnimeNEXT is only minutes from New York City. AnimeNEXT is June 20-22, 2008. Come out to see the latest anime titles in our 24-hour video rooms, check out the latest manga in our Manga Library, and see what's playing in the video game room. AnimeNEXT will also feature industry guests, voice actors, music videos, anime game shows, artist's alley, the art show, cosplay and a whole lot more. If you want to keep up-to-date with the latest in AnimeNEXT 2008 news, check out our website at It is that simple! We'll see you in June!

Universal Animation is a non-profit organization devoted to promoting anime and manga in the United States. Founded in NYC in 2002, the company organizes the AnimeNEXT and MangaNEXT conventions to aid in its goals.