February 26th, 2013

Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix heads west this fall


Square Enix has confirmed Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix for PlayStation 3 in North America and Europe this fall. In European and PAL territories, the game will be localized English, French, German, Italian and Spanish.

The PlayStation 3 collection will include high-def remasters of Kingdom Hearts: Final Mix, previously exclusive to the Japanese market, and Kingdom Hearts Re: Chain of Memories, with enhanced gameplay mechanics and trophies. Additionally, it includes high-def story cutscenes from Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days.


Nakai Masahiro and Kusanagi Tsuyoshi to star in TV Asahi drama SPs


Nakai Masahiro and Kusanagi Tsuyoshi will star in two TV Asahi drama SPs shown over two consecutive weeks as reported on 24 February.

Nakai will play the role of a ryotei chef in the remake of the "Aji Ichimone" series which was a full length series shown between 1995 and 1996 and had three drama SPs, In this latest instalment, there will be a new chef from France joining the ryotei. Co-stars include Kuninaka Ryoko and Kaname Jun.

As for Kusanagi, he will play a police detective who was framed for attempted murder and spent 10 years in jail. After he was released, he gets his job back and is sent to Kyoto Prefectural Police where he takes part in special investigations which tap on his in-depth knowledge about criminals. Co-stars include Minami Kaho and Oosugi Ren.

cute @!

E-girls release the short ver. PV for “CANDY SMILE” + announce their 1st album

E-girls will be releasing their 5th single “CANDY SMILE” which is chosen for UHA Mikakuto’s ‘e-ma Nodo Ame× e-girls” campaign CM song, on March 13. Recently the details on the upcoming single, as well as the short version PV for the title track have been revealed.
Additionally, they are also scheduled to release their first album titled “Lesson 1” on April 17th. It will be comprised with their singles, new songs, and so on. The album will have [CD+DVD] version and [CD only] version. Further details on the first album will be announced later.




Japan spent more than $10 million on K-Pop royalties in 2012


It seems that Japanese really have a knack for Korean pop music. According to the Korea Music Copyright Association (KOMCA), it has completed the tally of the data given by the Japanese Society for Rights of Authors, Composers and Publishers and found that last year’s total royalties received from Japan amounted to some 11.03 billion won, or approximately ¥954 million/$10.1 million.

The amount came from K-pop songs being played and sung in concerts, television and radio shows, even in karaoke bars. It amounts to about 10% of royalties earned within Korea covering the same period. Since 2009, the royalties for K-pop from Japan sharply increased from $2.2 million. TV and radio broadcasting made 75% of the money, and a greater part of that was from original soundtracks of TV series. There were twenty-eight Korean shows that aired in regular channels in Japan last year, while 42 were on cable.

K-pop stars such as Jang Keun-suk, Kara, TVXQ and Girls’ Generation made over 90 appearances on Japanese TV shows to sing their songs. Korean music shows have also become a standard feature. About 11% of the royalties came from karaoke bars, and 7% from mobile phone services. KOMCA said royalties earned in Japan are incomparably bigger than those earned in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore and in the U.S. It warns, though, that if the territorial conflict between Japan and South Korea does not improve, this figure might be the highest it’s going to get for quite a long while.


Hey! Say! JUMP Tour 2013

Announced via the HSJ FC mail and Johnnys net, below is the schedule, which will include Tokyo Dome and Kyocera Dome dates:

[Hey! Say! JUMP Tour 2013 Schedule]Shizuoka Ecopa Arena
4/13 (Saturday) 18:00
4/14 (Sunday) 13:00/17:00

Sanwa Arena Aomori (Aomori Prefectural Skating Rink)
4/28 (Sunday) 16:00

Toki Messe Niigata Convention Center
5/3 (Friday) 13:00/17:00

Tokyo Dome
5/11 (Saturday) 18:00
5/12 (Sunday) 18:00

Hiroshima Green Arena
5/19 (Sunday) 13:00/17:00

Kyocera Dome Osaka
5/25 (Saturday) 18:00
5/26 (Sunday) 16:00

Kagoshima Arena
6/23 (Sunday) 13:00/17:00

Mie-ken Ei Sun Arena
6/30 (Sunday) 12:00/16:00

Nagano Big Hat
7/14 (Sunday) 14:00/18:00
7/15 (Monday) 13:00/17:00

Hokkaido Prefectural Sports Center (Hokkaido Kitayell)
7/21 (Sunday) 13:00/17:00

Marine Messe Fukuoka
8/11 (Sunday) 13:00/17:00

Miyagi Sekisui Heim Super Arena
8/23 (Friday) 17:00

Prior to this, they'll be holding JOHNNY’s Worl “Thanksgiving Festival” event in March. Reportedly, the content for the “thanksgiving festival” event will be different from “JOHNNY’s World”, as Toho, which is the production company for “JOHNNY’s World”, won’t be involved in the festival.

JOHNNY’s World “Thanksgiving Festival”

Tokyo Dome

Kyocera Dome Osaka

credits here and here


'J Series Festival' in Thailand

'Junno' of the group KAT-TUN to lead Japanese stars to Thailand! To open the 'J Series Festival', the historical cooperation between Thai-Japanese TV broadcasting

To strengthen the true era of the rebirth of Japan fever! Here comes the biggest cooperation in history between Thailand and Japan broadcasting industry under the title "International Drama Festival Committee" to establish "J Series Festival" that is going to bring a lot of Japanese series from popular Japanese TV like NHK, NTV, TBS, Fuji TV, TV Asahi & TV Tokyo as supported by Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications (Japan) to be broadcasted on Thai televisions including free-to-air TV channels and satelite channels.

And the make this project with the concept "Not just to show out some 'dramas' but to show the 'inspiring stories'" complete, the opening ceremony of J Series Festival is set to make it big! We will bring the screen characters in to real world! With the representatives of Japanese super stars, leading the team by the enchanting idol "Junnosuke Taguchi", a member of KAT-TUN, one of the  J-Pop boybands of god (lol, that's what the announcement says) together with talented beautiful, awarded actress "Miho Kanna" and guest artists including AVEX's fresh-looking girl group "Tokyo Girls' Style" or Tokyo Joshiryu and two-vocal young male single "PIKO", all of them will bring the Japan's hotness to Thailand on Sunday March 17 at Siam Pavalai Royal Grand Theatre, Siam Paragon.

Get ready to the part of this important event which will bring special moments to Japanese series and music fans. To meet upclosed, to attend the press conference and to win a limited chance to take pictures with all the celebrities on stage, to watch the teasers of Japanese dramas that are soon to be broadcasted on various channels in Thailand and to have fun with shows from Tokyo Girls' Style and PIKO! As for the Thailand side will be represented by talented actress Opal (Panisara Pimpru), actor & DJ Bo (Tanakorn Chinnakul) together with the new artist Keng The Voice (Tachaya Pratumwan)....

With all the special treatments are open for everyone to enjoy without payments, at the press conference of "J Series Festival" on Sunday March 17, at Siam Pavalai Royal Grand Theatre, Siam Paragon.

translator's note: Junno will come to promote LEGAL HIGH broadcast in Thailand.

source here, credits here

oh Japan's reaching out, and J&A actually sends a representative.

ORANGE RANGE Announces First New Single In 4 Years


ORANGE RANGE has announced that they will be releasing a new single, "Oboro na Ageha / Moshimo", on April 17th.

The band's upcoming single will be its first new single in nearly 4 years. Their last single, "Hitomi no Saki ni", was released on July 8th, 2009.

The single release announcement was made during the band's Tokyo performance of their nationwide tour in front of an audience of 2,700 people who immediately began screaming in excitement at their announcement.

"Oboro na Ageha" will be an upbeat song with quick, deep beats. The song was composed by the band's bassist, YOH. "Moshimo" will be a slower-paced love song composed by the band's guitarist, NAOTO.

The double A-side single will come in a regular edition and a limited edition. The limited edition version will include 3 extra tracks, all
of which are live recordings from their tour "ORANGE RANGE LIVE TOUR 012 ~NEO POP STANDARD~".

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Beijing restaurant criticized for refusal to serve Japanese, Vietnamese and Filipino customers


Vietnamese have voiced out their anger regarding a Beijing restaurant’s refusal to serve customers from countries locked in maritime territorial disputes with China. The restaurant has put up signs on its windows that said, “This shop does not welcome Japanese, Filipinos, and Vietnamese, and dogs,” according to a photo posted by a Chinese-American user on Facebook last week.

The restaurant’s actions has drawn strong criticism in Vietnam, where tensions over the Spratly and Paracel islands have sparked a series of anti-China protests over the past two years. Lawyer Le Hieu Dang said he thought Chinese authorities’ should have taken action against the restaurant owner. “They should have told the restaurant to take that note off and disciplined them because that insults other people in the world. It is racism. The Beijing government should have strong measures against that,” he added. He said the racism evident in the sign was similar to China’s “bullying” of its smaller neighbors in its foreign policy. “I think people around the world will have strong reactions against this extreme nationalism, which shows the hatred between nations and how big country bullies small countries,” he said.

The owner of the restaurant in Beijing’s Houhai neighborhood, told BBC News this week that he didn’t care what others felt about the sign, and that he had put it up out of “patriotism.” He also said he has gotten support from his Chinese customers. George P. Jan, a U.S.-based former professor of Chinese politics, said that the views of one restaurant owner should not be taken as representative of all of China. “This sign does not represent the attitude of most Chinese people. I think it is unwise and emotional. Chinese people are not opposed to all Japanese, Filipinos, or Vietnamese indiscriminately,” he said. He said nationalism could cause people to get carried away with their views.

China is currently embroiled in territorial disputes with Japan over islands in the East China Sea, and with the Philippines and Vietnam over islands in the South China Sea. Tensions with Japan over the disputes boiled over into a wave of anti-Japanese protests in numerous Chinese cities last fall.

IchigOhchan 1

[Discuss] Some compelling necessities for South Korea and Japan to advance their relations

written by Park Cheol-Hee

South Korea-Japan relations deteriorated after then South Korean President Lee Myung-bak visited Dokdo last August, but signs of a change in the relationship first appeared at a summit in Kyoto in December 2011.
At that time, Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda simply repeated that the “comfort women” issue was fully resolved by the 1965 Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and South Korea, and that Japan bears no further legal responsibility for the issue. Noda did not even mention Japan's past efforts, including the Murayama statement of 1995 and the Kono statement of 1993 issued by past Japanese administrations.
The summit showed that territorial and historical issues are the greatest obstacles hobbling bilateral relations between the two countries.

Self-restraint and open-mindedness
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note about the author:
Park Cheol-Hee is a professor at the Graduate school of International Studies (GSIS) at Seoul National University. He is director at the Institute for Japanese Studies at the university. He got a Ph.D. at Columbia University. He earned his B.A. in political science from Seoul National University and his Ph.D. in political science from Columbia University. His areas of expertise are international relations in East Asia, Japanese politics and diplomacy, and Japan-South Korea relations. His prior posts include assistant professor at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies and, from 2002 to 2004, assistant professor at the Institute for Foreign Affairs and National Security. In 2005, Park received the Yasuhiro Nakasone Award for, among other accomplishments, his efforts to build mutual understanding between Japan and South Korea.

Source: Asahi Shimbun

Interesting read. If only this will happen in real life :3
IchigOhchan 1

Inspirational story: Akiko Kuno’s strength as a woman stretches back through generations

Female forebears also made distinguished contributions to modern Japanese society
by Michael Kleindl

Akiko Kuno, 72, believes her destiny is tied with a red string to the United States. So she says as she speaks of her and her family’s life at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan in Tokyo, where as a child she first tasted Coca-Cola and a hamburger.
Kuno’s red string stretches back through her mother and her grandmother to her great-grandmother, Sutematsu Oyama, the first Japanese woman to graduate from an American university — at the top of her class and as valedictorian of Vassar College’s class of 1882.

Like all the women in her family, Kuno is an exemplar — a woman who has followed her own path despite the strong social and family pressures of Japanese society.

Born in Shinagawa in Tokyo, Kuno’s first contact with the U.S. came from her mother. “She was very outgoing for her age,” Kuno recalls. Her mother was fluent in English and studied abroad at Hope College in Michigan and at the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago during the Great Depression. “Instead of reading me Japanese fairy tales when I was a child, she would read American stories like Rip Van Winkle.”

Her grandmother was also outgoing and unafraid to speak her mind. She was fluent in English as well, learning it from Sutematsu, and when she married in 1904, moved with her banker husband to London for two years.

While in London, her grandmother met a young boy from India. Meeting another Asian in the British capital, she thought she needed to say something to him, Kuno says. She urged the boy to be courageous, to study hard and not to have an inferiority complex, telling him that as an Asian he’d have a better chance in the future.

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source: Japan Times

It has been awhile since I share something like this here.
And mods, please ignore the other one, coz I was in a hurry and forgot to put the source. Yoroshiku...


fade Overseas Fanclub Open!

fade announced the opening of their Overseas Fanclub at the final of their Sky's the Limit Tour in Shibuya WWW on 28 December 2012. This follows the opening of their Japanese fanclub earlier that year, as well as the announcement of their Major Debut with Universal Music in 2013. The fanclub was slated to open in January 2013, but due to delays and with the band busy working on their first major album, the official opening is now 1 April 2013.

Applications are already open. (Change the language to English on the FC site)
It costs 3000yen a year, and a one time only 1000yen application fee.
But if you sign up before 30 April, the application fee is waived. Payment is by credit card.

Sources: staff_fade twitter, Fanclub Homepage, fadefamily LJ community

I'm really happy for the band, and it's great that the International FC also gets the Member Tag&Key (it works as FC ID/card)!

‘Ban Abortion to Improve Birthrate’ Says Japanese Politician & Netizen comments

Abortion in Japan has something of a chequered history; while the earliest records of induced abortions date from the 12th century, it was banned nationwide shortly after the 1868 Meiji Restoration, then made criminal in 1907 under the Criminal Abortion Law.

While this law is technically still in force today, it has been made somewhat redundant due to other legislation such as the 1948 Eugenic Protection Law, revised in 1966 as the Maternal Health Protection Law. This means that abortion is effectively legal in Japan.

Furthermore, abortion is widely accepted in Japan, since it has none of the Judeo-Christian influence that makes abortion a difficult issue in some Western nations.

This recent column published in the Asahi Shimbun by Liberal Democratic Party politician Noda Seiko suggests that abortion should be prohibited in an attempt to address the falling birthrate. Japanese netizen comments strongly disagree with her proposed policies, highlighting almost uniformly supportive attitudes towards abortion.

From Asahi Shimbun:

‘Falling Birthrate Strategy Should Begin With Abortion Issue’ Says LDP Chairperson Noda
Noda Seiko, Chairperson of the Liberal Democratic Party Executive Council

With 200,000 pregnancies being terminated per year, if we are to counteract the falling birthrate, then we must begin there. I intend to have this reviewed in the party’s Special Committee on Population Decline in Society following the Upper House elections. We will not only prohibit abortion, but instead of prohibition we must also create laws (to mediate) child adoption, and prepare an environment in which children who are born can be brought up in society.

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  • aibada

T.M. Revolution is prettier than your faves

Nishikawa Takanori (aka T.M.Revolution) made his modeling debut disguising himself as ‘Nishikawa Takako’ on the April issue of women’s fashion magazine “CanCam” (released on February 23rd).

This is not the first time Nishikawa has disguised himself as a woman. He has also done so on the jacket covers for his albums “UNDER : COVER” (released in 2006) and “UNDER : COVER 2” (to be released on the 27th), and he also performed AKB48’s and Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s songs while dressed like them at his new year live concerts.

Nishikawa’s appearance on CanCam is a part of the magazine’s popular project “Masaka Watashi ga Can-ryu ni!?”, in which celebrities from
different fields experience the ‘CanCam-style’ fashion and make-up. Previously, it has featured Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, Momoiro Clover Z, Tsuchiya Anna, Watanabe Naomi, and more.

On the magazine, Nishikawa became an OL (*stands for office lady = female office worker) “Takako” who is in charge of sales at a company in
Tokyo, and she shows spring fashion through three scenes from OL’s daily life.

On the release day, Nishikawa tweeted, “I’m ‘Nishikawa Takako’, appeared on CanCam as a model. Nice to meet you.”


Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes to tackle “mature themes”


Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeroes, the next game from Kojima Productions, will tackle many “taboos” and “mature themes,” according to Metal Gear series creator Hideo Kojima. So much so, that Kojima is unsure if he’ll even be able to release the game.

“Over the past 25 years, I have tried to work with the Metal Gear series to try and introduce more mature themes,” Kojima told Spong. “But really, it hasn’t happened yet, compared to movies or books. There’s still has a long way to go. That’s precisely what I want to try and tackle with my next project, Ground Zeroes. I’m going to be targeting a lot of taboos, a lot of mature themes, that really are quite risky. Honestly, I’m not even sure if i’ll be able to release the game!”

He added, “And even if I did release the game, maybe it wouldn’t sell, because [the themes would be] just too much. But as a creator, I want to take that risk. As a producer, it’s my job to try and sell the game. But I’m approaching this project from the point of view of a creator, where I’m prioritizing creativity over sales.”

Hopefully, that risk won’t lead into the following scenario, as described by Kojima.

“It’s very possible that some time in the future after Ground Zeroes is out, I may be called up by management who will say, ‘Kojima! What are you doing? Ground Zeroes isn’t selling! What have you done?’ And at that point I’ll [hopefully be able to] say, ‘Don’t worry! [Metal Gear] Rising is selling well!”


Japanese government proposes the promotion committee for Cool Japan

The government plans to establish a public-private entity in autumn with the aim of promoting exports of Japanese anime, fashion and other goods and content under its "Cool Japan" initiative, informed sources have said.

With Cool Japan promotion being one of its key policy measures, the government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe intends to nurture related businesses into major export industries. The government has set aside 50 billion yen as capital of the new entity under its fiscal 2013 draft budget. Early next month, it will submit related bills to the Diet.

On the 26th, the government revealed list of advisers for the campaign's promotion committee. Inada Tomomi was appointed the head of the committee while the seven advisers were revealed.

These advisers include: Akimoto Yasushi (lyricist, and producer of idol group, AKB48), Kadokawa Tsuguhiko (Kadokawa Group Holdings, Inc. chairman), Kin Birei (critic), Koshino Junko ((fashion) designer), Satake (Minokichi company president), Sen Shoushitsu (Urasenke school of tea ceremony head master), Yoda Tatsumi (Gaga Corporation chairman, representative director and CEO).

Their age comes to an average of 67 years old, consisting of three women (counting in Ms. Inada) and five men.

Kadokawa Group Holdings, Inc. is a group holding company, bringing together 43 different companies in publishing, movies and more.
Gaga Corporation is a foreign movies distributer in Japan.
Minokichi is a chain of restaurants centered on traditional Kyoto cuisine.

source, 1

By putting Aki-P on the list, I feel like Abe is saying, 'I don't care about your opinions/feelings/cries for human rights, I just want your money.' Tbh, I'd help them promote for free, but they'd need to get sites up and running in multiple languages. Better yet, hire Kumamon.