28th Annual Anime Expo – The Ultimate Japanese Pop-Culture Experience

The Los Angeles Convention Center brought together everything in the world of Japanese pop-culture over five days to celebrate at Anime Expo. The largest celebration of this Japanese pop-culture in North America welcomed nearly three-hundred-fifty-thousand attendees. The five-day extravaganza was held from July 3rd through the 7th and attracted enthusiastic fans from more than 78 countries.

Just a few of the many highlights from the Anime Expo included:

The “Gibiate Project” governed by the Japanese concept of “Harmony” and focused on the overseas fan base, has decided to release their newest Anime series in Summer of 2020. Gathering a special selection of legendary creators from the Game, Manga and Anime genre in Japan, the Gibitate Project released the first promotional video for the “Gibiate” Anime series at Anime Expo during their Closing Ceremonies.

19 World & US Premieres:  Anime Expo featured plenty of films making their debuts, such as the highly anticipated exclusive screening of the newest animated Pokémon movie, Pokémon: Mewtwo Strikes Back—Evolution,  “MY HERO ACADEMIA” Season 4 Premiere, Aniplex’s “Rascal Does Not Dream of a Dreaming Girl” and “Gundam NT”  World Premiere in 4DX.

Concerts: Music always plays a big part of the AX experience and this year’s concerts showed the diversity of tastes with an exlectic mix of music asschool idol group Aqours performed Love Live! Sunshine!! Aqours Wolrd LoveLive! In LA ~ BRAND NEW WAVE ~ on two nights and legendary composer and musician Yoshihiro Ike, one of the most recognized composers in Japan, entertained with his international debut performance on Sunday, July 8 with Yoshihiro Ike: Anime Soundtrack World.

Guests of Honor: Many industry guests shared their knowledge and passion with attendees including Guests of Honor Yoshinori Ono, Rica Matsumoto, Katsuhiro Otomo, Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, and Yusuke Kozaki.

Artist Alley and The Annex: Always a must-do at AX, the largest gathering of amateur and semi-professional artists at any convention, Artist Alley boasted more than 500 artists from across the US and all over the world who showcased a variety of handmade creations for sale to attendees, including original artwork, prints, crafts, clothing and comic collections. This year’s featured artists were Shinnosuke Uchida, the world’s only wall-manga live paint artist, and LA-based pop culture artist Jared Yamahata. Featuring cutting-edge, fashion-forward designers, The Annex welcomed h. NAOTO, HYPLAND, Hot Topic, Metamorphose, Acryl CANDY, and amnesiA&paramenesiA showcasing their unique creations and clothing lines.

Next year, Anime Expo is scheduled to return to the Los Angeles Convention Center from July 2 – 5.  Premier Fan and 4-day badges for AX 2020 will go on sale August 16, 2019.

About SPJA

SPJA is a non-profit organization dedicated to popularize and educate the American public about Japanese entertainment and pop culture, as well as provide a forum to facilitate communication between professionals and fans. For more information, please visit www.spja.org.

About Anime Expo

Anime Expo (AX) brings together fans and industry from Japan, the US, and all over the world for the largest celebration of Japanese pop culture in North America. Taking place every year since 1992, Anime Expo features the best in Japanese entertainment, music, fashion, and video games. For more information, visit www.anime-expo.org.

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