Sunday, July 2, 2017

Summer of Anime (Expo)! The Panels



Anime Expo, or AX, as it is known to its fans, it's Los Angeles biggest Anime expo, taking over all of the Los Angeles Convention Center and showcasing anything anime related, with panels, signings, movies, after hour dancing, cosplaying, you never have a dull moment on 4th of July weekend! 
Unfortunately, we can't all be all places at once, so we will concentrate on what we did get an opportunity to attend. 
Every year there is that one "must go" panel, and this year wasn't the exception. We made our way to the Overwatch panel, where we got a full hour with  lead writer Michael Chu and voice actors Anjali Bhimani (Symmetra), Charlet Chung (D.Va), Fred Tatasciore (Soldier: 76), Jonny Cruz (Lucio) and Keith Silverstein (Tjorborn). The energy was very high, with fans laughing and engaging the panelists throughout. They talked about what they do for inspiration, what type of music they listen to, pineapple and pizza? All in all it was a fun hour.


Photos By Humberto Mendez
Overwatch Panel



After Overwatch, we went to the Attack On Titan Panel with the Japanese voice of Mukasa,Yui Ishikawa, the English voice actor Trina Nishimura & Producer George Wada for an hour talk about the show, showing clips and talking about the difference between the English and Japanese scripts and comparison between the manga and the  show, which contained lots of spoilers for season two!  




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After Attack On Titan, we went to our last panel of the day for Resident Evil Vendetta:




After the film, panelist included Kevin Dorman (Chris Redfield), John DeMita (Glenn Arias), Alex Von David (ADR Director), and Mami Okada (Casting Band Zoom! Entertainment) came out to talk about the film and have some fun with the audience. We were all glad to have another entry on the animated version of the series, got to hear how it all came to be and what to expect from the future of the franchise! 

More to come on day 2 of Anime Expo! 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Band Aid Premiere - The Dirty Dishes Performance



Tuesday night was the Los Angeles premiere for Band Aid, a comedy with a hint of drama about a married couple (Director/Writer Zoe Lister-Jones and Adam Pally) on the brink of separation. The fights are getting more and more intense until they figure out a way to exorcise the demons, making all their fight into songs. When their odd (creepy) neighbor (Fred Armisen) joins them as the drummer, The Dirty Dishes are born, but not without many more ups and downs (Band Aid is a by-the-numbers comedy at heart, but a very funny one at that) to come.

Lister-Jones introduced the movie to a sold out audience at The Theatre at Ace Hotel, asking the audience to stick around for a performance by The Dirty Dishes. Band Aid is one of those movies where the one liners are coming left to right from its very beginning. The audience (and myself) were laughing throughout, as the situations the couple got into all rang true in one way or another to anyone that has been in a turbulent relationship. But what about the music? Their indie songs are very funny, reminiscent of Sleater Kinney, Imperial Teen, The Moldy Peaches, very "alternative" in a punk rock way.

When The Dirty Dishes took the stage, "on their last leg of their tour", hearing the songs from the movie being played live demonstrated the passion and extra layer that Lister-Jones had to deal with making the movie, as the songs are her character's fights and passions that not only had to be acted, but made into songs that were played lived, and by their performance, you wouldn't be able to tell this was a "made up band".


After their performance an announcement (in jest?) that on June 12, the day the movie is being released in theatres across the US, The Dirty Dishes were releasing an EP "you can buy it or get a torrent of it", Lister-Jones said.
Even if it was all part of the act, make sure you don't miss Band Aid on June 12!










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Monday, May 8, 2017

XBOX Fanfest Halo Tournament

The Microsoft Store on Century City was the place to be one May 6 if you were one of the unlucky souls that didn't get a Xbox Fanfest ticket. A Halo tournament took place for the first 64 Halo players, with the remaining 200 fans being able to participate in a raffle for the another pair of tickets.

Fans were told to start lining up at 4 for the 6pm event, many of the arriving well before 4, some even as early as 1pm!

Once the line started, numbered tickets and wristbands were distributed for those playing the tournament. Once the time came for the event to begin, inside the Microsoft store there were 12 portable Xbox One stations, with 6 players battling each other.

There were chips and soda provided, but the fun was at the stations. The main players projected on a big screen on the wall for those waiting for their turn to come to study their future opponents strategies.

The event was supposed to end at 9 but the action went well over time with it ending at 10pm!


In the end there can be only one, but there was a second pair of tickets given to the second place. For those waiting on the raffle side, there were 2 pairs also given out! All in all, it was a night full of intense VS action for all in attendance, whether you were an spectator or a player, it was a fun night!










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Words by Steve Fraatz, Photos by Humberto Mendez

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

The Inspirations of Prey: The Matrix


 On April 25, 2017, at The Regent Theatre in Downtown Los Angeles, Alamo Drafhouse, in a partnership with GameStop screened The Matrix as culmination of their sci-fi festival "The Inspirations of Prey", Bethesda's upcoming first person shooter.  

The series started on April 4 in Austin with Moon, followed on April 11 in San Francisco with Starship Troopers, then Total Recall on April 19 in New York.

L.A. fans got a chance to play the game before/during/after the screening and get their hand on a limited edition poster by Tomer Hanuka from Mondo, as well as a t shirt and small notebook with Prey related drawings.

The movie was introduced by Prey's Creative Director/Co-Story Writer Raphael Colantino, telling the audience a little about the series and how they wanted to share with the fans of the game where they got most of the inspiration while making the game. Colantino and Lead Systems Designer Seth Shain were present the whole night, giving interviews, talking to fans, Shain played the game after the movie ended on the big screen for fans to see how a pro takes care of business.

The Matrix is one of those movies that changed cinema, and put the Wachowskis on the map, it's the sci-fi film that introduced the "bullet time" effect that has now been used to death, as well as making lead Keanu Reeves an action star. After playing the game, the movie's influences can be seen, as we are left to ponder, "what is reality?" as the credits roll.

Surprisingly, The Regent wasn't at capacity, maybe it was the fact that the event took place on a school night? But all those in attendance had fun, whether watching the movie or playing the game, along with free drinks, popcorn, what more could one want of a Tuesday night?
One thing is for sure, can't wait to play the game when PREY comes out on May 5!










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Words by Steve Fraatz, Photos by Humberto Mendez

Monday, March 27, 2017

Anarchy In Asian America: After Party W/ Sisu & Low On High

For the second part of the night, the action moved to Tommy's Place, where Los Angeles shoegaze band Sisu & Jon Moritsugu/Amy Davis' Low On High performed. Tommy's Place was the perfect place for these bands to perform, the stage, the lights, but most important the energy from their performances was the perfect way to close this fun Friday night.

Sisu

Sisu

Sisu

Sisu

Sisu

Low On High 

Low On High

Low On High

Low On High

Low On High

Low On High

Low On High

Low On High

For their Performances:
Sisu:
Low On High: 

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