Félicitations! Sailor Moon Retour en France!

Great news out of France today from both a French manga news site, as well as a release! Moonies in France, mark your calendars for July 2012 – the renewal editions of Sailor Moon and Codename: Sailor V will be published by Pika Édition (as we predicted back in July).  It looks like their release schedule will mimic what we have seen in North America and other countries around the world, with the two titles being published simultaneously.  In about a week or so one of our staff members will contact Pika Édition’s distribution arm in Quebec to double check if the releases will be hitting Québécois Moonies (which they likely will, but we just want to make sure).


Sorry Moonies there weren’t any updates over the holidays. Not much has been going on and we’ve been busy preparing things we need to get going throughout this month.  More soon! Happy New Year – and 2012 WILL be a good year for Sailor Moon!

France to Get Sailor Moon Manga (and sadly it won’t be from Glénat)

Pauvre Groupe Glénat In a new interview from Krinein Magazine with the editors of Glénat manga from France, the company kept their promise to keep fans updated about the whereabouts of the Sailor Moon manga. It also stands to be mentioned that Glénat also had a distributing arm in Quebec, so many of their titles reached Canadian Francophone manga fans.   Here is our translation of the question and answer in English :

Sailor Moon:

Fan: It is Glénat who is the French editor of Sailor Moon and Sailor V, I would like to know why Sailor Moon is no longer in the Glénat manga catalogue, and also because the sales of the manga in Quebec are almost exhausted.

Glénat:  We promised to keep you all aware of the situation since the author has recovered all of the rights.  The answers are beginning to come to us, and unfortunately we will not be the publisher of the next version of Sailor Moon.  You will have to ask other editors to see who has won the contract.  Of course, this is a disappointment for us, but these are the rules of the game.

So the question now becomes, who does have the rights to the manga?  Our bet is that it might be Pika Édition, since they already have the rights to several other Kodansha titles including Negima, Shugo Chara, Tokyo Mew Mew, and Love Hina.  Pika Édition also has a distributing arm in Canada for Francophone manga fans.  But, this is all speculation until an official announcement is made.  France and Francophone fans should still rejoice – after a very long wait there is finally some movement on the Sailor Moon and Sailor V manga!

Breaking News: New Sailor Moon Merchandise Licenses:

Via Sailor Moon World Italy (and some fans’ messages, thanks!), some new companies involved in merchandising have acquired licenses for Sailor Moon. These include two companies with US branches and one for France; Topps (Germany, Italy and America), Namco Bandai Games America, and Giochi Preziozi France. It is probably safe to infer that Topps will be releasing sticker books (and possibly cards), Giochi Preziozi France will release some (if not all) of the toys made in Italy, and NBGA is likely going to bring La Luna Splende to North America eventually. But, nothing is confirmed, and everyone should have waited for a press release. We have been advised from the companies to play it safe and wait for official word before posting anything like this, but given the criticism and heat we have had to face from some fans, we’re addressing it now as safely as we possibly can. We’ve featured a large photo below filled with cropped screenshots from Kazachok’s Web Guide.

What remains to be known (especially in France and North America), is if this is a sign that the release of the anime is imminent in either of these regions. There are a few other regions in the world that don’t have Sailor Moon either (Russia and Ukraine, to start). In a Japanese press release announcing the return of Sailor Moon to North America, Kodansha made note of how especially in North America, that without the release of the anime and other merchandise, that the manga may not experience the same “big boom” of the past*. We can’t speculate on the progress being made on the anime, due to certain statements made in the last 2 months from companies and representatives all around. We have to wonder if these new merchandising deals are some kind of a placeholder in between that will ultimately aid the anime when the time is right for it to return, while also tiding the release of the manga. Usually, the pattern in Sailor Moon licensing news has been anime first, merchandise and manga second. What do you think, Moonies?

*We had read this the day it was posted but didn’t post anything about it on Moon Chase because you fans were in such a happy mood and we didn’t want to damper the situation! Instead, we all discussed it amongst ourselves for a while and once again, wondered why Sailor Moon was having such a turbulent resurgence.

Glénat Answers Fans’ Questions About Sailor Moon Manga

A new interview from a representative of France’s Glénat Manga was posted to manga-news.com this morning. The first question the representative answered is a question from the site wondering about when the Sailor Moon manga is going to be released.

Q: We know we have asked you about this many times, but is there a new blockage of the rights for the manga for international publishing (and most notably France)? Because there are many rumors circulating here and there concerning an improvement in the situation, but it is difficult to understand, I am asking you. Moreover, if the perception is that it is (or will be) released, can we hope for the renewal editions? Because the only thing we can sink our teeth into is Sailor V**. How is it that the mother series has been blocked and not those of Sailor V?

A: To resume the explanation concerning the case of Sailor Moon. The author has recovered all of the rights. She has renegotiated for two years county by country at her own rhythm. She has decided to begin with the USA, Spain, and Italy, and we must wait until those negotiations finish before entering into discussions with the author, if she decides that France will be her next country to work on, which has in no way been confirmed. We are in the same situation as the fans of Sailor Moon, and we have no other choice but to respect the method chosen by the author. When the discussions are possible, the editions published will obviously be the renewed versions, the subject of our request for the last 3 years. Sailor Moon and Sailor V are two different series, and they do not have the same contractual bases. From information that we have been given, the author has not recovered the rights for Sailor V.

We had always assumed that Naoko Takeuchi and Princess Naoko Planning had the rights to Sailor V, but it appears this is not the case. Now we believe that it is Kodansha that somehow has the rights to Sailor V, but may be optimizing a marketing strategy by releasing it in conjunction with Sailor Moon. We hope that the fans of Sailor Moon in France will be able to enjoy the manga soon. We are sad, but by no means surprised by this lag given what we have learned about Naoko Takeuchi since 2009.

**This is in reference to the old version of Sailor V.

Sailor Moon Industry News Europe: Fall 2010 Update

A lot has been going on with Sailor Moon in Europe in the last months, so let’s catch up on the situation in the Moon Kingdom!

First, let’s start off with some only-interesting-to-some-and-boring-to-others industry briefs. Toei Animation Europe (TAE) has been exhibiting at lots of different places, and is not letting the work of their brand licensors go unnoticed. At the first of these appearances at Brand Licensing Europe 2010, the animation giant hosted a special event where they handed out three awards honoring companies that they have worked with in the past year with the most success. Winning for Best Licensing Program was Backstage Licensing of Italy for their work with Sailor Moon. Best Promotion went to TFI Enterprises of France for their work with all the Dragon Ball franchises, and Best Involvement went to Plus Licens of Sweden for their work with all the Dragon Ball franchises as well as One Piece. Kanji Kazahaya, President and COO of TAE was grateful, saying: “We are very delighted to start with this first edition of Toei Animation awards for our European brokers… as a Japanese company, it is a great time to share our motivation and challenges with our European partners.” We are so happy to hear of Toei Animation’s continued successes in Europe! Next, they appeared at Hyper Japan in London from October 1st-3rd, and exhibited their Toei Animation Theatre where for the first time in years Sailor Moon was shown officially in English! Not the dub though. The first episode was shown with English subtitles alongside the first episode of Pretty Cure and Yes! Pretty Cure 5 (also subtitled). We are officially jealous of our London readers who got to attend the screening! And if that wasn’t enough, TAE also exhibited their properties at MIPCOM in Cannes, France from October 4th-8th. TAE did not exhibit at MIPJr. this year (a showcase just for childrens programming).

Sailor Moon continues to leave everyone in her moondust in Italy! Backstage Licensing reports that Sailor Moon has peaks of viewers nearing the 1 million mark, and an average market share of around 9% (if the words “market share” confuse you, read our article from last week). What surprised us the most was reading about the girls’ 4-14 demographic in Italy (preschoolers, young kids, and tweens) where the article said that Sailor Moon was maintaining a strong appeal with a share close to 40%! Once again, odango-atama/meatball head continues to defy industry expectations.Not bad for an “old show” that is proving to be a timeless classic. Everyeye Italy pointed to a new interview on the Metal Robot Forums with Carlo Cavazzoni, Executive Director of Dynit Italy, which will be releasing Sailor Moon on DVD. Here, is a translation of the Sailor Moon portion of the interview:

METALROBOT: The following questions discuss the issues of the series “Sailor Moon”.

METALROBOT: The news of the acquisition of the home video rights for the series “Sailor Moon” has now been confirmed through Dynit’s website. Why was a series like this chosen to be added to the Dynit Catalog?

Dynit: The brand was relaunched on an international level, and there are many companies involved in this project in Italy, Dynit Home Video has acquired the rights for the traditional channels (video stores, comics, etc …). It is a series that has been very successful, and which we hope will conquer a new generation.

7. Was the aquisition of the rights for this series complicated? How did it happen that for a long time, years, the sale of the rights of the series for foreign countries was blocked?

Dynit: We do not know what the motivations were, it often depends on the rights situation in Japan. Sometimes, just to boost yourself up you need to disappear for a long time.

8. METALROBOT: Can you reveal a few more details in type? Will the releases cover all of the series and movies?

Dynit: It will cover the television series.

METALROBOT: Will the releases have a redub or will there only be the original dub with subtitles faithful to the original series?

Dynit: We did not expect to redub the series, we acquired the home video rights of the original dub. The series will be unedited in its entirety, we are now working with subtitles.

METALROBOT: When will the releases be listed for sale on the home video market?

Dynit: We plan to release them in early 2011, in singles and DVD boxsets.

Fans in Italy who were expecting a redub, it appears that there will not be one. We are most surprised reading that the movies will not be re-released with the series. If we remember correctly, the fans loved the movies just as much as the series?! Here is hoping that there will be some hope for releases of the movies in the future. We were irked by Cavazzoni’s comment about disappearing just for attention – this really wasn’t the case at all. This is almost like all the rumors we read about Yoshihiro Togashi only going on hiatus to get attention for Hunter X Hunter. We can understand feigning off interviewers for keeping the real reason for the rights disappearing under wraps, but to say something like this even in the independent press, is pretty low.