Article by PatrickD    (08-28-08 12:13 AM)
As Kumoricon gears up to launch its 6th annual anime convention at the Portland Doubletree at Lloyd Center, it hosts the largest lineup of guests of honor in its history. With pre-registration numbers higher than the event's total attendance in 2006, Oregon's largest anime convention plans to welcome over 4000 attendees this Labor Day Weekend.

Attendees can visit www.kumoricon.org for the latest news and event updates on the con. Kumoricon welcomes fans from Oregon, the Northwest, and beyond from August 30 to September 1.

--- Guests of Honor ---

KIRK THORNTON returns to Kumoricon as a guest for the third year in a row, after attending Kumoricon, his first anime con, as a guest in 2006. A native of Oregon, he has spent 18 years in the trenches and some of the roles he has to show for it are Jin (Samurai Champloo), Hiei (Yu Yu Hakusho), Tazuna (Naruto), Saidoh (Bleach), and Gabumon and Mummymon (Digimon).

TOMMY YUNE has worked for over a decade in the comic book and video game industries. Tommy now serves as Harmony Gold's creative director and oversees new development, including Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles which completed production in 2006.

RICHARD EPCAR is well known to anime fans, starting with the original Robotech series--in which he played Ben Dixon, Lunk, Gruel, and now Capt. Vince Grant in the new original animated feature, Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles, which he also directed.

ELLYN STERN began acting at the age of 13. She is a classically trained actress known for both her dramatic and comedic roles. Her career spans from film to television to stage. She started in anime with the original Robotech series--in which she played several characters. Most recently she can be heard in the forthcoming game Blue Dragon as Maru's and Jiro's Mom. She is currently co-directing a very big game, whose name can only be revealed to the CIA.

KAJA FOGLIO is a Seattle-based writer, artist and publisher. She founded Studio Foglio, LLC in 1993 as a venue for her Magic: The Gathering art prints, but quickly expanded into publishing. She co-writes the comic series Girl Genius with her husband Phil.

PHIL FOGLIO won the Hugo Award for Best Fan Artist back in 1977, and is still waiting for the wealth and unlimited power he was told this would bring. In the meantime he has made a career as a writer and artist because he liked the idea of commuting fifty feet to his office. His current project is the comic book series Girl Genius, which he works on with his wife, Kaja.

CARL GUSTAV HORN is a manga editor at Portland's own Dark Horse Comics (celebrating its 20th anniversary of manga publishing this year!), he has worked in the U.S. anime and manga industry since 1993, and was a co-author with Patrick Macias on Japan Edge, the first book on otaku culture to be reviewed in the mainstream media.

GREG DEAN has been writing and illustrating his online comic, Real Life since late 1999. Real Life is a semi-autobiographical comic about the author and his friends. What's meant by semi-autobiographical? Well, it deals with such subjects as going to work or school, road trips to Michigan, and building a giant orbital space station of death. Which is absurd, because Greg's never even BEEN to Michigan.

ELIZABETH DEAN is the other side of this team. Although she and Greg hadn't met by the time the comic was created, she has quickly made herself a major role in the comic's workings. She does just about everything except for draw the comic herself. Greg and Elizabeth worked so well together as a team that they decided to get married as well.

THE ANIME HUNTERS have been attending Kumoricon since 2004 and they have performed multiple skits, hosted two panels, and hosted an online comedy show. And now they are back to bring entertainment to Kumoricon!

THE SLANTS return to Kumoricon for 2008, where they made their anime convention debut in 2007! The Slants are an Asian dance/rock band from Portland, OR, formed in 2006 by members of The Stivs, Son of Rust, and Evening at the Black House. Their music is a cacophony of melodic rock intricacy tempered by darker dance themes with anthemic choruses and shattering hooks reminiscent of groups such as The Faint, Depeche Mode, Daft Punk, and Joy Division--except with an Asian spin.

In addition to these great guests, we are happy to announce screenings of the following anime and Japanese live-action movies:

MARIA WATCHES OVER US

When Yumi entered a prestigious all-girls Catholic school in Tokyo, she never imagined she would catch the eye of Sachiko, one of the school's most popular girls. Now Sachiko has offered to be Yumi's soeur--her "sister" and guide at the academy. The entire campus is abuzz with rumors about the two of them, but Yumi is conflicted over accepting Sachiko's offer. While she admires Sachiko, being her soeur would also mean constantly being at the center of the entire school's attention!

EMMA, A VICTORIAN ROMANCE

Just released by Right Stuf, Emma tells the story of a hard working honest young maid who has never felt her place in life to be a burden. But then she meets William, eldest son of a wealthy family. His warm smile and affection threaten to capture her heart, but can love truly conquer all?

DEATH NOTE

Based on the bestselling supernatural action mystery manga written by Tsugumi Ohba and illustrated by Takeshi Obata. Death Note was first released in Japan in 2006, becoming an instant smash hit. The story begins when ace student Light Yagami finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue "Shinigami" death god named Ryuk. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies. Upset with the justice system, Light takes matters into his own hands and vows to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of all evil.

NANA

Based on the popular manga by Ai Yazawa, Nana follows the adventures of two girls both named Nana. While they share the same name, they couldn't be more different. One follows her boyfriend to Tokyo in hopes to make a new start, while the other is a punk rock beauty who has an ambition to make it big in the world of rock and roll. Although these two young women come from different backgrounds, they quickly become best friends to seek their happiness and dreams. J-pop Icon MIKA NAKASHIMA and actress AOI MIYAZAKI bring the manga to life. Original theme song written by J-Rock charisma HYDE (L'Arc-en-Ciel).

GACKT: THE GREATEST FILMOGRAPHY 1999-2006 (RED/BLUE)

This film contains Japanese Pop Star GACKT's music videos that have been released from 1999-2006. Gackt is one of the most popular J-pop stars in North America and Asia. In 1995, Gackt started his career as a vocalist, lyricist and pianist of the Visual-Kei or Visual Rock band Malice Mizer. Gackt launched his solo career on May 12, 1999 with the release of the EP Mizerable. Several albums, singles and videos have since followed. Gackt's most recent solo release is the single "Returner ~Yami no Shuen~", released on June 20, 2007.

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