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Otakon 2018 Guest Request

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Not really.

In general, Japan is far less forgiving of certain types of scandals than we are.  A minor drug offense or sex scandal can destroy a thriving career in Japan, whereas in the west, it's almost expected. (Sadly)

You might think "oh, they're not working now, they should be easier to get" -- but then there's this: do you want to keep talking about a scandal that damaged your career, or do you want to retreat for a while and let it blow over?

It also depends on the nature of the scandal, and how that person and/or their representatives are handling it.  In Hirano's case, the scandal was that she allegedly slept with band members, something that frankly is at best probably no more than a violation of company policy. Personally, I would not be too concerned by consensual naughtiness between adults, and there don't appear to be any laws broken in her case.

Watsuki-sensei is, frankly, an awkward situation. While I haven't met him personally, I consider his wife a friend.  I haven't talked to her much since this situation came up, and have avoided the topic.  It's possible the situation is less clear than it appears from sensational headlines, but it certainly puts a damper on the chances of him coming.  In the end, Mr Watsuki was fined, but his manga resumes next month, which likely means that the situation wasn't considered a career-ending mistake.  Even so, it would require some careful consideration, because we aim at an all-ages market and someone known to have possessed photos of underaged girls is probably not the best choice.

From a practical perspective, that sort of conviction might prove an obstacle to travel here, given how much more strict US authorities have been lately --- but even if he were completely exonerated, he is a working manga-ka and they can be incredibly hard to borrow for a week.   So it's a moot point.

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I am sorry but inviting him should be out of the question. He was in possession of child pornography. There are children at the con. 

I know it’s a moot point but you don’t need to explain any other reason except the above. 

 

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On 6/1/2018 at 12:02 AM, Kirarakim said:

I am sorry but inviting him should be out of the question. He was in possession of child pornography. There are children at the con. 

I know it’s a moot point but you don’t need to explain any other reason except the above. 

 

The question was whether a scandal might make some guests (and one in particular) easier to get, which is why I answered as I did.  

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That was a massive guest announce yesterday, and interesting that Cherami Leigh is being brought over courtesy Aniplex and not Funimation.  Wonder what that entails regarding the former's Otakon plans.

Now if you hons can finally get Colleen Clickenbeard over, that would ice the cake.

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I’m on a MONKEY MAJIK kick lately. I’d love to see them perform here. They’ve not performed at a con or really anywhere in the states that I’m aware of. They did the theme recently for Cyborg 009: Call of Justice.

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18 hours ago, Aresef said:

I’m on a MONKEY MAJIK kick lately. I’d love to see them perform here. They’ve not performed at a con or really anywhere in the states that I’m aware of. They did the theme recently for Cyborg 009: Call of Justice.

Me too! But, though we tried a few times, it never worked out schedule wise.  They did a show up in Canada, and I believe they worked with Yoshida Bros on at least one occasion.

 

 

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1 hour ago, alabaster said:

Me too! But, though we tried a few times, it never worked out schedule wise.  They did a show up in Canada, and I believe they worked with Yoshida Bros on at least one occasion.

 

 

Right, they played at the Japanese embassy there, but never south of the border. And they did do a song with Yoshida Brothers. It's good to know they're on the radar, even if it doesn't work out this year.

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2 hours ago, Aresef said:

Right, they played at the Japanese embassy there, but never south of the border. And they did do a song with Yoshida Brothers. It's good to know they're on the radar, even if it doesn't work out this year.

No longer my call these days, but always wise to remember that "we want them" is rarely enough to make the difference.  Popular acts don't always have openings during our con, and we are batting against aggressive summer tours that are often very lucrative for the artists and their labels.  (We are *cheapskates* in this country, and it is rarely profitable for Japanese acts to come here for one-off shows.)

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1 minute ago, alabaster said:

No longer my call these days, but always wise to remember that "we want them" is rarely enough to make the difference.  Popular acts don't always have openings during our con, and we are batting against aggressive summer tours that are often very lucrative for the artists and their labels.  (We are *cheapskates* in this country, and it is rarely profitable for Japanese acts to come here for one-off shows.)

Thanks for elaborating. Like if Oreskaband had to choose between Otakon a few years back and going back on the Warped tour, management would probably choose door No. 2, I hear ya.

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6 minutes ago, Aresef said:

Thanks for elaborating. Like if Oreskaband had to choose between Otakon a few years back and going back on the Warped tour, management would probably choose door No. 2, I hear ya.

Well, yeah, sort of.  Businesses and artists make such decisions based on short and long term goals. But cost is increasingly part of it, as is competition and everything else. Scheduling has always been a challenge too.

There's LOTS of things that factor into those decisions.  Being paid is certainly one of them.  Increasingly, it makes more sense for bands to plan a tour rather than just one-off appearances.  First, because the biggest expense is getting here and back in the first place, and then, because the costs of obtaining visas for performing have become quite a big deal -- they're much stricter than they used to be, and it's costlier.  That part alone has been averaging $8-15k depending on how many members there are, and it's harder to get them, which means more reliance on services that add a premium.

Acts are often interested but have competing offers, or plans for summer tours or recording, or they just can't make the numbers work.

 

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I have collected director autographed movie posters through Otakon over the years and several years back I acquired the poster for the anohana movie, 'just in case'. I am quite excited at the chance to add that poster to my collection with Tatsuyuki Nagai's autograph. 

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:D

You have no idea how long I've been waiting to see Josh Grelle come to the Otakon.  Excite!!  Thank you deerly hons!!

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On 6/20/2018 at 8:14 PM, CocoFaerie said:

:D

You have no idea how long I've been waiting to see Josh Grelle come to the Otakon.  Excite!!  Thank you deerly hons!!

I too am VERY pleased to see Josh Grelle coming!  Same with Cherami.  She's such a sweetheart.  And I'm especially hyped that Bryce Papenbrook is coming back (He's the man!).  I can also say the same regarding Max Mittelman.  And when the staff announced Lucien Dodge, I had the feeling they'd also invite Erica Mendez.  For those that don't know- Lucien and Erica are dating.  Whenever staff at a con invite one half of a voice actor couple, it's kind of only fair that the other half be invited, too, more often than not.  It's the exact case with Lex Lang and Sandy Fox, Travis Willingham and Laura Bailey, Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt, and recently in the last few years- Steve Blum and Mary Elizabeth McGlynn (They're ENGAGED now!).

With Bryce and Josh coming, I wonder if there's going to be a bunch of Attack on Titan related stuff going on.  Considering the fact that season 3 will be airing this summer.  It would be more fitting to have 1 or 2 other AOT related peeps.  Like Trina Nishimura (Mikasa), or better yet- Matt Mercer (Levi).  I also wonder if they have one or two other female dub actors left to announce.  Like Trina, as I've said, or even someone like Cristina Vee, Kira Buckland, Erika Harlacher, or even Xanthe Hyunh.  I would've loved to see Jamie Marchi and Monica Rial come, but unfortunately, they were already invited to another con that goes on the same weekend as Otakon.  Either way, I'm very content with Bryce, Todd, Cherami, Josh, and Max coming, so whoever kind of guests they have left to announce is okay with me.

And a couple of quick questions: Since we have the Final Fantasy orchestral shows this year, are there a few specific reasons why the Anisong World Matsuri isn't coming back?  I'm sure whatever reason they are, they can't be said, but I am still curious, regardless.  Was it too much for you guys to afford after last year?  Did the people that organize the tour choose a different con to host the east coast side of the event?

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A major one for me would be Kenichi Yoshida (Eureka Seven and Gundam Reconguista). As far as I'm aware, he's never been to the states. Also could work in relation to promoting the new Eureka Seven movies.

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Every year I am simply amazed at all of the top tier seiyuu Anime Expo gets. This year they have 10+ seiyuu. All I want is for Otakon to get at least a few semi-relevant seiyuu which seems basically impossible due to being on the east coast and all the other reasons staff has said before. It's just so sad though to see another convention getting people I would LOVE to see more than anything. Just another reason why this year will be my last Otakon... the lack of quality guests is so disappointing.

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AX gets tons of great guests, sure, but God help you if you want an autograph from them. It looks like the majority of them aren't even doing autographs at all this year. And a bunch of them are industry signings which had tickets distributed online a week before the con even started. The rest, you'll have to get in line at 2 AM and hope there are still tickets left by the time you reach the ticket table. So yeah, just remember that the grass always seems greener on the other side of the fence.

That being said, this year's guest lineup is pretty disappointing to me as well, and I'm strongly considering skipping. I saw there's some YouTube personality as a guest now even, Mr. CreepyPasta? Who thought that was a good idea? How is that even relevant to Otakon?

Edited by Dostovei Illuminas

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20 hours ago, Dostovei Illuminas said:

I saw there's some YouTube personality as a guest now even, Mr. CreepyPasta? Who thought that was a good idea? How is that even relevant to Otakon?

Right? Can we get a justification for this one? How on earth does Mr. CreepyPasta even tangentially relate to Otakon's mission of "celebrating Asian pop culture"? e_e Apparently he has made "small appearances in anime", lol.

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I am excited about the Dragonball North American tour and my friend is looking forward to the Studio Trigger guests but Otakon really hasn’t had what I consider “top tier” guests in some years now. I know Otakon isn’t Anime Expo but they used to get a few really big guests every year too and in my opinion it’s just not what it once was for me personally. 

Honestly if Otakon hadn’t moved to DC I would have stopped going but now that my friend lives in DC it’s a much cheaper weekend without the hotel cost so it’s still something fun to do with my friend every summer. 

 

 

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Even though I'm someone who primarily goes for the dub actors, even I find it quite disheartening how AX is so big enough that it can afford to have that many Japanese guests.  Otakon on the other hand gets so very few.  Like a couple of seiyuu, and just one or maybe even two directors and/or producers.  As well as whatever musical acts they could get.  While I am personally happy and very well satisfied with many of the guests the staff are having for this year, I actually share the same sentiments as Kirarakim about how the con hasn't really what some would consider "top tier" in recent years, to be honest.

And dare I say, I would argue that they almost run themselves ragged.  Why do I say that?  Well, ever since 2014, they had a second con to run and experiment more, Otakon Vegas, as we all know.  While it is cool that they can expand on what they do to another state, and things like that, at the same time, I feel that it's hurting them in the long run.  Because that means they aren't pouring their full attention to their main attraction, and as a result, not exactly wooing as many people with somethings like they did in previous years.  This is of course coming from someone who hasn't attending Otakon Vegas (But I'd love to!).

Another thing is that from what I personal see is that the staff have become increasingly cost conscious.  They know that many guests don't come cheap, and the guests many of us often ask for I'm sure are often some of the pricier ones.

And I know I've said this before, and while I did get myself trouble for saying so one time- the staff are quite picky about the guests they invite.  And it seems that in recent years, it's progressively getting worse and worse.  Sure we know guests cost money to bring in, but certain choices in guests can times not sit that well with some people.  And I know Otakon does take risks with what they do regarding choices in the guests, some risks DO backfire.  Like in 2015, where they had Draftking and Oreskaband.  I totally get the reason behind their inviting them- To make them more well known, and spread word about them.  It's practically no different than any other music artist, regardless of where they came from.  But (in my point of view, at least) with a con as big as Otakon is, there is one major key factor that strongly plays with musical acts- Familiarity.  And since Otakon, for an east coast con was able to pull off bringing in mega hit musical acts such as JAM Project and TM Revolution, had huge familiarity with many people already.  But because Draftking and Oreskaband didn't have very much of that, that was a risk that didn't pay off for them.

I do love attending Otakon, I really do.  It was the very first anime con that I ever attended, when I started doing cons in 2011, and have attended the con each year since then.  But in the most recent years, and I do hate to say this: Otakon has become one of those "Hit or Miss" kind of cons.

Like I said, while I'm happy and content with the guests Otakon has gotten for this year, there are still some lingering issues going about it.  Whether it be from fans' own feelings about it, or otherwise.

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10 hours ago, UzumakiWarlord said:

But because Draftking and Oreskaband didn't have very much of that, that was a risk that didn't pay off for them.

In what tangible way did that "not pay off for them"?

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Oh, Shoji Kawamori just got announced... Okay, I'll attend to meet him. 

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Good lord. Yeah, going to just bring autograph bait for a bunch and take what the schedule allows (priority is defintely on Kawamori and Nagai).

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Kawamori's been on the list for several years, but kept having scheduling conflicts -- glad they were able to make it work for our Mecha themed year!

 

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I know it’s a little late.  But would it be possible to have the Adventures in Voice Acting mini-workshops, if not full open voice acting auditions, come back to Otakon if some of its staff (Tony Oliver, Julie Maddalena, etc.) get invited to the con in the future?  That sort of guest-related because of the aforementioned voice artists doing workshops for it.

Also, have some of the people who worked on Bang Zoom!’s review show “Anime TV” appear.  Besides Johnny Young Bosch, Cristina Vee, Kaiji Tang, and Amanda C. Miller, there are other people like Jonathan Meza (Saito from “The Familiar of Zero”, cohost of Otaku Movie Anatomy).  I know that show’s no longer relevant.  But maybe have representation for it or acknowledge its existence.

Also, maybe have some more talent from the Texas or New York Branches.  Like Brittany Lauda, Michele Knotz (who I heard did make a cameo last year), Jill Harris, etc.

 

 

 

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On 7/6/2018 at 8:50 AM, Krabstarr said:

In what tangible way did that "not pay off for them"?

ORESKABAND is still going strong, but Draft King seems to not have done anything relatively recently. 

Also wondering if there will be any other musical guests at Otakon this year. 

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1 hour ago, TheBigN said:

ORESKABAND is still going strong, but Draft King seems to not have done anything relatively recently. 

Also wondering if there will be any other musical guests at Otakon this year. 

Since the schedule has been released, I'm going to guess "probably not."

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Otakon has already said no matsuri type event this year. Schedule being released I sincerely doubt there will be any more musical guests. I actually doubt there will he any more guests announced at all. Maybe one or two last minute ink driers but that's probably it.

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On 7/6/2018 at 7:16 PM, Dostovei Illuminas said:

Oh, Shoji Kawamori just got announced... Okay, I'll attend to meet him. 

I'll be there. Honestly he's the only guest that's been announced(other than Uematsu and I got my VIP for that) that has me really excited. He's responsible for a chunk of my childhood and I'm pretty amped to meet him.

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On 7/11/2018 at 3:37 PM, rotinoma said:

Is there an anisong type guest this year at otakon?

I imagine the big ticket guests have all been announced at this point, what with the schedule being out.

However, if you have an itch to scratch, Anisong World Matsuri is coming to Anime NYC with Hironobu Kageyama, Hiroshi Kitadani, Konomi Suzuki, Morning Musume, TRUE, Luna Haruna and Shoko Nakagawa, with more guests tipped.

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On 7/11/2018 at 1:54 PM, The Otakutopian said:

I know it’s a little late.  But would it be possible to have the Adventures in Voice Acting mini-workshops, if not full open voice acting auditions, come back to Otakon if some of its staff (Tony Oliver, Julie Maddalena, etc.) get invited to the con in the future?  That sort of guest-related because of the aforementioned voice artists doing workshops for it.

Also, have some of the people who worked on Bang Zoom!’s review show “Anime TV” appear.  Besides Johnny Young Bosch, Cristina Vee, Kaiji Tang, and Amanda C. Miller, there are other people like Jonathan Meza (Saito from “The Familiar of Zero”, cohost of Otaku Movie Anatomy).  I know that show’s no longer relevant.  But maybe have representation for it or acknowledge its existence.

Also, maybe have some more talent from the Texas or New York Branches.  Like Brittany Lauda, Michele Knotz (who I heard did make a cameo last year), Jill Harris, etc.

 

 

 

Not ruling anything out, but:

One issue is that the gear they typically use for Adventures in Voice Acting is pulled from the BangZoom studios in LA.  Tony's certainly a friend of our con (he's been several times), but that's part of why that particular workshop hasn't worked out so well here. 

BTW,  JYB is a guest this year, and we've had Cristina and Kaiji before as well.

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Ever since I joined staff I've been curious as to the minutiae and dynamics of GR and didn't really think about this until now. But Alabaster I'm curious as to who your white whale would be? 

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On 7/30/2018 at 4:56 PM, alabaster said:

Not ruling anything out, but:

One issue is that the gear they typically use for Adventures in Voice Acting is pulled from the BangZoom studios in LA.  Tony's certainly a friend of our con (he's been several times), but that's part of why that particular workshop hasn't worked out so well here. 

BTW,  JYB is a guest this year, and we've had Cristina and Kaiji before as well.

Thanks for clarifying the reason why the Adventures in Voice Acting workshop haven’t been at the con in a while.  It’s too bad that that particular workshop didn’t work out well there.  Well, if not AiVA, then maybe one of the other studios could lend their services to Otakon.  Like Kocha Sound (with Brittany Lauda and/or Matt Shipman), Sound Cadence (with Amber Lee Connors and/or Marissa Lenti) or StarMan Studios (with Bryan Massey, Jennifer Alyx, and/or P.M. Semyour).  Although, the few anime they’ve dubbed were mostly niche anime so far.  But it’s a thought.

I know that Mr. JYB, Ms. Vee, and Mr. Tang have been to a Otakon before.  And I’m glad that they have.

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On 7/30/2018 at 2:28 PM, Aresef said:

I imagine the big ticket guests have all been announced at this point, what with the schedule being out.

However, if you have an itch to scratch, Anisong World Matsuri is coming to Anime NYC with Hironobu Kageyama, Hiroshi Kitadani, Konomi Suzuki, Morning Musume, TRUE, Luna Haruna and Shoko Nakagawa, with more guests tipped.

Thanks for pointing this out that’s an awesome line up and look it’s on the East Coast too 

 

Going to definitely try to get tickets for the Saturday concert 

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