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MENAFN - Khaleej Times - 05/05/2014
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(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Japanese animation creators named after by hope to introduce virtual music artists to the uae

the named after by team

japanese cartoons betterknown to fans as anime have taken the world by storm thanks to today’s easily accessible media platforms such as youtube and google. the uae is not far from the rave with expos such as the middle east film and comic convention and animeyhem.

however the region has yet to experience one of japan’s pop wonders — 3d virtual musicians.

think animated characters that can stand on stage as three-dimensional figures and entertain a live audience. the venture takes a great deal of creative and technical effort but tokyo-based media hub named after by co. ltd is ready to bring the concept to the uae.

the company specialising in tv animation character design and computer graphics (cg) recently introduced a five-member group called lovepledge as part of an otome (visual novel) game of the same name targeted at young women. the game genre released in october 2013 across various app stores including itunes and google play is a simulation that gives users a series of options and stages to complete to get closer to the character and form happy relationships.

in a bid to prove that music knows no barriers named after by team followed up with a lovepledge soundtrack featuring songs performed by renowned voice actors — ryotaro okiayu who lent his voice to byakuya kuchiki from popular anime series bleach and takehito koyasu who voiced jojo’s bizarre adventure’s main character dio brando.

according to asuka fukushi president and ceo of named after by there are over 35000 lovepledge users out of which 7205 are from the middle east alone — the second largest chunk of the pie after the us with 20975 users.

“most of our players in the middle east region are from saudi arabia. there is a lot of interest from the female audience especially since the game is like an escape from their daily activities. we hope to bring these favourite characters to life and hold concerts where the artists will sing dance and perform just as any real artist” she said.

while these games are available on popular consoles players highly prefer to access it through their smart phones.

the virtual idols are also set to star in their own anime series exclusive to youtube voiced by “seiyuus” or voice actors of dragon ball yu-gi-oh slam dunk toriko and the new prince of tennis fame.

“there are a lot of technical aspects involved in creating characters. but we want to bring them to life for our fans across the world” said cg director naoya fukushi.

named after by is currently on the lookout for a music label and distributors in the region to promote japanese music and goods.

untapped potential of japanese media content in the uae :

“in the us and european market as well as in the asian market people have become familiar with japanese media content in the form of gaming film animation etc” kotaro kodama executive director japan external trade and organisation (jetro) dubai said.

while there is a potential audience for it in the middle east with residents who spend time discovering japanese media contents through the world wide web commercialisation of products is still to take off in a big way.

“we at jetro aim to strengthen our promotional activities by participating in exhibitions and events with japanese companies and try to consolidate their presence for consumers in these following years. we also hope to organise a delegation from osaka prefecture this autumn and exhibit in the big entertainment show 2014 and also collaborate with other japanese independent exporters in our booth.” farhana?khaleejtimes.com


Khaleej Times

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