ANIME WEEKEND ATLANTA works hard to bring you the best offerings of Japanese animation possible. From classic works to the newest titles, we promise to have something for all kinds of anime fans in our viewing rooms. Last year, we premiered more new anime than ever and plan to continue that trend at AWA 2013. In addition we’re running with dual themes in the rooms this year (and throughout the convention overall.) .
The first theme will focus on Astro Boy, the iconic creation of ‘The God Of Manga” Osamu Tezuka. Astro Boy debuted 50 years ago (under the name "Mighty Atom") and changed the production methods of TV animation in Japan. Out of respect for what Tezuka accomplished in doing this series, we will be celebrating not only Astro Boy, but some of his other creations in the video rooms this year. So come learn about and enjoy some of these classics and you may just net yourself a prize in the process. Stay tuned to this page for more information. .
Our secondary theme is 'School Years'. Remember all those fun times in and out of the classroom with your friends? As many of you reading this likely know, a lot of good anime focus on teens attending school of some sort and facing crazy issues, so we’ll be featuring some of the best titles from this setting as part of our schedule. .
For those with big anime appetites, we have some fun marathons we’ll be showing at night. Our 'MAAAAAAAAAnime For Guys' focuses mainly on classic action movies for adults. We’ll also be having some more family-friendly programming we’ll be incorporating throughout the weekend. In addition, there is a room dedicated to the best in Live-Action Asian cinema, so if martial arts, crime dramas and / or Tokusatsu / Power Rangers-styled shows are your thing, we'll have some cool stuff for you as well. Details on these screenings and other events will be appearing on this page in the coming months. .
This is where we could use a bit of help from all of you reading this page. If there are anime past and present that you think would fit these themes or are just ones that would be fun to watch on a big screen with your friends and other total strangers, drop us a note with your favorites to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the forums at http://www.awa-con.com/phpbb/ and post titles in the Video Rooms section and we’ll look into getting them up for you. .
Anime Weekend Atlanta was saddened to hear of the passing of accomplished manga translator Toren Smith. As both a fan and organizer, Smith’s work laid much of the foundation for the way Americans would be able to gain access to anime manga. He was the first to create an anime festival at Baycon ’86 in San Jose, California, helping to not only acquire titles but to also create a guide booklet presenting pictures and descriptions for many anime previously unknown to American audiences. (This booklet remains a particular inspiration for the AWA program guide.) Much of the enthusiasm from this festival would eventually lead to the creation of one of the first anime conventions, entitled simply enough Anime Con ’91, also in San Jose. .
Smith was also a pioneer in getting manga translated for wide distribution to American comic readers, initially with Viz Communications in the 80s, and later Dark Horse Comics, under the label Studio Proteus. Through his efforts, manga such as Appleseed, Ah My Goddess and Outlanders became household names in the early to mid 90s. He was able to accomplish this by taking long trips to Japan during the 80s, and along the way became friends with a group of animators who would eventually form Gainax, the studio behind “Wings of Honneamise” and “Neon Genesis Evangelion.” Smith became such good friends with these people that they gave him a small speaking role and named a character for him in the mecha drama “Aim For The Top! Gunbuster!” .
For everything he contributed to relations between American fans and Japanese media, Anime Weekend Atlanta salutes Toren Smith, in the hopes his legacy inspires others who wish to educate themselves on the potential knowledge and entertainment that manga and anime can bring to open minds. .