August 12-15 was AnimeFest in Dallas and this was my 16th time attending. Wow! Where did all the years go?!
I’m not going to post the pictures I took, since you can see them all at my instagram. Onwards to my weekend experience.
- Autographs – Austin Tindle, Erica Mendez, Lisle Wilkerson, and Mark Crilley
Instead of having my badge signed, I decided to have all the guests sign their page in the program book.
- Meet Fumi Hirano
Fumi Hirano is mostly known for her role as Lum in Urusei Yatsura, but her current voice acting roles are in Rin-ne and GATE. During the panel, we got to learn about how Hirano-san started as a voice actor and what she’s learned throughout her 30+ years in the industry.
- From Fan to Professional
This was a Q & A panel with Erica Mendez about how she went from working on fan projects as a voice actor to now working professionally.
- Lights, Camera, Romance (Backstage Pass)
Sake Visual owner, Apphia Yu/Ayu Sakata, was the panel host/moderator for the Backstage Pass panel. For those who don’t know, Backstage Pass is an otome visual novel game developed by Sake Visual and it’s fully voiced! Three of the voice actors: Erica Mendez, Micah Solusod, and Austin Tindle, were present. Apphia had some really good scenarios for the actors. My favorite of the scenarios was: If you could turn yourself into an otome character with a route, what type would you be and what would your bad ending be? All of their answers were HILARIOUS.
- Women Who Werk
The panelists were 4 women who work as comic writer, illustrators/comic artists, animators, and musicians. They gave good points of what it’s like to work in a male dominated industry and tips for getting yourself out there. I also chimed in on the discussion with my experience as a freelance letterer.
- Autographs – Apphia Yu/Ayu Sakata, Austin Tindle, Lindsay Seidel, Lisle Wilkerson, Mark Crilley, & Micah Solusod
Since I attended the Backstage Pass panel, they passed out postcards at the end for the autograph session. Of course I had to get that signed, so who cares if I got the same signatures more than once.
- Self-Publishing Comics and Manga in the Digital Age!
Drew and his wife, Jamie, hosted this Q & A panel. Drew is the creator of a webcomic called Halloween Man. It was interesting to hear how they do their business through comiXology and how they started out.
- FUNimation Industry Panel
They started with a list of all their summer simulcasts and their corresponding broadcast dubs along with previews for the most popular titles. Upcoming home video releases along with the ones available at the booth in the dealer room. New title acquisitions were presented, which were the same ones that were announced the previous day at Otakon. The only thing that surprised me was the upcoming home video announcements including: Code Geass Collector’s Edition, Code Geass: Akito boxed set, Ergo Proxy 10th anniversary collector’s edition, D.Gray-man Episodes 52-104 (FINALLY!!), and Escaflowne Limited Collector’s Edition/Standard Edition.
- Manga Lettering Workshop
Started out great and then 20 minutes in Photoshop decided it wants to be temperamental. I winged it, but still was frustrating because I couldn’t follow along in my workbook. I had a total of 15 people stay through till the end. I recognized some faces from last year, which was nice to see.
- Working in the Manga Industry
I had a pretty good turnout for a 9 AM panel. I started late due to the doors being locked and the hotel staff never came to unlock them, so they had everyone enter through the side door that was unlocked. I was surprised at the questions I did get for SO early in the morning. I didn’t have to ramble as much as I did last year. In total, 10 people stuck it out till the end.
- Manga to Anime: Tokyo Ghoul, One-Punch Man, and My Hero Academia – Ayana Nishino, Chikashi Kubota, Kazuhiro Miwa, Shingo Natsume, & Shuhei Morita
Interview style panel with the interpreter/moderator asking the guests questions and interpreting their answers to us. It was quite interesting to learn the process that the anime directors/animators go through to produce an anime from a manga. I also learned that it’s easier to pitch an idea for an anime if its based on a manga versus pitching an original concept.
- One-Punch Man
I closed out the night by watching the English dub of OPM. I like the cast Viz chose for the dub. Wish I could’ve gone to the director commentary the night before, but I was in another panel.
I had originally planned to stay till the closing ceremonies, but with how the rain was falling I came to conclusion that it’d be best to drive home earlier. It was a smart choice because what normally would’ve taken 2.5 hours took almost 5 hours.
One thing that was hard this year was wanting to attend SO many panels, but could only choose one during that time. All-in-all AFest 2016 was just as fun as previous years and I’m looking forward to AFest 2017.