With the ongoing tragedy in eastern Japan unfolding before our eyes, it’s inevitable that there will be cancellations to many planned Anime/Manga events. Although Tokyo is not affected directly by the quake, given the difficult conditions — potential blackouts and crisis management– the Tokyo International Anime Fair 2011, which was to be held March 24-27 has been canceled, according to the website of the venue, the Big Site in Tokyo. According to posts on the Anime convention mailing list, the Big Site venue was damaged in the quake; in addition, air travel to Japan is being limited.
The Anime Contents Expo is also expected to be canceled.
ANN also reports that many manga releases are delayed or canceled in the wake of events.
Obviously the fate of shows is a minor matter in the greater crisis, but the manga/anime industries are as affected as any by the disaster. Anime News Network has had ongoing coverage, including a list of manga-ka/animators who are confirmed to be okay.
Viz Media released a statement yesterday:
The terrible events in Japan affects us all at VIZ Media directly, personally and professionally. Our hearts go out to those affected by the tragedy and the ongoing crisis, and we hope for a quick recovery. We know the people of Japan will persevere & prevail.
Sincere thanks to all those who have inquired about our parent companies, Shogakukan, Shueisha and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions. Our colleagues in Tokyo are safe and the situation is stabilizing, though resuming normal day-to-day business activities may take a little while. On a company level, we will be coordinating activities with our parent companies to support the disaster victims.
The victims of this tragedy are in our thoughts, and our gratitude goes out to all of the heroic people around the world pulling together to help them.
Many famed manga artists have been trying to buoy spirits with artwork of people keeping hopes up. For instance, manga giant Takehiko Inoue (SLAM DUNK) has a twit pic feed of lovely watercolors titled “Pray for Japan.” Anime News Network has a gallery of drawings by others, including Urasawa.
Brigid Alverson rounds up some more news.
We’ve been as stunned, heartbroken, and addicted to views of the carnage and ongoing nuclear crisis as everyone else. Japan is one of the great cultures on earth and we know they will persevere. Our thoughts go out to all the brave people helping others to survive, especially the very heroic workers at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant who have stayed on despite the radiation danger to attempt to prevent more damage.
Thanks to Isaac Alexander for help with this report.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.