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A key piece of Manga/Anime history slides into the sunset, as ICv2 reports that Central Park Media has filed Chapter 7. Many will remember CPM as one of the trailblazers of the anime (Patlabor, Uetna, Grave of the Fireflies) and manga fields, with manga titles like Record of Lodoss War and Slayers, as well as being an early adapter of the boys love genre with the Be Beautiful imprint. Things began to go bad in one of the early manga slumps, however, and after the manga/anime supporting retailer Musicland went bankrupt in 2006. There was talk of a comeback, but it never really made much of an impact and now the company has filed the bankruptcy of no return. (Chapter 11 and 13 bankruptcies allow for reorganization, but Chapter 7 means the company is completely disbanded.)

According to ICv2, CPM reports assets of $126,282 vs. secured liabilities of $908,173 and unsecured liabilities of $277,531. It’s a sad end for a company that did much to promote the rise of Japanese entertainment in the US.

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  1. I worked for John O’Donnell’s Central Park Media briefly years ago, and this is a sad turn of events indeed. Not only was CPM an innovator in developing anime’s popularity in America, but, frankly, the world is a more interesting place with JOD running a company in it. I hope he, his family, and whatever remaining staff may have existed are doing as well as can be expected at such a time.

  2. I would not be where I am today if it weren’t for the help of JOD and CPM. So many of the people I’ve met and relationships I’ve developed are from when I worked there. The same can be said for a lot of other people around the comic/manga/anime industry today. The company brought together some of the best & brightest and bonded us. That was part of the CPM’s strength. Despite whatever happens to the company, we’ll always have JOD to thank for what he did for us.

  3. “Here’s a financial news article on film production company bankruptcies, and a possible underlying factor.”

    That Crain’s article is interesting, and I don’t doubt that New York’s tax policy toward film & television production has some effect on industry businesses there. But reports and rumors of CPM’s business woes have apparently been circulating for years, so in the specific case of this specific business, I suspect that current governmental tax policies and the recent recessionary economy are not necessarily primary factors in CPM’s bankruptcy filing.

    Which is not to say that this isn’t a tragedy for all those involved. It’s just a tragedy whose causes are not necessarily the same causes as many other current business tragedies you hear about.

  4. Not a day goes by where Mr. O’Donnell’s impact on my professional life is not felt. Among the things I learned from him, is that every crisis features a component of opportunity. I’m confident that hw will seek and find the opportunity here.

    Steve Yacht, CPM Alum 1992-1997
    Boulder, Colorado
    [email protected]

  5. CPM produced “The Silk Road” some 30 years ago. Can anyone help me in getting a copy of the DVD programme.



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