Izumi MATSUMOTO, Manga Guest of Honor
With an outstanding panel, a masterclass, signing sessions and an exhibit, manga fans have celebrated the 30th anniversary of Kimagure Orange Road with Izumi MATSUMOTO himself. He met them during many signing sessions. Like every year, Japan Expo also dedicated an exhibit to its Manga Guest of Honor: 30 years of Kimagure Orange Road.
On Friday, he unveiled the secrets of his success to some of his fans during a masterclass, and he was back on Sunday on the Japan Expo stage to go back over his career and his work. He ended the panel in a grand way by drawing live Madoka, Kimagure Orange Road’s heroine.
Kitarô KÔSAKA, Anime Guest of Honor
Animation also had pride of honor with someone who’s worked several times for the animation studio which has made all of dream one day. Key animator at first and later in charge of the animation on some of Studio Ghibli’s most striking films such as Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, or Howl's Moving Castle to mention only a few, Kitarô KÔSAKA met Japan Expo’s public for the first time during signing sessions.
He also gave a fascinating panel along with Masao MARUYAMA (Tokyo Godfathers, Metropolis), with whom he worked in 2003 on Nasu: Summer in Andalusia. To finish the conference, he made a live drawing, sketching characters from Sherlock Hound or Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind.
Daigo IKENO, Video Game Guest of Honor
Street Fighter fans were overjoyed with the coming of Daigo IKENO: chara-designer, illustrator and art director, he’s worked on this very popular license for more than 20 years. He’s met his fans and showed them his talent during Friday’s panel.
On top of many signing sessions, he went onto the Video Game Stage to talk about the design of Street Fighter characters. During the live drawing session, and at his fans’ request, he drew Ryu, and then Chun-Li.
Berryz Kobo x °C-ute, J-Music Guests of Honor
There were definitely more than one J-Music Guest of Honor of the 15th Impact with no less than 12 talented girls from the bands Berryz Kobo and °C-ute. And before Thursday night’s big show, during which they set the Live House stage on fire and enchanted the audience, they met their fans for signings, a handshake session and a panel.
YOSHIKI, Special Guest
For its 15th anniversary, Japan Expo also hosted an outstanding special guest: YOSHIKI, founder of the legend X-Japan, had come to offer unique and memorable moments. With photo sessions with fans, a show, and a panel, you had many opportunities to meet him and enjoy his talent.
During a showcase full of emotions, the creator of the first visual kei band showed that his talent goes far beyong that style and that he was also a classical music genius. And during the panel, there was a big surprise for the audience as YOSHIKI allowed one of you to win a trip for two to New York to attend X-Japan’s amazing show.