Viz Media Titles Named as Finalists for Inaugural American Anime Awards

San Francisco, CA, February 13, 2007 – VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), one of the entertainment industry's most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, has announced that several of its popular anime and manga properties have been named finalists in the inaugural American Anime Awards. Comedy, action, science fiction and children’s titles from VIZ Media's repertoire are all represented on this year's ballot.

NARUTO received the most nominations in multiple categories for Best Actor, Best Actresses, Best Cast, Best DVD Package Design, Best Long Series and Best Manga. BLEACH is a close second with multiple nominations including Best Actor, Best DVD Package Design, Best Anime Theme Song and Best Manga Series.

Other VIZ Media properties named as finalists include DEATH NOTE (Best Manga Series), INUYASHA (Best Cast, Best Anime Feature), RANMA ½ (Best Comedy Anime, Best Anime Short Series), ZATCH BELL (Best Actor and Actress in a Comedy) and POKéMON Movie 8: LUCARIO AND THE MYSTERY OF MEW (Best Anime Feature), for which VIZ Media is the distributor.

The winners will reflect the votes of over 43,000 fans that made their preferences known for the hottest anime and manga properties in North America. The pop culture business news site oversaw the online voting held throughout the month of January and results will be announced at the gala ceremony.

The American Anime Awards ceremony will take place Saturday February 24 at the New Yorker Hotel in Midtown Manhattan in conjunction with the 2007 New York Comic-con, at which VIZ Media is a major participant. Several key executives and creative personnel from the company are expected to attend. Fans can enjoy a special broadcast event on Anime Network on March 23 (broadcast) and April 12 (VOD). The two-hour program will include pre- and post-ceremony coverage, commentary by various industry luminaries and the inaugural award ceremony.

"VIZ Media is elated to have such a diverse collection of titles nominated for the 2007 American Anime Awards," states Evelyn Dubocq, Director, Public Relations, VIZ Media. "This is a direct reflection of the varied range of tastes and people who have embraced anime and manga across North America. These awards are an important milestone because they not only recognize the validity of these genres to the larger entertainment arena, but will also give accolades to the companies and many talented people who work so hard to bring these series to fans."

About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga (graphic novel) publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan's largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan Production Co., Ltd. (ShoPro Japan), VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America and a global licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including, magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, videos, DVDs, audio soundtracks and develops and markets animated entertainment from initial production, television placement and distribution, to merchandise licensing and promotions for audiences and consumers of all ages.

Contact VIZ Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and web site at