The anime and manga industry is starting out on rocky footing this year with news early this week that Bandai Entertainment is immediately ceasing operations as a publisher of new titles. This includes the cancellation of their upcoming releases. Hopefully we’re just getting the negative industry stuff out of the way early to pave the way for a stronger 2012 – fingers crossed, right?
The press release Bandai Entertainment sent out included the full list of manga titles now cancelled:
Code Geass: Renya
Lucky Star Boo Boo Kagaboo
Mobile Suit Gundam 00I
Tales of the Abyss: Jade’s Secret Memories
Some of these series were already mid-way through their run while others, like Tales of the Abyss: Jade’s Secret Memories, hadn’t started yet. Bandai noted their existing catalog – meaning those already released – will remain in print and available until the company’s licenses expire. That said, however, if there are any titles you want, I say it’s still best to pick them up now just in case (though you could say the same for any titles from any company – you never know!).
Personally I hadn’t read any of Bandai Entertainment’s manga titles but that’s because they tailored to fans of the company’s anime franchises for which I wasn’t really interested. Regardless, it’s a big shame that we’re seeing another manga publisher forced to close its doors. The most consistent experience I had with Bandai was that the company was never the most communicative about it’s manga publishing. Hope for a change in this was short-lived after their new manga-focused website quickly dried out in regards to updates. Learning just recently they only had five full-time employees – most of whom have now unfortunately been laid off – really shed a light on how tight the division was run though.
Credit goes to AnimeNewsNetwork for the news. They followed up with an interview with Bandai’s executive producer, Ken Iyadomi. It sheds more light on the reason behind the closure which came down from the higher ups in Japan this past October.