Our Day 2 started off with Stu Levy’s documentary, Pray for Japan, which was completely funded through kind donations. They had showings in several theaters across the US and did pretty well. I was glad they were showing it at AX as I missed them back in March. I have to say that I was a bit let down by the fact that the screening room was pretty much empty though. I know that just because you’re into anime doesn’t mean you’re interested in Japan or Japanese culture per se, so I guess the lack of an audience just further proved this unfortunate fact to me. It’s possible that most of them had already seen Pray for Japan, but I somehow find that hard to believe… After that we interviewed some people (these will be up soon!) and Yuna and I decided to watch the next film, Hotarubi no Mori e, while Jason and Ellie hit up the Tiger & Bunny Panel.
I thought the Pray for Japan documentary captured the Japanese spirit very well in that you felt the sense of stoicism, but I wasn’t a fan of the transitions with dramatic and depressing voice overs. I thought they were awkward because they came after footage of smiling volunteers and families who were feeding off of each others’ generosity.
Hotarubi no Mori e is a manga turned film directed by Takahiro Omori. It’s about Hotaru who visits her grandfather in the summertime and meets a human-like spirit, Gin, who can’t touch humans or he will disappear. Their friendship grows into something new as Hotaru gets older. We interviewed some guys after (sorry about not posting it. it was quite loud and the mic on the handycam wasn’t very good), and I think they were spot on when they said that the film is very Japanese. It’s difficult to describe, but once you see it, you’ll understand. They also mentioned that they had been doing walk-ins and this one was a gem they stumbled upon!
We headed over to the Madoka Magica panel after that, and boy was it packed! They were giving out Kyubey masks so the place was filled with Kyubeys. We have four of them to give away actually 🙂 They played a bunch of bloopers which was pretty hilarious. We’ll have interviews we did uploaded shortly!
Now I’ll leave you with more of our Miku pictures (and a crappy video I put together), because I know you guys want the Miku photos.