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Bandai America Summons BLUE DRAGON for a Mythical Journey in the Action Figure Category
Boldly-Styled Action Figures and Fierce Creatures Battle in This New Property Featuring Character Designs by Manga Mastermind, Akira Toriyama

Blue Dragon (NEW YORK, NY – FEBRUARY 17, 2008) – With its expertise in creating successful action figures brands, such as Power Rangers and Ben 10, Bandai America Inc. perfectly captures the excitement of BLUE DRAGON, the highly-anticipated new animation series from VIZ Media, LLC. With character designs by famed Japanese manga artist Akira Toriyama (who also created the acclaimed Dragon Ball series, another Bandai America toy property), the brand is set to debut in July 2008 with a fierce lineup of collectible action figures for kids to play out battles to save the world.

Based on the concept developed by the legendary Hironobu Sakaguchi (the creator of Final Fantasy), BLUE DRAGON has been translated into a rich and fantastical animation series set to debut in the U.S. in 2008. The heroic series follows the adventures of the Seven Soldiers of Light who must awaken the magical Shadow, or mythical creature, within themselves to overcome a despotic power and bring peace to their world. “Bandai America is an innovative company with a proven legacy of introducing high quality and unique toys to the North American market,” states Linda Espinosa, vice president of content management, VIZ Media. “We expect kids to respond enthusiastically to BLUE DRAGON’S action-packed story of overcoming conflicts through adventure and friendship.”

“Also known for creating consistently high demand for popular Japanese toy properties like Power Rangers and the Tamagotchi® ‘virtual pet’ in the U.S., Bandai America is excited to create a must-have collectible lineup for kids based on BLUE DRAGON,” said Colleen Sherfey, senior director of marketing, Bandai America Inc. “This dynamic property has much to leverage since it’s based on the fastest-selling RPG video game in Japan and has two famed Japanese creators, well-known to fans in the U.S., behind it.”

Beginning this Fall, Bandai America summons the excitement of BLUE DRAGON with its debut collectible action figure lineup. The dynamic fun starts with the highly-detailed 3” figures of all the show characters in fierce poses, accompanied by their translucent Shadows. The battle-ready 4” figures have a unique button-activated light-projection feature that summons the characters’ inner Shadows by projecting their image onto any flat surface. The large-scale 7” Shadow figures showcase battle action capabilities, such as a sword-swinging arm, accompanied by light and sound effects. Kids can re-live the exciting battles from the show by watching their favorite Shadow characters fight evil on the included bonus DVD of an episode of BLUE DRAGON.

For more information about BLUE DRAGON, go to www.BlueDragon.viz.com.


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About Bandai America Inc.
A leader in introducing Japanese toy trends to the United States, Bandai America Incorporated is a subsidiary of NAMCO BANDAI Holdings (USA) Inc., an entity that resulted from the integration of Namco Ltd. and Bandai Co. Ltd. of Japan. Global interests encompass six strategic business units: toys and hobby (toys, models, apparel and sundries), amusement facilities, game content (home and arcade console gaming), network (mobile phone and PC content), visual and music content (including home entertainment), and an affiliated business group. Bandai America is the manufacturer and master toy licensee of some of the most popular brands in children’s toys and entertainment today, including Power Rangers, Ben 10™, Dragon Ball Z®, Digimon, BLUE DRAGON™ and Tamagotchi®. The company is headquartered in Cypress, California and information is available at www.Bandai.com.

About VIZ Media
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga 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 www.VIZ.com.