Possible First US Eva Screening, Recorded Visit With Hayashibara!

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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Fri Nov 27, 2020 2:55 pm

View Original PostJoelcrNeto wrote:There's nothing interesting written there:

『TV版予告編(前番組最終話)』
TV-ban yokokuhen (zen bangumi saishū-banabi)

Translation:
TV edition preview (last episode of the previous program)

Thanks! I updated the initial post with your translation.

I figured it would be anticlimactic like that, but I'd rather know than not know, ya know?
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby JoelcrNeto » Sat Nov 28, 2020 11:40 am

View Original PostFreakyFilmFan4ever wrote:I figured it would be anticlimactic like that, but I'd rather know than not know, ya know?

Hahaha! This translation is really anticlimactic.

By the way, is a great find. Take care of this VHS, is precious.
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby DaiconOtaku » Fri Dec 25, 2020 6:05 pm

View Original PostFreakyFilmFan4ever wrote:I have no idea who "Megumi" is, and I'm not really gonna go back and rewatch the conversational bits in the tape to find out just yet.


"Megumi" would be Megumi Hayashibara. She was in lots of shows that were massive among western fans (Ranma ½, Eva, and Slayers being the most well known, but dozens of other major roles in shows that aren't as well-remembered). Getting into fandom when I did in the late 1990s/early 2000s, it was standard to just refer to her as "Megumi" and expect that everyone would understand who you meant.

EDIT: It's interesting that this convention was the weekend after Anime Expo '95, in the same geographic area, clearly had at least one major Japanese guest, and yet it's not on anime-cons.com and I'd never heard of it before. I wonder if there's anything about it in the Google News archive of the rec.arts.anime Usenet group.

EDIT2: This also wouldn't have been the first time a Gainax anime premiered in the US before being released in Japan. Gainax quietly screened their 1991 Otaku no Video OVA at AnimeCon '91 (which went bankrupt and its assets were bought out by some of the organizers to become Anime Expo the following year) at 3:30AM for an audience of 9 people. Source on that is https://groups.google.com/g/rec.arts.anime/c/vtgvy-glg1A/m/WyrrxYmjHhcJ?pli=1

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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby DaiconOtaku » Sat Dec 26, 2020 3:31 am

This is strange. I think it may be meshing footage from multiple years. If the cosplay contest was at the Anaheim Marriott, it was probably Anime Expo 1994 or 1996. The con going on July 7-9, 1995 was Anime America at the Red Lion Inn (now a Doubletree) in San Jose, California. Megumi Hayashibara was a Guest of Honor at that con.

EDIT: Okay, I'm 99.9% the cosplay contest at the beginning was Anime Expo 1994. This video is only of group entrants and so doesn't have the Sailor Moon skit you mention, but this video is cued up to her accepting the "Best Presentation" award. https://youtu.be/wMW9GosA-RQ?t=1652

This means the video is likely a compilation from multiple source tapes and the EVA fansub probably wasn't from a pre-release screening.

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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby UrsusArctos » Sat Dec 26, 2020 12:03 pm

View Original PostDaiconOtaku wrote:This means the video is likely a compilation from multiple source tapes and the EVA fansub probably wasn't from a pre-release screening.


Is there any way of verifying this or figuring out which con the fansub was screened at? I mean, it's a bummer if it turns out that the fansub wasn't actually from a pre-release screening, but even so, it's very likely this was the first time NGE was seen in the US in subbed form.
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby DaiconOtaku » Sat Dec 26, 2020 1:17 pm

View Original PostUrsusArctos wrote:it's very likely this was the first time NGE was seen in the US in subbed form.


I honestly highly doubt that. Central Anime (Kansas) wasn't/isn't a a speedsubber, and the subs of theirs I had on VHS (they were the only group I knew of willing to tackle trying to translate and sub the beast that is Legend of the Galactic Heroes) used imported Japanese laserdisc source. The production company logos in front of the episode also suggest that to me (it wasn't usual to edit anything at the start of the disc out from a VHS fansub as that would have taken another intermediate tape step and corresponding loss of quality. Even the LD player's "Side A->B" message as the laser pickup was moving to the other side of the disc was usually left in). For a show as big a deal as Eva, some other group would have tape-traded for a raw off-air recording and gotten their subs out first.

Also, partnering with a US fansubber would have been highly unusual, particularly at that exact moment. In 1995-1996, US distributors and Japanese anime companies joined together for their first anti-piracy campaign, "J.A.I.L.E.D." (Japanese Animation Industry Legal Enforcement Division) to much fan outcry/backlash. If people were wondering about the prominent "NOT FOR SALE OR RENTAL" disclaimers, that was one reason!

What this tape screams to me, particularly given the "[club name] Anime Primer 101" title, is an intro to anime and anime fandom for new club members (compiled from some convention tapes and fansub tapes obtained through tape-trading networks) either of shows the club was showing or just thought their members might want to see. They didn't have any convention footage on them, but I made similar mixtapes of anime first episodes to send to online friends who seemed vaguely interested in this "anime" thing, usually in 6-hr EP mode to stuff as much on as possible.

It could also have been a demo tape to put on a TV at the club's table at their university open house/club showcase to attract potential members, in which case a mix of anime and con footage really makes sense. The club I was a part of made tapes like that in the early 2000s.

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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Sat Dec 26, 2020 3:22 pm

Thanks for the input, dude! I’ve been meaning to follow up on this tape for a while, actually. I’ve been given a few other leads as to the origins of the tape, but haven’t had the time to really follow those leads.

I’m not sure if the Megumi mention is Hayashibara. There was one part of the tape where they all visit her in her hotel room, and I didn’t recognize her as a native speaking Japanese person. (Also, the idea of a bunch of non-staff American anime nerds being invited to a Japanese voice actress’ hotel room sounds just plain weird in the con crowds I’ve run around with. But I wasn’t a part of the scene in the 90’s so it might have been very different then.) If it’s not Hayashibara, then it probably means that the rest of the tape isn’t a mesh of different tapes from different conventions. Let me go back and go through that part of the tape, though, and confirm the identity of the Megumi featured in it. It’ll really help me better establish the situation around this tape.
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby DaiconOtaku » Sat Dec 26, 2020 6:38 pm

Okay, yeah, if the people who filmed the video weren't on staff and they really visit "Megumi" in her hotel room then probably not. The dates do line up with Anime America '95 though. Speaking of Megumi Hayashibara and Anime America 1995, here's a translated Anime-V Magazine "Megumi-Toon" about her experience at that con.

http://nnanime.com/megumi-toon/mgbk042.html

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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Sat Dec 26, 2020 11:03 pm

Nice! Those are awesome!

I should have time tomorrow afternoon to go through the tape and post what I find about its "Megumi." Even if this doesn't end up being a first US screening of Eva, it'll at least be a fun exploration of 90's anime fandom in America, and we can hopefully better pin point the origins of this tape.
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby Sailor Star Dust » Sat Jan 09, 2021 9:11 pm

I aged 500 years seeing the fansub "Not for sale or rent" disclaimer of old :lol: (Even if this was a mixtape video of sorts, it was pretty interesting to see Fushigi Yuugi and Eva on a worn down tape!)

I'm also interested in knowing who that Megumi is, even if it's just some random fan. When it comes to interviews/panels, I'd wager Ogata wasn't as well known back then in the West as Haruka/Uranus before playing Shinji. Hayashibara having interviews would've been the time frame of her in Slayers, too...
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby Javi2541997 » Mon Jan 18, 2021 6:29 am

Thanks for sharing this piece of history with us! I like the VHS format (I have some of 1998) it gives an aesthetic view ^_^
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Mon Jan 18, 2021 8:32 am

lol, once my life stops being an endless cycle of busy work, I need to revisit the "Megumi scenes" in full.
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby Szmitten » Tue Mar 16, 2021 7:54 pm

We've been discussing some of this in DM's but, since I've been cultivating a thorough production timeline for Evangelion, we thought I might be able to contribute some thoughts.

Firstly, the 7th July 1995 date is irrelevant and impossible. The first two episodes were first screened 22nd-23rd July 1995 at the Gainamatsuri Gainax Festival and completely lacked OP's and ED's because they literally didn't exist at the time.

Secondly, it's not a broadcast recording due to the lack of furigana. The combination of logos at the start of the Evangelion part (Star Child/Ing/Movic) are the ones present in the original Japanese VHS release from 3rd February 1996 (at the earliest). With clarification from FreakyFilmFan4ever, the next episode preview is also the 30 second video-version, and when it concludes there is a titlecard introducing the 15 second TV version before it cuts to the next clip.

Thirdly, ADV licensed Evangelion very quickly, starting in August 1996. The western releases, due to being based on the OA versions instead of waiting for the NPCs, would eventually outpace the Japanese releases, making fansubbing and bootlegging unecessary. That said, until ADV started selling in August, there would have been a window for bootleg fansubs to be distributed. This is a copy of one of those tapes, created after February 1996 and made redundant before the end of the year. (Eva bootlegging is covered in this article: https://www.polygon.com/2019/6/20/18684 ... dv-netflix)

In short, I think everything on the tape is sourced from multiple places and years, the Evangelion part probably procured during or after 1996, and the tape itself is some kind of initiation for new members of the Asunaro Club.

Speaking of which, I found the Asunaro Club:
https://dennisamith.com/2019/04/18/the- ... beginning/
https://dennisamith.com/2019/04/19/the- ... ia-part-2/

It was a club at Fresno State in Lemoore, California, and this person was a member. You may or may not be able to contact him to know more about the club itseelf.

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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Tue Mar 16, 2021 8:21 pm

Thanks for digging around and finding this stuff out for us! You are truly doing the Lord's work! :D

I suppose that means we need to have the Front Page of EvaGeeks run a retraction of sorts, given these new developments.
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Re: Eva Screening From July 1995 (pre-release!) at a US Convention!

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Postby FelipeFritschF » Tue Mar 16, 2021 9:20 pm

Very interesting initiative.

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Re: Possible First US Eva Screening, Recorded Visit With Hayashibara!

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Postby FreakyFilmFan4ever » Wed Mar 17, 2021 6:14 pm

Apparently the video actually does feature a visit with Megumi Hayashibara (Japanese voice of Rei Ayanami and Yui Ikari from NGE)!

SPOILER: Show
Image
Old VHS Tape footage is very unflattering....

I don't know how I missed that during my first viewing. (Poorly mixed audio, I was drunk, blah, blah, blah....)

Thanks to DaiconOtaku, Szmitten, and cyharding for helping me find this stuff and dropping more leads regarding this video that I supposedly had already seen in full. -o-;
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