The new 26-episode Sailor Moon Crystal anime series will be streamed on Hulu and Hulu+ giving the popular anime mainstream exposure outside the usual anime channels. The new "magical girl" series, which is produced by Toei Animation, will be streamed with English subtitles at the same time as it streams in Japan (see "New 'Sailor Moon' Debut Set") with new episodes streaming on the first and third Saturdays of each month. VIZ Media, which controls North American rights to the new Sailor Moon Crystal series (see "VIZ Gets 'Sailor Moon' Anime") will also be streaming the series on its NeonAlley.com site as will Crunchyroll (see "New Trailer for 'Sailor Moon Crystal'").
The new Sailor Moon Crystal series features the return of voice actress Koto Mitsuishi as Sailor Moon, but has new seiyu for the four Sailor Guardians. Based on the manga by Naoko Takeuchi, the original Sailor Moon anime series, which was also produced by Toei, was a big hit in the U.S. in a version that was “localized” by DIC. It is this history of popularity as a children’s TV series here in the States that undoubtedly led to Hulu acquiring the rights to the new Sailor Moon series. And, it appears that there is a major struggle among the major U.S. streaming services like Amazon, Netflix, and Hulu to lock up kids’ programming, which keeps getting an increasing share of the VOD market, especially as young families increasing eschew cable and satellite in favor of less costly streaming alternatives (see "Amazon Gets Exclusive Rights to 'Wallace & Gromit' & 'Shaun the Sheep' Shorts").
In spite of the fact that the last volume of Sailor Moon manga appeared in 1997, the series remains the #1 bestselling shojo anime series in the U.S. for the first five months of 2014 in a recent survey of bookstore and direct market sales conducted by ICv2.com. The fact that the new Sailor Moon Crystal series will stream on Hulu, as reported by Variety, should help keep this venerable manga/anime property near the top of the heap in the North American market.
Starting July 5th
Posted by ICv2 on June 20, 2014 @ 9:24 am CT
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