Anime News Service is reporting from Anime Expo that Newtype Magazine, the cutting edge anime magazine published by Kodakawa Shoten, will be available in an English language edition starting in the spring of 2002. Digital Manga President Hikaru Sasahara announced the initiative, noting that he had been negotiating for over a year with Kodakawa Shoten to obtain the rights to produce an English language edition of the popular anime magazine. Mr. Sasahara stated that he would attempt to make the English version of Newtype a truly international publication that would include 20% of its content from North and South America, 10% from Europe and 70% from the Japanese Newtype magazine. Currently the only non-Japanese language edition of Newtype is published in Korean.
Also present at the Newtype Panel at Anime Expo was Takashi Watanabe, the Editor of Newtype, who has made the magazine the leading source of information on anime in the world. In fact Newtype is so good that many pop culture retailers in the U.S. manage to sell the magazine in spite of the language barrier. Diamond Comic Distributors imports Newtype via its connection with leading Japanese distributor Tohan and sells it with a $10.99 SRP.
While the Japanese edition of Newtype often contains over 300 pages of content, details about the English language edition remain to be worked out, though it is likely to contain fewer pages. The posters and other extras that typically accompany the Japanese editions may or may not be included in the English version, but losing the extras is a small price to pay for the wealth of information about the world of anime that Newtype provides. The English language edition of Newtype will mark a major step forward for the anime community in the U.S., providing a great source of information about what is happening in Japan, and undoubtedly doing its part to shorten the already shrinking gap between the time when a hot new anime debuts in Japan and when it becomes available in the U.S.