Media Release — San Francisco, CA, JULY 9, 2009 – VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), one of the entertainment industry’s most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies, has expanded its continuing partnership with PlayArte Pictures, a prominent Brazilian entertainment media distributor, to include the home entertainment rights for the Second Season of the smash hit animated series NARUTO for Brazil.
PlayArte plans to release NARUTO’s Second Season, (consisting of Volumes 16-30) throughout the Second Semester of 2009. The episodes will be released as multiple two-sided DVD editions, with one side containing the original Japanese, uncut subtitled episodes and the other flip-side presenting the edited, dubbed TV version.
“We’re very happy to continue our partnership with VIZ Media and NARUTO,” says Otelo Bettin Coltro, spokesperson for PlayArte Pictures. “We’re looking forward to bringing episodes 53-104 to our existing fans and hope to garner new ones as well!”
Created by Masashi Kishimoto, NARUTO was first introduced in Weekly Shonen Jump magazine in Japan in 1999 and quickly became that country’s most popular ninja manga targeting tweens and teens and has sold more than 85 million copies to-date. The manga series and animated counterpart (both rated ‘T’ for teens), are among VIZ Media’s most successful properties.
The general storyline of both the NARUTO manga and animated series and features depict the adventures of a young boy named Naruto Uzumaki who trains to become a ninja. Naruto, cursed with the The Nine-Tailed Fox Spirit sealed within his body, is forced to live a bullied life discriminated against by his fellow villagers. But Naruto is resilient and undaunted and his determination often inspires those around him. Through the adventures, the young ninja learns the importance of friendship, teamwork, loyalty, hard work, creativity, ingenuity, and right vs. wrong.
“We are so pleased to continue our partnership with PlayArte in Brazil, where NARUTO enjoys a large fan base,” says Andrea Gonzalez, International Licensing Director, VIZ Media. “PlayArte’s goal of appealing to both our target audience, as well as working to engage younger viewers, mirrors our own objectives and illustrates why they are an ideal partner for NARUTO in Latin America.”
About PlayArte Pictures
PlayArte Pictures is one of the leading independent distributors in Brazil for theatrical, home entertainment and television rights. In the market for more than 20 years, PlayArte is best known for its creative and innovative marketing campaigns. PlayArte releases theatrically an average of 20 pictures per year including titles from the more prominent independent producers and distributors in the world such as New Line, The Weinstein Company, Focus Features, Mandate Pictures, VIZ Media, Lakeshore and many others.
About VIZ Media, LLC
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga (graphic novel) 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-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa and is a global ex-Asia licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, and DVDs, and develops, markets, licenses, and distributes animated entertainment for audiences and consumers of all ages.