Animazement is an annual convention held in Raleigh, North Carolina on Memorial Day weekend. Returning to the Raleigh Convention Center again this year, they just released the names of several more guests that will be in attendance as a Valentine’s Day gift to attendees.
American voice actor Erik Scott Kimerer has worked on Toradora as Ryuuji Takasu, Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans as Biscuit Griffon, Your Lie in April as Takeshi Aiza, Magi as Alibaba Saluja, Accel World as Haruyuki Arita, Sword Art Online as Ducker, Seven Deadly Sins as Gowther, and Blood Lad as Hydra Knell. In video games he’s lent his voice to Cress and various other characters in Tales of Xilia 2, Mark Evans in Inazuma Eleven, Joven Glacius in Heroes of Newerth, and a Black Egret in Skullgirls, among others.
Veteran cosplayer and costume designer Jez Roth has worked with Cirque du Soleil, nightclubs, olympians, red carpets, electric Daisy Carnival, film, commercials and music videos. Jez Roth started sewing at the age of 13 on small crafts and at the local dance studio before falling in love with the art of cosplay at Katsucon 1998. After many years of competing at anime convention masquerades winning Best in Show 15 times with tailored costumes and heavily choreographed skits, he moved to Las Vegas to work for The Venetian designing the Opera Gowns, eventually landing at Cirque du Soleil’s water spectacular O.
Also attending is animator Support Group member Tatsuro Kawano (best known for work on Boruto: Naruto the Movie and Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress). The non-profit organization “Animator Support Group” was founded in 2010 by Jun Sugawara, with the purpose of establishing a high-performance environment for animators. To achieve the goal, Animator Support Group (ASG) provides stability and skill-enhancement to animators through activities such as Annual Rookie Animator Award, Animator Workshops, and more. To further support the animators, the organization initiated a new project in 2014— the Start-Up Animator Dormitory Project. Thanks to the supporters in Japan, the project made a successful launch in March 2014 with the 1st dormitory. However to keep this project up to speed and to take Japanese animation further, ASG would like to ask for help from anime supporters from around the world. Check them out on Facebook or at their website (note that the website is currently only in Japanese).
Announced earlier in the month were professional jump-rope team J-Trap will becoming to AZ 2016, as well as Animator Supporting Group founder Jun Sugawara and animator (and ASG member) Kiyotaka Oshiyama, who has worked on Evangelion 2.0, Space Dandy, several Fullmetal Brotherhood titles, The Wind Rises, and more. J-vloggers Rachel and Jun and international enrollment and study consultant JP Yates are also schedule to attend AZ 2016. Rachel and Jun host a YouTube channel with over 500,000 subscribers, and JP has been sharing his experiences with study and live abroad programs in Japan with AZ attendees for years.
They are also welcoming Masao Maruyama (CEO of MAPPA, producer of Claymore, Death Note, and more), Sho Asano (shamisen) and Taishi Yamabe (taiko), and Erica Lindbeck (Nori of the Sleeping Knights in Sword Art Online II, Kaede Makidera in Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works, among other roles).
There are more announcements to come as the convention draws closer. Applications to host panels at the event are also open to attendees. You can find the information on how to apply to be a panelist on their website. Keep checking their page for more updates.