The original Sailor Moon anime is coming to Blu-Ray in Japan starting this summer

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray Collection vol. 1

Great news for completists who want to have Sailor Moon in the best possible quality! The original 90s Sailor Moon anime is coming to Blu-Ray in Japan with the first half of season 1 coming out on June 14th 2017 and the rest of season 1 coming August 9th. These are Japanese language releases with no English audio or subtitles. Following the release of the first season Sailor Moon R and then the 3 movies will be released. These sets won’t be cheap! This first volume, containing episodes 1 to 23, is being sold by Amazon Japan for 15,903 yen, about $140 US. Set 1 and set 2 are also available from CD Japan for $175 US a piece. This is also listed on the Sailor Moon 25th Anniversary page. Why, you might ask, would I buy this set when Viz already released a less expensive Blu-Ray set of the Sailor Moon anime and I can watch these episodes for free in HD on Yahoo! View? Quality! The Viz release didn’t look great and to this date the Japanese region 2 DVD releases remain the gold standard of video quality. Some other international releases have been comparable in quality but nothing released in North America has really been close.

Sailor Moon Blu-Ray Collection vol. 2

The HD version of the original Sailor Moon series has been aired on Japanese TV since April 6th 2015. Unfortunately we shouldn’t expect anything too mind blowing in the way of quality. This won’t look like Sailor Moon Crystal or any other recently made anime series on Blu-Ray. The product description on the Amazon Japan listing and the official site clearly state that the HD video source was upconverted from SD source material, that being a standard definition of 480 lines of horizontal resolution. What this means is that this isn’t a high definition transfer of some analog film source but instead a software upgrade of the source material which had DVD equivalent resolution. This may be a practical consideration. I don’t know if Sailor Moon ever existed on film or if the cels were recorded directly to standard definition video. You can’t get something from nothing. While the software scaling to improve the video will likely appear nicer than anything else we’ve seen, it’s still just software tricks to resize, resample and smooth out the picture, something that TVs and Blu-Ray players are also able to do with a good quality DVD. I don’t expect this video quality to be a significant improvement to the Japanese DVDs that are already on the market, but this is always a bit subjective.

It should be noted that up until now only the first season of Sailor Moon and the movies were ever released in progressive scan (480p). Sailor Moon R, S, SuperS and SailorStars were only ever released in lower quality interlaced video (480i). These releases will almost certainly have gone through a software deinterlacing process which will make them appear nicer on a more modern flat panel display instead of the CRT TVs that were common in the 90s when Sailor Moon was originally produced. The movies may also be of a higher quality if the original film source is used. When the region 2 Japanese DVD releases of the films were released they went back to the film source to create anamorphic widescreen releases rather than using the matted standard definition source material. I’m hopeful that this release, and perhaps even the Sailor Moon R movie Viz will be releasing in April, will have a legitimate high definition transfer.

Sailor Moon episode 1 and Sailor Moon R episode 47 on YouTube

To advertise this, as part of TOEI’s 60th Annivesary, the official Sailor Moon site has announced that fans in Japan can watch the first episodes of Sailor Moon and Sailor Moon R on TOIE’s YouTube channel. These videos, however, are not available to view outside of Japan.

These discs appear to be free of region restrictions, meaning that they will play in any country’s Blu-Ray players. Note that Japanese Blu-Ray coding is a non issue for North Americans who share region A with Japan. The lack of English, however, may be more concerning.

Do any of you moneybags have enough disposable income to justify this purchase? By this summer I’ll be knee deep in diaper and formula bills but I’ll likely still scrounge up the many hundreds needed to buy these sets.

Sailor Moon ages 5 years overnight as we transition from the 20th to the 25th Anniversary

Will Sailor Moon be this old when the new anime airs?

On July 6th 2012 there was a live show to celebrate Sailor Moon’s 20th Anniversary. This celebration continued for the following 4 and half years as we continued to celebrate this seemingly never ending anniversary. The Sailor Moon manga was first published on December 28th 1991 with the anime starting on March 7th 1992, which puts us squarely into Sailor Moon’s 25th Anniversary. Last night the Sailor Moon official site, which had been using the 20th Anniversary name and logo on it’s projects up until yesterday, finally embraced the 25th Anniversary. Sorry Anniversaries 21 through 24! You’re never going to happen.

Sailor Moon 20th anniversary logo

Old and busted

The Sailor Moon franchise is worse off than an unfortunate child born on February 29th who’s parents are too cheap to buy streamers and presents on anything but a leap year. How long will the 25th Anniversary celebration last? If the past is any indication it will be until about 2022 when we celebrate the 30th Anniversary perhaps with the final arc of the still ongoing Sailor Moon Crystal anime and some Sailor Moon themed suppositories. Farewell Sailor Moon 20th Anniversary! It was a good five years!

Sailor Moon 25th Anniversary project

New hotness

New episodes of Sailor Moon Crystal have been announced

Sailor Moon 25th Anniversary project

The Sailor Moon official site has mentioned that a sequel to Sailor Moon Crystal is coming as part of their recently announced 25th Anniversary celebration. On their official web site in the “Sailor Moon Crystal” section of the 25th Anniversary page a message appears in Japanese which roughly translates to:

Animation “Sailor Moon Crystal”
Continuation production decision!

We have decided to produce the sequel of anime “Sailor Moon Crystal”!
More information will be announced shortly.
Please look forward to it ♪

So it looks like the series will be continuing in some form, and as usual we are asked to wait for more information. Will this be the Dream arc, continuing the story where it left off, or something different? More news as we learn it!

New episodes of Sailor Moon Crystal announced

Are you excited about the 25th Anniversary? I wonder if this one will go on until the 30th Anniversary!

Sailor Moon R: The Movie is coming to Cineplex theatres in Canada in March

Sailor Moon R: The Movie listed on the Cineplex web site

According to this listing for Sailor Moon R The Movie on the Cineplex site we will be getting Sailor Moon R: The Movie in Canada on March 1st. Since the film was first announced I’ve been anxiously searching for the it on the Cineplex site as they are a major Canadian film distributor who have played anime films in the past. The movie opens in theatres across the US today. You can check out the many cities with showings on the Eleven Arts web site.

Sailor Moon R: The Movie listed on the Cineplex phone app

This is great news for Canadian fans hoping to see the film in theatres prior to it’s April 18th home video release. We don’t have a list of theatres in Canada which will be playing the film at this time but I will be sure to update you with details as we learn them.

The listing includes the following summary:

GENRE

Animation, Anime

CAST

Stephanie Sheh, Robbie Daymond, Ben Diskin

SYNOPSIS

Sailor Moon comes to the big screen in her first dazzling movie! Uncut and for the first time in theaters, Join Sailor Moon on an adventure to save not only the world, but also her true love! This limited engagement also includes the North American debut of the original theatrical short, Make Up! Sailor Guardians and exclusive extras. English dubbed.

Will you be watching the film in theatres if it plays in your city? For those of you living in the US, have you already seen it?

The Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Amour Eternal musical will be playing in Hokkaido March 11th and 12th

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Amour Eternal cast

The still terribly named “Amour Eternal” musical took place in October and November of last year but another 4 performances are now being scheduled to take place at the Eniwa Municipal Hall in Hokkaido. These shows will be taking place at noon and 5pm on March 11th and 12th.

For fans outside of Japan who are unwilling to make the long cross continental voyage to check out the musical you can download a not so legal English subtitled version of it from fan subbing group Miss Dream. The Sailor Moon Amour Eternal musical covers the Dream story of the Sailor Moon manga, which we still haven’t seen in Sailor Moon Crystal and are all patiently awaiting news about.

Will any of you have a chance to see this musical in Eniwa, Hokkaido?

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Sailor Moon R: The Movie will be released on video April 18th

Sailor Moon R The Movie on DVD

As Sailor Moon R: The Movie premiered in Los Angeles tonight anime retailer Right Stuf added the film to their online store. The listing, currently only including a DVD option priced at $17.98, lists a release date of April 18th 2017! The film will include Japanese and English audio tracks with English subtitles. For now we only have a promotional image for the cover. (Update: a Blu-Ray DVD combo option has been added to Right Stuf’s web site for $26.98)

The film will be playing in theatres starting next weekend. A full list of theatres can be found on the Eleven Arts web site. If you’re not lucky enough to have the film showing in your city you will still have a chance to see it when it’s released on video in April. Do you plan on picking this release up?

Sailor Moon R: The Movie premieres in Los Angeles tonight and many more theatres will be showing the movie starting next week

Sailor Moon R The Movie Premiere Marquee

Sailor Moon R: The Movie is being screened for the first time in North America tonight. The film’s premiere is in Los Angeles at the Theatre at Ace Hotel. Many more cities will be showing the movie starting next weekend with the first showings on Thursday January 19th. We originally posted a list of theatres which were showing the film. More cities and theatres have since been added to the list which can be found at the Eleven Arts web site. Last time I included a full list in the post but since this is a dynamic list with cities being added every week I would encourage you to visit to page to see if your city has been added.

Sailor Moon R The Movie Silhouette

Sadly there are still no Canadian cities which have announced screenings of the film. I hope this changes soon!

Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2 will be released on DVD and Blu-Ray February 21st

Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2 Limited Edition Blu-Ray

It’s been a while since the first story arc of Sailor Moon Crystal was released on home video back in August. Fans have been waiting for news about Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2, including the Black Moon story arc, being released on home video. Amazon and the Right Stuf have listed the product for a February 21st release. Amazon has listing for the regular and limited edition with box art included. The Right Stuf also has the limited edition Blu-Ray, regular edition Blu-Ray and DVD listed with prices. They’re selling the limited edition Blu-Ray for $62.99, the regular edition Blu-Ray for $54.59 and the DVD for $31.22. Who sets a price ending in 22 cents? Mind boggling.

Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2 Limited Edition Blu-Ray

North American Blu-Ray cover for Set 2’s Limited Edition


Sailor Moon Crystal Blu-Ray vol. 13 cover

Japanese Blu-Ray cover for Volume 13

The box art seems consistent with the first release. The limited edition cover features Sailor Moon’s third transformation brooch, the Cosmic Heart Compact, which only shows up at the end of the second story arc. This is because this is the cover from the final volume from the original Japanese Sailor Moon Crystal releases. I’ve included a picture of that cover above for comparison. I’d uploaded this picture to a post that I never actually finished reviewing that set. This set will include the English dub of Sailor Moon Crystal which we’ve already heard for these episodes.

Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2 Standard Edition Blu-Ray

The regular edition box art will also likely be that shown on the case which is included inside the special edition set. Details of the release are included on the packaging. We see that this will include episodes 15 to 26. A special feature mentioned is an interview with Momoiro Clover Z, the band which performed Moon Pride, the Sailor Moon Crystal theme. The set is rated TV 14 in the US and PG in Canada. Maybe it’s the whole making out with her dad thing. The set includes art of the original Japanese covers and a full colour special booklet.

Sailor Moon Crystal Set 2 Standard Edition Blu-Ray

For now you can’t actually preorder the set using the links below, but at some point in the future you should be able to. The set is coming out next month after all!

Sailor Uranus and Neptune Figuarts Zero figures are coming in 2017

Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune Figuarts ZERO figures

Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune will be the next two Figuarts ZERO figures released by Bandai. These figures, which are high quality statues, are part of the Sailor Moon Crystal Figuarts ZERO series, which have a slightly different look than statues based on the original anime. The new figures were announced on the official Sailor Moon site and the Tamashii Nations site. Sailor Uranus will be the first to be released, coming in May 2017 for a price of 5000 yen, about $42 US. The Sailor Neptune figure was also shown in an image on a shared pedestal, though we have no details about this figure except that it will be released some time in 2017.

Sailor Uranus Figuarts ZERO figure

Sailor Uranus is holding her Space Sword while Sailor Uranus has her Deep Aqua Mirror. Do you plan on getting these? Have you been buying any of the other Figuarts ZERO figures?

Sailor Uranus Figuarts ZERO figure



Rina Sato, the voice of Sailor Mars from Sailor Moon Crystal, gave birth to a baby boy at some point in 2016

Rina Sato, the voice of Sailor Mars from Sailor Moon Crystal

Rina Sato, who provided the Japanese voice of Sailor Mars in Sailor Moon Crystal, has announced that she had a baby boy at some point this year. According to a number of Japanese news sites this was mentioned in a blog post on December 31st, the first she’d made since August. She also mentioned getting married. When exactly this occurred isn’t clear.

Rina Sato, the voice of Sailor Mars, in December 2016

I’m a bit surprised to learn this news! While Rina Sato has not been active on her blog she has still been consistently posting to Twitter throughout the year. Her posts talk about attending various events, many of which are accompanied by very much not pregnant photos of herself. That said there is a lengthy gap in which there are no photos of her during the first half of 2016. Her blog post mentions that this is a private affair, so it would make sense that she not share details about it on her professional Twitter account. All considered I would say it’s likely she had her baby boy earlier in the year rather than later.

Congratulations to Rina Sato! I wish her all the best in this new chapter of life.

Source: Rina Sato’s blog via IT Media, Livedoor News, Yahoo! News and @thesailorbook on Twitter