The Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical will be released on DVD and Blu-Ray March 20th

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Sayuri Inoue and Mizuki Yamashita as Sailor Moon and Sailor Moon in Weekly Shonen Magazine

Good news for musical fans who have TVs that were made after 1992! It has been announced on the official Sailor Moon site that the recent Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical will be released not only on low resolution DVD but also on high definition Blu-Ray! This 3 disk set will include two version of the musical, that being both the Team Moon and Team Star versions, as well as bonus features! This is great news given the last 5 musicals, all released long after Blu-Rays and high definition televisions were commonplace, were only released on a low quality 480i DVD. I’ve complained about this time and time again as the past musical releases are really not in keeping with where the rest of the video industry is. This has become particularly frustrating in light of the fact that streaming and digital versions of the musical, uniquely available in Japan, are available in significantly higher resolutions than the DVD releases. I had previously suspected that the reason for the low quality releases was that older style video cameras had been used for the recordings, but this does not appear to be the case.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - The entire cast

This is particularly useful for North American fans who would normally not be able to play Japanese DVDs but are able to play Japanese Blu-Rays. Japan is in DVD region 2, while North America is in DVD region 1, requiring a region free DVD player to be able to watch a Japanese DVD. When it comes to Blu-Ray discs however a different system based on letters is used and both North America and Japan are part of Blu-Ray region A. I play all of my imported Japanese Blu-Rays on my off the shelf Canadian PlayStation 3 and 4 systems without issue. Keep in mind that these Japanese releases do not have any subtitles so fans will only be able to watch them in Japanese.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon Musical - Sailor Mercury, Mars and Moon

These releases unfortunately will not be cheap! The Blu-Ray release is 9504 yen, about $84 US, and the DVD at a modest 8424 yen, about $75. There’s certainly a good deal of content at that price but this still seems quite expensive! Bonus features on the third disc will include rehearsal footage, backstage video and more.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Tuxedo Mask and Sailor Moon

I certainly hope that this means we will be getting Blu-Ray releases of musicals in the future. While that may be the case this release may also be given more attention due to the fact that it involves members of the band Nogizaka46 and will appeal to a new audience. We don’t have any box art yet but I think a reversible cover with Team Moon and Team Star would be fun. Do you plan on picking up this release?

The Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical will air on Japanese television September 29th and 30th which may lead to a fan subbed version being produced

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - The entire cast

News has been posted to the Official Sailor Moon Site stating that at the end of September the Nogizaka x Sailor Moon musical will be airing on Japanese TV. The showings, on TBS channel 2 in Japan, will be held on two days to showcase both Team Star, September 29th, and Team Moon, September 30th. Each showing is at 5pm Japan Standard Time. What does this mean for us fans out here on the other side of the globe far from being basked in the radio waves of Tokyo Tower? In the past when a streaming version of the musical was made available this meant that some fan would record the broadcast and eventually create an English fan subbed version of the musical. I have been watching the releases from Miss Dream for the past many years but a takedown notice by King Records has lead to them removing their hosted files for the Petite Étrangère, Un Nouveau Voyage, Amour Eternal and Le Mouvement Final musicals. What does this mean for the new musical? I can’t say for sure.

Last week Miss Dream content manager Sailor Busters posted to her Twitter account stating her intention to record and upload the musical for the site.


It seems like the fan subbing group intends to share the musical. They may of course decide not to rather than risk another takedown notice after all the hard work that goes into translating and subtitling a musical. If it does get subbed and King Records sends another takedown notice they would likely comply and remove the content. I can’t predict the future but it seems like a subbed version of the musical is a possibility.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Team Star

I’m always hesitant to advocate flat out piracy on this site. In this case fan subs are thought to occupy a grey area where they aren’t legal but in cases such as this they seem to do little or nothing to negatively affect any legal product sales in Japan. Because of this most fan sub groups will be removed once there is a legal release of that content. I always encourage fans to support the official releases when possible. In this case the musicals have generally been released on video in Japan only. These releases are region coded with DVD region 2 which will not play in North America. These have not included any English audio or subtitles. Further the digital versions are usually restricted to users in Japan. That said things are getting more complicated as we have started to see performances and even theatrical showings of recent musicals here in North America.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Team Moon

Could the takedown notices by King Records be an indication of plans for a North American release of the musicals? I can only speculate as to what this means. It may simply be the case that they are trying to avoid having Japanese fans, who might otherwise pay for their legal releases, from downloading these English fan subbed releases and disabling the soft subtitles to watch them without any English text. The Internet, after all, has no borders. These sort of things didn’t happen back in the days of tape swapping and were less relevant with hard subbed videos which would be that much less appealing to a Japanese viewer. Similarly North American releases of Japanese anime on DVD and Blu-Ray could be imported by Japanese viewers often at a fraction of the cost of expensive Japanese releases. In the case of Sailor Moon this hasn’t been much of an issue with the massive difference in quality between Japanese and domestic releases.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Sayuri Inoue and Mizuki Yamashita as Sailor Moon and Sailor Moon in Weekly Shonen Magazine

What do you think? Have you been watching the Miss Dream subs of the musicals like many others in the fan community? Are you hoping to have a chance to watch the Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical as well? What do you think about the morality of sharing fan subs of releases not legally available in a country?

The Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical is now playing in Japan

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon Musical - Usagi and Tuxedo Mask

The latest Sailor Moon musical, Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical, began performances in Japan on June 8th! Here’s a look at that musical with photos from the set and other promotional images. As we’ve mentioned previously this musical features band members of the Japanese all girl pop band Nogizaka46 split into two teams, Team Star and Team Moon, which are in two performances of the musical. The rest of the all female cast is mostly comprised of musical actresses.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon Musical - Both Sailor Teams

This musical covers the Dark Kingdom arc of the manga which features Queen Beryl and the Shitennou. We can see from these photos that the story will include the masquerade ball from Act 4 of the manga, Masquerade Dance Party.

nogizaka46_x_sailor_moon_musical_tuxedo_mask_and_sailor_moon

The musical will continue playing in Tokyo at the Tennōzu Galaxy Theatre until June 24th. It will be performed at the TBS Akasaka ACT Theater September 21st to the 30th. Will any of you be seeing this musical?

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon Musical - Sailor Mercury, Mars and Moon

Image source: Modelpress, Modelpress, Kininarunaru Sokuhou, @pickmeShin, @mikakodayo

Keep reading for more promotional images of this musical.

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Check out images of the full cast of this summer’s Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - The entire cast

The official Sailor Moon site has been updated with images which shows the entire cast of this summer’s Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical. We previously only got images of the two Sailor Teams, Team Moon and Team Star, which will be played by 10 of the 46 member pop band. The rest of the cast is composed of musical actresses including Mikako Ishii, who played Sailor Pluto in the last 4 musicals, who will be portraying Tuxedo Mask. Other characters revealed in this image are Naru, Umino, the Shitennou Jadeite, Nephrite, Zosite and Kunzite as well as Queen Beryl and Queen Serenity. Queen Serenity had not been announced in the previous message I posted about this musical. She will be played by Mai Shiraishi, yet another member of Nogizaka 46.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Mai Shiraishi as Queen Serenity

The Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical will play in Tokyo this summer in June and September. It will cover the dark moon story arc and include the cast of Nogizaka46, a 46 member Japanese pop band, spread out over two teams. Some performances will include Team Star and the others will have Team Moon. The rest of the cast will be composed of other musical actors who are not members of the band. Based on the cast information it seems likely the format of the musical will be somewhat like others we’ve seen, covering the Dark Kingdom arc of the manga, which is the first season of the original anime.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Mai Shiraishi as Queen Serenity

Check out cast information and images of this summer’s Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Team Moon and Team Star

A few weeks ago we got our first look at the Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical. This new musical will be playing in Tokyo this summer first at the Tennōzu Galaxy Theatre June 8th to the 24th and then at the TBS Akasaka ACT Theater September 21st to the 30th. What, you may ask, is this musical all about? Nogizaka46 is an all female pop band in Japan and this is a Sailor Moon musical featuring members of that band. As we can see from the promo image and the posts on the Sailor Moon official site and musical’s official site, 10 of the band members have formed two Sailor Teams. One is Team Moon and the other is Team Star.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Team Moon

The two teams seem to be identical in costume and appearance, though we can clearly see that the members in those costumes differ from one image to the other. With multiple shows being put on over a fairly short time the two teams are scheduled to perform on different nights. At first I imagined this was to give the other team a break on the off days but since a lot of the other cast of the musicals is only listed once it seems like not everyone is on that schedule. Perhaps this setup is simply meant to vary the performances to feature more of their talent. It remains to be seen if the performances themselves will vary depending on the team performing. Perhaps each team will have an exclusive song to encourage people to see multiple performances! At this point this is only speculation.

Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical - Team Star

Here’s a translated cast listing. I’m not good with Japanese names (since Google Translate messes them up) so I had a little help from this Anime News Network article for this list. I attempted to find a relevant link when possible. All members of Nogizaka46 have profiles from the official site and for others I tried to find a profile or social media link.

Team Moon:
Sailor Moon/Usagi Tsukino: Mizuki Yamashita (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Mercury/Ami Mizuno: Riria Itō (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Mars/Rei Hino: Kazumi Takayama (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Jupiter/Makoto Kino: Ami Noujo (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Venus/Minako Aino: Hina Higuchi (Nogizaka46)

Team Star:
Sailor Moon/Usagi Tsukino: Sayuri Inoue (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Mercury/Ami Mizuno: Miria Watanabe (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Mars/Rei Hino: Ranze Terada (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Jupiter/Makoto Kino: Minami Umezawa (Nogizaka46)
Sailor Venus/Minako Aino: Kana Nakada (Nogizaka46)

Naru Osaka: Yuka Yamauchi
Umino Gurio: Marina Tanoue

Kunzite: Chihiro Andō
Zoisite: Sari Kojima
Nephrite: Shin
Jadeite: Rina Takeda

Ensemble (I assume this means background dancers, various monsters and such):
Mayuko Kawamoto, Mayu Kaburagi, Kumiko Saitō, Ayuka Kurachi, Minami Watanabe, Mami Mitsuoka

Queen Beryl: Nami Tamaki

Tuxedo Mask/Mamoru Chiba: Mikako Ishii

Director: Worry Kinoshita

Sailor Moon Petite Étrangère musical - Sailor Pluto

Only the main cast of the Sailor Team will be composed of Nogizaka46 members. The rest of cast of characters are played by various musical stars and dancers, as was the case with other musicals. To me the most interesting casting decision here is that Mikako Ishii, who played Sailor Pluto in the last few musicals, will be playing Tuxedo Mask! It’s well established that Sailor Pluto has an unrequited love for King Endymion in the future! What better way to gain someone’s affection than to literally become them? Also returning is Chihiro Ando as Kunzite. She previously played Tiger’s Eye in the Amour Eternal musical. As we see from this an other casting we once again have an all female cast even including the male characters.

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Amour Eternal Musical - The Amazon Trio

It seems clear that the story will cover the Dark Kingdom story arc though beyond that it’s hard to get a sense of what the content or structure of the musical will be like. Given the cast and that we have two returning cast members I’m inclined to think that it will be a similar presentation to musicals we have seen in the past.

So … which Team are you rooting for? Is that how we’re supposed to be reacting to this? Go Team Star! No way Team Moon is the best! … and so forth.

Three new Sailor Moon concerts are coming in 2018 and 2019

Nogizaka46

According to information posted to the official Sailor Moon site we have three new Sailor Moon musicals coming in 2018 and 2019! This follows the conclusion of the current series of musicals with the Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Le Mouvement Final musical this past summer. We’re getting something a bit different with each of these musicals this time around. With each being its own thing it doesn’t seem like they will necessarily follow a continuity as musicals have in the past. What’s more it doesn’t look like these will be traditional musicals but rather Sailor Moon themed concerts. Because of this I’m not sure I would label such as thing as “Seramyu” as the other musicals generally are, but it remains to be seen exactly how things develop to say for sure.

Logo - 3rd Sailor Moon Musical

The first of the concerts will feature Nogizaka46 which is an all female pop band similar to AKB48. The band of 46 members will somehow perform this Sailor Moon themed concert though we don’t really have details on what this would entail.

Logo Nogizaka46 x Sailor Moon musical

The next is dubbed The Super Live. What does this mean? The title reminded me of Kirari Super Live which was the name of the concert put on by the cast of the live action Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon series. The site describes it as a mix of singing, dancing and video gimmicks. We are told that TAKAHIRO will be putting this show together though I can’t say I understand who that is. This particular concert will be performed at the Japonismes event. This is a sort of Japanese cultural expo that takes place in Paris, France.

Logo Super Live x Sailor Moon musical

Finally the 3rd musical is… something we don’t really know anything about. It’s just referred to as the new musical. We’ll have to wait until we learn more about that.

Will all three of these really be done by the end of 2019? With the endless delays to Sailor Moon Crystal one shouldn’t put too much faith in the timeline until we get some specifics. I wouldn’t book those plane tickets just yet!