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Posted by Scott Tingley,November 26, 2007

-Press Release-

Students learn about popular Japanese art-form, pitch concepts to studio execs

IRVINE, Calif. (November 26, 2007) – UC Irvine Extension, the continuing education arm of the University of California, Irvine, has announced plans to offer a new, third course in its “ Manga & Anime Explosion: What, Why, How & Wow!” series. The course is designed to give both those pursuing a career in the high-growth entertainment field and enthusiasts alike a better understanding of the creative and business processes involved in bringing the Japanese art-form successfully to the masses in the United States.

“Manga represents a growth industry – one that has thrived for years in Japan and increasingly, is taking hold in America,” explains course instructor Northrop Davis. “The anime/manga courses at UC Irvine Extension offer students, be they artists, writers or simply interested in learning more about the genre, an opportunity to learn how they can have a successful career doing something they love. The course is presented from a global perspective, so we're helping students to branch out – not copying the Japanese, but learning to create their own unique stories.”

Manga and anime represent probably the biggest growth opportunity in entertainment.  Stories already well-established in Japan are being brought to the United States where they are being translated and reconstituted for U.S. audiences. Those involved in anime and manga would describe the final products as being much less stifled by convention, by censorship and much more creative and potentially visceral than most of the entertainment being produced by Hollywood.

That is not to say that Hollywood has not taken notice of the influx of manga in the United States, as the course's instructor, Davis, can attest to. He is considered one of the visionaries of manga in the United States, having successfully shopped his concepts to 20 th Century Fox and Warner Bros., including a recent deal that is in production with Oscar-winning director James Cameron.

Students participating in the course will have an opportunity to develop their own manga concepts, interact with industry leaders and eventually pitch their concepts to a major movie studio.

“I've never heard of anything else like this being offered locally,” said Davis. “There are some around the country, but nothing that combines the creation of manga with insight for getting jobs within the industry. One of our primary goals is to help our students get jobs and be successful, so while other courses can be mostly academic, this one is a combination that's a little more practical and helps students make a career out of something they love.”

The class will be held on five consecutive Tuesdays, beginning Jan. 22 from 7 p.m.-10 p.m. on the UC Irvine Campus.  For more information visit http://unex.uci.edu/ or to enroll call (949) 824-5414.  

About UC Irvine Extension:   As the continuing education arm of UCI, UC Irvine Extension is dedicated to providing a university-level learning experience for students, offering thousands of exciting courses and programs to local, regional, and global constituencies. UC Irvine Extension offers a rich array of academic and community programs to support a diverse audience, from a wide selection of academic programs to numerous campus activities. For more information, please visit www.extension.uci.edu .

About the University of California, Irvine:   The University of California, Irvine is a top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service. Founded in 1965, UCI is among the fastest-growing University of California campuses, with more than 27,000 undergraduate and graduate students and about 1,400 faculty members. The second-largest employer in dynamic Orange County, UCI contributes an annual economic impact of $3.3 billion. For more UCI news, visit www.today.uci.edu .





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