US-based VoD distributor Asian Media Rights (AMR) has sealed a distribution partnership with FUNimation Entertainment, which is the largest distributor of Japanese animation in North America.
The agreement covers FUNimation’s highly-anticipated anime feature Evangelion 2.0: You Can (Not) Advance and animated feature Summer Wars, in addition to live-action features such as Alien vs. Ninja and Mutant Girls Squad from cult genre label Sushi Typhoon.
Under the terms of the agreement, AMR will oversee the cable and satellite VoD release of more than 20 titles either “day-and-date” with their Japanese theatrical release, or prior to theatrical release.
The deal kicks off with Evangelion 2.0 which will be made available on cable and satellite VoD before FUNimation releases an expanded version of the film, Evangelion 2.22, on DVD and Blu-ray on March 29.
Founded by Michael Hong and David Chu, the former heads of cable channel ImaginAsian TV, AMR packages Asian feature films and event programming for cable, satellite and telco VoD and other digital platforms across North America. It currently has a catalogue of more than 250 titles.
Commenting on the deal, Hong said: “The approach with FUNimation, because they have such amazing stuff and such a passionate and informed fan base, was always about how do we bring these titles to them as soon as possible, and into their living rooms so that they can watch and appreciate it in their large flat-screen HD TV screens.”
FUNimation CEO Gen Fukunaga said: “Transactional VOD is about providing more convenience and choice for the entertainment fan. This new approach allows us to make our anime and genre film titles available to various service subscribers while also supporting our sell-through product and those fans who enjoy the theater experience and really, reaching the broadest audience for our movies.”