This Week in Animation News: ‘Halo’ Movies and Anime Coming to Blu-ray via Shout! Factory

In This Week in Animation News, I’ll take a look at the previous week in the world of animation in order to get you caught up on everything you might have missed. It’s your one-stop shop for news regarding cartoons, anime, and animated web series. We’re talking movies, TV shows, digital shorts, and everything in between!

We lead off this week with news of a distribution deal for Shout! Factory that will bring Halo‘s live-action, animated, and anime products to North American fans. Speaking of home video, we also have details on the upcoming DVD release for Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time: The Complete Seventh Season.

There’s also news of a Season 2 renewal for Hasbro’s online animated series Hanazuki: Full of Treasures along with a new app and upcoming toyline for the kid-friendly show; be sure to keep an eye out for new episodes coming soon! Also, you can scope the new Season 2 trailer–and meet a new character–for Rooster Teeth’s RWBY Chibi, which premieres today. Newcomer The Jellies is heading to Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim lineup this year. And in movie news, GKIDS will be bringing the Spanish-language award-winning film Birdboy to North American shores later this fall.

For the latest animation stories we’ve already covered on the site this week, take a look at the following links. Then, check out a selection of new stories below. Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments!

'Halo: The Fall of Reach' and 'Halo Legends' Part of the New Distribution Deal

Shout! Factory, a multi-platform media company, and global entertainment media company Content Media Corporation today announced a multi-film deal to bring Microsoft’s highly popular Halo feature-length movies and anime anthology series to the home entertainment marketplace in North America. The announcement was made by Shout! Factory’s founders Richard Foos, Bob Emmer and Garson Foos; and Jonathan Ford, Executive Vice President of Sales and Distribution at Content Media Corporation.

This new multi-year alliance provides Shout! Factory with exclusive home entertainment distribution rights (Blu-ray™ and DVD) in the U.S. and Canada to live-action features HALO 4: FORWARD UNTO DAWN (directed by Stewart Hendler) and HALO: NIGHTFALL (directed by Sergio Mimica-Gezzan and executive produced by Ridley Scott and David Zucker), animated feature HALO: THE FALL OF REACH (directed by Ian Kirby and produced by Sequence), and anime anthology series HALO LEGENDS.

Image via Microsoft

The deal was negotiated by Jordan Fields for Shout! Factory and Jonathan Ford for Content Media.

“We are incredibly excited about this new opportunity with Content Media and Microsoft Studios. The Halo brand is synonymous with high octane action entertainment, and we look forward to delivering these thrilling properties to home entertainment shelves,” stated Jordan Fields, Vice President of Acquisitions at Shout! Factory.

Jonathan Ford at Content Media added, “With its impressive effects, epic storylines and iconic characters, the Halo franchise is a stand-out performer globally, offering exceptional content to existing fans as well as attracting new generations to the Halo universe. We’re very pleased to continue this ongoing success by partnering with Shout! Factory in a deal that will ensure Halo’s potential is fully maximized across North America’s home entertainment market.”

Image via Microsoft

'Adventure Time: The Complete Seventh Season' Arrives on DVD July 18th

The reigning monarch of Candy Kingdom, Princess Bubblegum, is getting her very own personalized DVD cover with the release of Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time: The Complete Seventh Season, available in stores July 18, 2017. The highly-anticipated release will feature 25 episodes from the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning animated series’ seventh season and will include the popular “Stakes” story arc. The DVD is loaded with must-have bonus content that fans and collectors won’t want to miss, including animatics, galleries, song demos, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of “Bad Jubies” and much more!

Join Jake the Dog and Finn the Human as they embark on a set of unforgettable adventures on the seventh season ofAdventure Time. As season seven unfolds, major changes are in store for some of the inhabitants of Candy Kingdom. Princess Bubblegum is exiled to live on the shores of Lake Butterscotch, where she tries to grow a new kingdom made of vegetables. Marceline decides she no longer wants to be a vampire and asks Princess Bubblegum to help her get rid of her vampiric essence. Her quest to become mortal sets off a series of events that are captured in the eight-part “Stakes” story arc. Also included in the season seven release is “Bad Jubies,” the award-winning episode which brings theAdventure Time characters to life in stop-motion animation form.

Image via Cartoon Network

During its seventh season, the “Stakes” story arc was the #1 program in its time period vs. all TV among all key kids and boys. The eight-part story arc, which aired in four parts, ranked as the #1 telecast of the day among boys 6-11 and 9-14. One of Cartoon Network’s most popular programs, Adventure Time originally premiered in 2007. Since its debut, the series has received critical acclaim, earned multiple Emmy awards and has become an enormous hit among audiences of all ages. In 2016, Adventure Time reached 5.5 million kids 6-11 and 23.6 million P2+.  The series has an enormous Facebook following, consisting over 18 million fans.

Adventure Time, Cartoon Network’s Emmy and Peabody Award-winning original animated series introduces viewers to unlikely heroes Finn and Jake, buddies who traverse the mystical Land of Ooo and encounter its colorful inhabitants. The best of friends, our heroes always find themselves in the middle of heart-pounding escapades. Finn, a silly kid with an awesome hat and Jake, a brassy dog with a big kind heart, depend on each other through thick and thin. Adventure Time,currently in production on its final season, is created by Pendleton Ward and is produced at Cartoon Network Studios.

Rooster Teeth's 'RWBY Chibi' Season 2 Trailer Will Melt Your Bones

RWBY Chibi Season 2 will MELT YOUR BONES! Kick off your Summer of Animation with Ruby, Weiss, Blake, Yang, and the rest of the crew as they get into even more adorable hijinks. Premieres May 13 on Rooster Teeth FIRST, and May 20 on YouTube.

And you can get caught up on some of the new faces coming to RWBY Chibi with this handy video:

Salutations! RWBY Chibi is back for a new season of adorable mayhem. Don’t miss Ruby, Weiss, Blake, Yang, Penny, and more!

'The Jellies' Coming to Adult Swim

As Variety reports, Tyler the Creator and his Golf Media creation The Jellies is headed to Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim line-up. The popular rapper / record producer / music-video creator created the 15-minute show along with Lionel Boyce. It follows a jellyfish family and their 16-year-old son Cornell, who learns he was adopted at birth. Shocked, he spirals out of control in an attempt to “find himself,” and his family and friends wind up in “uncanny situations.” The Jellies will premiere this summer.

Tyler, who created the show’s musical score and original composition lends his voice, alongside Boyce, Phil LaMarr, Blake Anderson, AJ Johnson, and Kevin Michael Richardson.

The series joins Samurai Jack, Mike Tyson Mysteries, Rick and Morty, Robot Chicken, Squidbillies, Mr. Pickles, Apollo Gauntlet and Hot Streets.

'Hanazuki: Full of Treasures' Returns May 19th; Season 2 Confirmed

A third wave of episodes for Hasbro’s hit online animated series Hanazuki: Full of Treasures will begin premiering on Friday, May 19th. The final 9 episodes of Season 1 will be released one episode per week leading to the season finale on Friday, July 14th.

Additionally, Hanazuki: Full of Treasures will return for Season 2 in 2018! To celebrate this exciting news, there is a new Hanazuki app available for IOS and Android devices, plus a toy line launching at Target and Justice stores in June. It will feature apparel, accessories, publications, digital gaming, toys, plush items and more than 175 collectible figures.

Hasbro also has a focus on app-connected wearables that let kids express their moods like their pal Hanazuki. These include the Hanazuki Moodgleam Wearable–which lights up and glows different colors according to the “mood” of attached, scannable treasures–and the Hanazuki Moodlight Garden Playset–which can change the color of Hanazuki’s hair, dress, and more by attaching and combining treasures–as Kidscreen reports.

The brand is inspired by character creations originally conceived by Dutch artists Niko Stumpo and Hanneke Metselaar.

GKIDS Brings 'Birdboy: The Forgotten Children' to North American Theaters

GKIDS, the acclaimed producer and distributor of animation for adult and family audiences, announced that it has acquired the North American distribution rights for the animated feature Birdboy: The Forgotten Children. The film, known internationally by its original Spanish title Psiconautas, los niños olvidados, is directed by Alberto Vázquez and Pedro Rivero, and is based on Vázquez’s graphic novel and award-winning short film, Birdboy.

The film, a darkly comic dystopian fantasy featuring adorable anthropomorphic critters, has been a hit on the festival circuit, with official selections including Annecy, BFI London, Fantasia (where it won the Satoshi Kon Award), and San Sebastian, among others. The film took home Best Animated Feature at the 2016 Goya Awards, Spain’s equivalent of the Oscars® (where Vázquez separately won Best Animated Short for his film Decorado), and was one of three nominees for Best Animated Feature at the 2016 European Film Awards. Variety called the film “Remarkable… you’d be hard-pressed to find anything as original or poignant,” while Screen Anarchy called it “A magnificent achievement in animation.”

GKIDS will release the film theatrically in Fall 2017, in both its original Spanish and a new English language version. The film was produced by Farruco Castromán, Carlos Juárez and Luis Tosar.

Image via GKIDS

Here’s the synopsis:

There is light and beauty, even in the darkest of worlds.  


Stranded on an island in a post-apocalyptic world, teenager Dinky and her friends hatch a dangerous plan to escape in the hope of finding a better life.  Meanwhile, her old friend Birdboy has shut himself off from the world, pursued by the police and haunted by demon tormentors.


But unbeknownst to anyone, he contains a secret inside him that could change the world forever.


Based on his own graphic novel, Alberto Vázquez’s Birdboy: The Forgotten Children is a darkly comic, mind-bending fantasy.  Gorgeous graphic imagery brings to life a surreal and discordant world populated by adorable (and adorably disturbed) animated critters, searching for hope and love amid the ruin.

Image via GKIDS

Image via GKIDS

Image via GKIDS

Image via GKIDS

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