Thursday, July 22, 2010

Anime Expo 2010: Danny Choo


Hmmm...time after AX has been very busy...I gotta catch up with the blog...I hope someone took video of the Tokyo Stormtrooper at the AX Opening Ceremony...

Anyway, I first was introduced to Danny Choo's site when I discovered a K-On! video on YouTube. After checking out the site, I was intrigued about the story of how an ex-pat built a successful empire around his passions...Which was what some of his panel the next day was about...


You can search for video of his talk of how he grew up as the son of famed shoe designer Jimmy Choo in the UK who took Japanese classes, worked in Japanese places such as Benihana and a Japanese airline (ANA or JAL, I couldn't remember), and how ambition and luck landed him his first job in Japan and ultimately how he became a well known otaku in the English/Japanese speaking world...

I guess daughters show up wherever he goes:



And when there are daughters, there are cameko...



So his first panel was one of those inspirational talks with a dose of reality of what it takes for a foreigner to live in Japan...

The next day was the Los Angeles CGM (Consumer Generated Media) Night in association with Fakku (NSFW) at the ESPN Zone next door. It definitely was gonna be a crowded night:





So crowded that the second level was filled up:



Danny and Jacob from Fakku kicking off the afternoon...



Also some more daughters showed up...



Because of the crowd, pretty much everyone was introduced to someone new as he or she most likely had to share a booth or table with strangers...my booth had all guys, one from Arizona, another from the Bay Area, a college kid from L.A., and a high school student also from the area...because I was just curious, I started off the conversation about Arizona's immigration law...then the conversation went into anime, Texas Hold-Em (since the L.A. college student switched the channel on the monitor in our booth to a World Series of Poker tournament), and prolly a lot of other topics, but it was good to take a break from talking about anime at an anime convention once in a while...

Pretty much Danny was busy having his picture taken with fans...





After about what seemed to be two hours, I left for the bar to get dinner, where I conversed with two other guys about anime, and then checked out the AX Idol contest going on outside in Nokia Plaza. After AX Idol, I turned around, and it looked like the party moved outside...





And there appeared proof that imitation is the best form of flattery...



On the last day at Danny's second panel (with more daughters...)



He showed some clips from Black Rock Shooter and from his new show Culture: Japan. There were definitely looks of amazement when videos from otaku rooms were shown, particularly one from the Philippines. What also got some laughs was the Tokyo Stormtrooper's visit to a Japanese high school (I hope the show is broadcast in the U.S.)...I was training to win a freebie at this second panel as I lost the rock/paper/scissors contest in Danny's previous panel...Unfortnately, as the Black Rock Shooter Figure wasn't released yet, the winner was gonna be picked at random from a tagged photo he posted on his site after AX (unfortunately, I couldn't find my face in the crowd...).

So after meeting Danny Choo in real life, I admire his passion to share his interests in many forms through his site and other media ventures...I hope he holds a CGM night at Anime Expo next year, especially since it will be the 20th...

Oh, before I forget...in emails leading up to the CGM Night, Danny did suggest that people bring meishi (name cards) to the event...I'm happy I was able to exchange one of my mini-cards for his card:



And it's autographed...



Up next, some short subjects from AX, like taiko...

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