A year ago: the Tokyo International Anime Fair

Every year, the Tokyo International Anime Fair gathers the different organizations and companies behind many of Japan’s anime and manga titles. Considered one of the largest anime trade fairs in the world, it is usually held for four days, in the latter part of March, in Tokyo Big Sight in Odaiba. The first two days are reserved for industry people and the press, then it opens to the public on the third and fourth day (typically on a weekend).

We got to go last year and being curious as to how it was going to turn out this year I searched online for news on the 2011 fair, which was slated for March 24 to 27. With the earthquake and tsunami that recently devastated parts of Japan however, it wasn’t surprising that they cancelled this year’s fair. For those who were planning to attend the fair for the first time this year, here are some anime fair photos–though they are from the 2010 exhibition, I hope it gives you an idea on what goes on inside this anime heaven of an event.

Fans of all ages (from kids excited to see Chibi Maruko-chan to grown ups drooling over the displays) get a chance to find out new things being planned for their favorite anime series, buy some spanking new merchandise, gape at the awesome sight of some life-sized anime characters up close, and just bask in the fun, crazy, and wonderful world of anime. (All photos were taken by the hubby)

Enter the hall of happiness

One of the things I first saw when I entered the exhibition hall--a huge inflatable Totoro hanging over the Studio Ghibli booth

tokyo anime fair

For the hubby, it was seeing these Garo display for its 3D movie (oh and everything else, he says)

Optimus Prime from the recent version of the classic animated series

Naruto and Kakashi sighting

Guys get photos with girls in cosplay

Girls cozy up to childhood favorite Anpanman

And kids also get some precious camera time with their favorite characters (I have to admit, I was not familiar with most of the anime characters I saw)

Aside from cosplayers and anime mascots walking the grounds of the exhibition hall, you can also check out booths geared toward anime fans who are seriously considering a career in animation, like the Tokyo and Osaka Animation Colleges booth. (It will make more sense though if you can understand Japanese.)

Inside the booth of the Tokyo and Osaka Animation Colleges

Get a clue on how they do it...

Skilled fans try their hand at drawing their favorite anime

Others try their hand, er voice, at dubbing an anime series

You can also drool over some anime collectibles and merchandise. Most are not for sale (like the Gundam units) but there are some you can  play with right there (like the Bakugan toys). There are also a lot of girls handing out flyers, bags, balloons and other little knickknacks.

Bakugan toys

Time to play with Bakugan

Gundam toys in display. The hubby was drooling.

Cute stuffed kitty toys!

Cute Japanese girl giving away some free bags where you can put all your loot

Anime merch for Lupin III and a panda I'm not familiar with (oh and another cute Japanese girl)


11 thoughts on “A year ago: the Tokyo International Anime Fair

  1. Believe it or not, I have never been to one of these! I was hoping to go this time but maybe next year instead then? Great fun photos! (^-^)/

    • Hi Fritz! It’s so weird–I was just looking at your blog earlier. I love your photos especially that of the dolls, so creepy and beautiful at the same time 🙂

      I had fun in last year’s fair, though I have to admit some anime just went over my head. Also, seeing that large Totoro was good enough for me, haha!

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