Press Release from VIZ Media, LLC
San Francisco, CA, April 13, 2009 -- VIZ Media, LLC., one of the entertainment industry's most innovative and comprehensive publishing, animation and licensing companies has announced the availability of English dubbed uncut episodes of NARUTO anime on Joost.com and Hulu.com beginning on April 15th. Joost and Hulu are both online video services that offer hit TV shows, movies and clips -- all for free. The first five episodes of NARUTO (English dubbed) will launch on April 15 with a new English dubbed episode launching every Wednesday thereafter. Each episode will stream on both Joost (US and Canada) and Hulu (US) for approximately 5 weeks then rotate off the site making room for the next new episodes.
Joost is a global service with more than 48,000 program elements from more than 300 content partners, including more than 400 television series, 1,200 movie and short film titles and 15,000 music videos. Hulu has more than 41,000 video assets from more than 140 content partners and offers nearly 1,300 show and movie titles, including 300 full-length feature films and 550 television series, with hundreds of videos added to the service each week. NARUTO subtitled versions launched on both Joost and Hulu in September 2008.
The launch of the NARUTO English dubbed episodes is the latest expansion of VIZ Media's ongoing plan to make available a variety of hit animated series through some of the most innovative web-based, video streaming outlets. Joost and Hulu both provide convenient 24/7 accessibility and offer users the freedom to legally share full-length episodes or clips via e-mail or embed them on other web sites, blogs and social networking pages.
NARUTO has emerged as one of the world's most popular Japanese animated series, attracting millions of devoted viewers with a blend of stylish animation, multi-faceted characters and riveting story lines. This animation is based on the popular manga series and enjoys tremendous international popularity. In North America, NARUTO (rated TV-14) has become the hottest animated series and is one of VIZ Media's most successful manga and animated properties in terms of sales.
Created by Masashi Kishimoto, NARUTO depicts the adventures of a young boy named Uzumaki Naruto who trains to become a ninja. The boy is cursed with the spirit of a nine-tailed fox demon and is forced to live a bullied life discriminated against by his fellow villagers. Naruto is resilient and undaunted in his quest to become a master ninja and his determination often inspires those around him. Through amazing adventures, the young ninja learns the importance of friendship, teamwork, loyalty, hard work, creativity, ingenuity, and right vs. wrong. Dedicated website at www.naruto.com.
"We're very excited to launch uncut dubbed NARUTO episodes on both Joost and Hulu and offer fans the opportunity to watch their favorite ninja online for free anytime," says Ken Sasaki, Vice President, Strategy & Business Development, VIZ Media. "The availability of these episodes, uncut and featuring a very talented English voice cast, will undoubtedly help grow the online audience for NARUTO and also attract many new viewers. Joost and Hulu both offer dedicated anime channels with a variety of VIZ Media offerings, and we invite fans to visit each Wednesday for a fun new adventure featuring the world's most popular ninja!"
To view NARUTO English dubbed uncut episodes, please visit Joost.com and/or Hulu.com beginning April 15.
For more information on NARUTO and to view free episodes of NARUTO Shippuden animation (English Subtitled) please visit www.Naruto.com.
About VIZ Media, LLCHeadquartered in San Francisco, CA, VIZ Media, LLC (VIZ Media), is one of the most comprehensive and innovative companies in the field of manga (graphic novel) publishing, animation and entertainment licensing of Japanese content. Owned by three of Japan's largest creators and licensors of manga and animation, Shueisha Inc., Shogakukan Inc., and Shogakukan-Shueisha Productions, Co., Ltd., VIZ Media is a leader in the publishing and distribution of Japanese manga for English speaking audiences in North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa and is a global ex-Asia licensor of Japanese manga and animation. The company offers an integrated product line including magazines such as SHONEN JUMP and SHOJO BEAT, graphic novels, and DVDs, and develops, markets, licenses, and distributes animated entertainment for audiences and consumers of all ages. Contact VIZ Media at 295 Bay Street, San Francisco, CA 94133; Phone (415) 546-7073; Fax (415) 546-7086; and web site at www.VIZ.com.