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William Morris Agency Signs Manga Giant TOKYOPOP

The William Morris Agency (WMA) has signed TOKYOPOP, the leading publisher of manga graphic novels in North America and largest supplier of manga entertainment in the world. WMA will represent TOKYOPOP's original intellectual properties for film, television, digital, merchandising and game development.

"WMA's partnership with TOKYOPOP presents a fresh opportunity for our clients and TOKYOPOP to create new characters and ideas through the dynamic world of manga," said WMA president Dave Wirtschafter. "Our agency's resources coupled with the unique world of TOKYOPOP, allows for a global exchange between traditional content creators and manga, anime and beyond."

âWe are excited to join forces with WMA, as we further develop the TOKYOPOP brand worldwide,â said Stu Levy, TOKYOPOP ceo/cco. âThis partnership takes us one step closer to realizing our dream of merging the leading edge of manga entertainment with Hollywood.â TOKYOPOP celebrates its 10-year anniversary in 2007.

The newly formed TOKYOPOP Pictures is off and running with creative executive Noah Stern onboard and Levy at the helm. Film projects in development include, LAMENT OF THE LAMB, a gut-wrenching horror story of a young man who shockingly discovers he may be the last in a bloodline of vampires, and THE AI-LAND CHRONICLES, a groundbreaking blend of live action and animation based on the company's successful manga franchise, Princess Ai.

TOKYOPOP is hailed as a leading youth-oriented entertainment brand and an innovator of manga creation, with a revolutionary artistic vision that transcends countless platforms. From the introduction of the first-ever extensive manga publishing program in North America, to the development of its manga-originated intellectual properties into film, television and digital entertainment, TOKYOPOP has changed the way teens experience pop culture. The company's global reach has expanded to Europe and Asia, with recent offices opening in the U.K. and Germany and partnerships in Australia and China, in addition to its original Los Angeles and Tokyo operations. With millions of fans logging onto the new social networking site, reading its books, and watching its DVDs and television programs, TOKYOPOP's award-winning catalogue of licensed and original properties has made the company a visionary in an ever-growing teen entertainment marketplace.