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Profiles in Anime: Jeremy Johnson
By Chris Beveridge
June 15, 1998
Position in Pioneer:
What does that position entail?:
I was hired to design and work on Pioneer Animation's DVDs. My specific responsibilities include creating the menus, working with the producers to decide what will go on each title, reviewing DVD emulation and check disks for final release, and making sure everything involving the physical disk gets done.
Favourite Anime (DVD or non):
In no particular order - Gundam, Patlabor, Escaflowne, Macross, Kimagure Orange Road, Maison Ikkoku, Record of the Lodoss War, Bubblegum Crisis, Cha-Cha (just to hit the highlights... I have a lot of "favorites" ^_^).
Favourite DVD Hollywood movie:
What got you into anime? What's the attraction?::
Starblazers, Battle of the Planets, Robotech... I was exposed to all the early 2nd generation influences. What finally grabbed and held me in anime was a college summer back in 1992 when I watched all of KOR and 0083: Stardust Memories at a friend's house. After that I was hooked.
I've always admired anime's freedom in storytelling. I can't see shows like Escaflowne, Evangelion, or Rurouni Kenshin being produced and released in the States, at least not with current mass market attitudes toward animation. It's that willingness to push the envelope and entertain the audience with no thought of "this is just animation - we can't do 'X'", that continually surprises and stimulates me.
What got you into DVD? What's the attraction?:
I'd been a fan of LD for a while when DVD came out. Like others, I initially resisted the format change. I can remember one day when I walked into Ken Crane's and saw "Mars Attacks!" playing on a big screen. They must have been using a first generation player, because the pixelization was terrible. I thought DVD could never replace LD with that kind of video quality. Later when I saw all the features DVD had and got a chance to see a movie on a better player, I was quickly "converted." DVD has so many features previous formats lacked or failed to exploit that I couldn't help but be attracted.
What do you see as the future of anime and DVD?:
Definite growth. DVD anime will replace and surpass LD anime. Even the Japanese are pressing DVD (though the jury is still out on that market). I'm confident it will be a long term format.
Most cherished anime toy or possession?:
My favorite toy would have to be a pair of Zaku and Hy-Gog UFO Catcher Dolls a friend picked up from Mandarake USA for me while we were visiting Comic Con International last year.
My prized possession is an 0083 LD Collection (which is nearing completion).
After working on the Tenchi Encyclopedia, does Ryo-ohki's "miyaa!" haunt your sleep?:
[Laugh] No, but playing "Boku wa Motto Pioneer" ("I'm a Pioneer") is a sure way to send Akane's Hammer flying from my direction. ^_^