Saturday, December 20, 2008

Post NYAF 2008 with Adam Sheehan

Check out my Pre-Anime Festival with FUNimation.

I present to you Adam Sheehan the Senior Events Manager and Brand Manager for FUNimation Entertainment. I spoke to him before the festival about his work there and what he hopes to happen. Let’s see if anything he expected and did not expect came true.

New York Anime Festival 2008 is over. So what were his overall impressions? “It was a great show that’s growth impresses us once again.” According to Adam, FUNimation’s presence was “even better than last year.” They had some huge events related to Claymore, Ouran High School Host Club, and Darker Than Black and “all were great successes.” They will definitely be back for NYAF 2009.

Since Adam has been to both 2007 and 2008 NYAF, I wanted to know what were the differences and similarities of FUNimation’s presentation and the festival itself. “For both shows we kept the similar push for key shows releasing around that time.” At the NYAF 2007 FUNimation was promoting their One Piece release, but for 2008 NYAF they were promoting Claymore and Darker Than Black. When it came to shopping ease, their booth set-up became a “lot more shopper friendly with some key new elements purchased earlier in the year.” The change in presentation and keeping the similarities was an important contribution to FUNimation’s presence. “The importance of keeping a similar booth plan but tweaking a few items helps greatly since the fans will have some idea of what to expect but at the same time will always be able to find something new.” In regards to comparing and contrasting the festival for 2007 and 2008, the difference Adam saw was the size of the event. Comparing to last year the attendees were much “more excited.” Both festivals “ran well,” so that “didn’t need to change.”

Back to NYAF 2008. Adam arrived the day before the show began at around noon. When he reached the the floor of the exhibition hall his first thought was : “there is a lot to do.” (^_^) So why did he think this? “When we first arrive the booth is just a black spot on the floor with a big crate next to it.” The emptiness must be filled with the presence of FUNimation power!
So it was time to fill up the emptiness. After the set up it was time for the show. On Friday, it was a “steadily” start, but it “picked up a lot near the end.” On Saturday, it was “insanely busy from beginning to end.” I guess there was no bathroom break… The last day, it “was very full with fans who were trying to catch everything they missed in the last two days.” Lucky for Adam, he did not leave New York City until Monday morning, so he had time to rest. “I wasn’t as tired as I could have been.”
Last time we spoke, Adam said he was overseeing a couple of panels. So, how did they go? According to Adam, “all of our panels went very well and were well attended.” There was a “really strong” fan reaction to their Darker Than Black premier and the panel. Many of the fans that have seen a subtitled version of the show gave a positive reaction. They “loved it even more with the English language track.”

I remember him being worried about the weather in NYC. So I had to ask was too cold for you? This is what he said “(laughing out loud) I was more worried for my girlfriend since she’s from Vegas and doesn’t do well with the cold. I love it since I’m originally from the east coast. Show wise the weather didn’t affect anything luckily.”

Ok remember Adam mention big surprises. Boy was I surprised! My biggest surprise was the nice sword they were displaying. I didn’t think it was gonna be that huge! According to Adam, “we are big fans of the Claymore sword as well. We had to make it so big to watch the size of the series.” There were two big FUNimation announcements during the festival. One announcement was about the acquirement of the live Action Mushi shi movie. Another announcement was that FUNimation would be bringing Ouran High School Host Club to the FUNimation Channel. “The fans were very happy with both announcements and were asking for more details as soon as we have them.”
With all the surprises, process and presence of FUNimation he was focused on, he really did not have time to attend non-FUNimation events and activities. “I barely have time to manage all the FUNimation activates and the booth so usually I never get a chance to see anything else the show has to offer.” From different fans that had attended some of the events they “seemed very happy.”

Even though his priority was FUNimation, did he want anything at the festival that was not there? “(☺) Not really, it’s a great show that is sure to keep growing each year and we are happy to be part of that growth.” The attendance for the festival was met. “They managed to get more people this year which allows us to do more things at the show.”

For Adam, the most memorable moment at the festival was the Darker Than Black event. “We had a whole viral campaign with different characters from the show interacting with fans at the show and it was great to see this all come together and the fans excitement of being part of it.” He would “absolutely” relive the moment of the festival, because “it was a great show.”

Adam’s final words: “Just that everyone should stay close to or where ever they get there anime new from for new and exciting developments in the near future.”

Thank you Adam for helping me out again! If you want to learn more about FUNimation Entertainment please visit
Photograph of the FUNimation Entertainment NYAF 2008 Booth by Linda Thai.
© 2008 Linda Thai

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