Manga and Japanese wrestling to draw Paris crowds

9th June 2008, Comments 0 comments

Fans of all things Japanese will be delighted at a four-day Paris exhibition of manga comics, Tokyo pop, video gaming, fashion and wrestling.

9 June 2008

PARIS - French fans of all things Japanese are expected in their thousands early next month at a four-day Paris extravaganza of manga comics, anime, Tokyo pop, video gaming, fashion - and wrestling.

Organisers said Friday they hoped to draw some 100,000 visitors for the ninth edition of Japan Expo, a celebration of Japanese pop culture held from 3 to 6 July in a vast conference hall north of the French capital.

Dozens of established and aspiring manga artists will have their work on display, with guests from Japan including artists, game creators and live music acts ranging from punk rock to pop and electro.

Traditional Asian culture will also get a look in with stalls on flower arranging, sudoku, the art of Zen, or the ancient board game of Go.

Contests will be held for the best cartoon character costumes and amateur manga comic strips, in the vast hall mingling gaming, drawing contests, martial arts, gigs and fashion shows.

"The success of Japanese popular culture, of manga and anime has become a truly global phenomenon. But is especially remarkable here in France," Juichi Takahara, minister of the Japanese embassy in Paris, told a press conference.

An entire French generation was reared on diet of Japanese animated television cartoons, and today one in two French children is estimated to have read at least one manga comic.

Mangas account for 40 percent of all comics sold in France today, up from only 19 percent in 2003.

This year's Japan Expo also coincides with the 150th anniversary of French and Japanese diplomatic relations.

[AFP / Expatica]

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