Designed to be the ultimate celebration of anime and Japanese culture, Madman Anime Festival will debut later this year in Melbourne. Held on 3 and 4 September at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, the event is a collaboration between Madman and Animelab.
What can you expect? Think international guests and exhibitors, cosplay, live stage performances, pop-up shops, screenings, and "exclusive anime events".
"Madman was founded because we loved anime and wanted to share it with audiences in Australia," Co-Founder and Managing Director of Madman Entertainment, Tim Anderson, said in a statement.
"Our twentieth birthday is this year and we could think of no better way of celebrating it than creating an amazing event to bring Australian fans even closer to the genre we all love. We are working hard with Madman’s many partners and contacts to make this event truly an exceptional one!"
Confirmed special guests so far include Yuko Miyamura (Asuka Langley in Neon Genesis Evangelion ) and Tiffany Grant (Nojiko in One Piece , Martel in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood ) with "many more notable names in Japanese anime and pop culture to be announced".
Gaming will get a look in too, with Bandai Namco locked in to have games from Square Enix and NIS America on show.
The Tokyo Ghoul Art Exhibition will be there in an Australian first, featuring original storyboards, sketches, character settings and more straight from the production studio.
The Victorian preliminary round of the Madman National Cosplay Championship will be held at the event, with the winner going on to the finals at Supanova Expo Brisbane in November.
Price-wise, you're looking at $40 for a single day pass, $60 for a weekend pass or $290 for one of 200 limited "Madman MegaFan" passes — which get you premium seating in AnimeLab Arena, access to the concierge hotline and VIP lounge, a priority queue for special guest autographs, early access to exhibition hall and a merchandise pack.
Tickets for the expo will go on sale today, 22 March.