In 1995, DIC Entertainment inked a licensing deal with Toei and Kodansha. Marvel was building the $3.3 billion in market capitalization that would eventually bankrupt it. Disney acquired Capital Cities and the ABC Television Network. Pixar released Toy Story. An author named J.K. Rowling had just received her 12th rejection letter. Cartoon Network was building the original productions that would lead to Toonami. George Lucas had re-released Star Wars and was dreaming of prequels and a Japanese man with an interest in insects was about to invent something called a "pocket monster."
All of them had one thing in common. Her name was Sailor Moon.
-- Chapter Sixteen: "How Sailor Moon Almost Ruled the Universe"
Discover the thrilling secret history of the worldwide anime revolution in this one-of-a-kind chronicle of Naoko Takeuchi's international triumph and the most influential animated television series in the last 30 years!
Journalist, author and former DIC Entertainment interactive marketing consultant Shane Lochlann Black brings together entertainment executives, national correspondents and bestselling authors, including two-time Emmy® Award winning former DIC Entertainment Chairman and CEO Andy Heyward, Irwin Toy CEO George Irwin and key personalities in the English-language anime fan communities across the United States and Canada to look back at the struggles and victories of one man and his vision for the future of animated children's television.
Did Disney own Sailor Moon for five years and not know it? What is the secret connection between Sailor Moon and the Power Rangers? Did Sailor Moon influence the decision to license Harry Potter in the United States? Was it really a Cartoon Network show that helped properties like The Avengers and World of Warcraft build multi-billion dollar markets worldwide? Was a 14-year-old superhero really part of the second-largest corporate merger in history? Did Sailor Moon really help make Cartoon Network the #1 cable channel in America? Was Sailor Moon the original Disney Princess?
It's 2023. Pokemon is worth more than $120 billion. The worldwide anime licensing market is nearly a quarter trillion dollars. The Marvel Cinematic Universe will influence filmmaking for the next 200 years. Billions have been spent trying to recapture the magic of the late 1990s on streaming, cable, mobile devices and YouTube. Girl heroes are everywhere, but none compare to the clumsy 14-year-old who not only saved the world, but saved a half-dozen companies from unspeakable disasters of their own making.
It wasn't always this way.
Was it all because of Sailor Moon?