• Kyodo


A San Francisco-based publisher of Japanese animation and comics for English-speaking readers announced Monday it will start publishing in November a U.S. version of Japan’s Weekly Jump comic magazine.

Viz Communications Inc., itself a subsidiary of Japanese publisher Shogakukan Inc., will translate and publish a selected assortment of comic series that are popular in Japan in the form of an English-language monthly magazine, it said. Weekly Jump is produced by Tokyo-based Shueisha Inc.

The company said it hopes to see the magazine’s monthly circulation reach 1 million copies in three years’ time, adding that it plans to target males aged 8 to 16 as the monthly’s main readers.

Viz will distribute the comic via such venues as bookstores, newsstands and kiosks throughout the United States.

At present, the Japanese-language weekly version of the comic has a circulation of 3.4 million copies.

The decision to publish the monthly stems from the increasing popularity of Japanese television animation and comics in the U.S., Viz officials said.

The planned U.S. periodical will carry English translations of such popular comic series as “Dragon Ball” and “Yu-Gi-Oh.”

The U.S. price of the monthly has not yet been determined, Viz said. The Japanese weekly sells for 220 yen a copy.

Viz plans to take in advertising revenues from the publications in addition to subscription fee revenues, it added.

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