"Pokemon" and "Yu-Gi-Oh" have helped bring Japanese animation into American pop culture, and a convention debuting this weekend will cater to local fans of the stylized technique.
Anime Blast Chattanooga starts today at the Chattanooga Convention Center, 1 Carter Plaza.
Guests will include three voice actors whose credits include dozens of top titles, as well as two bands with gaming cred.
Programming over the three days includes Q&A panels and autograph sessions with the guests, a masquerade ball, concerts and cosplay fashion show with entries based on fashions inspired by anime characters.
Among those taking part is Ali Banks, head of the anime club at Chattanooga Public Library, which offers monthly programming, Anime@theLibrary, aimed at adults and young adults.
Todd Haberkorn: Credits include voicing lead roles in "Sgt. Frog," "Suzuka," "Ghost Hunt," "Claymore," "Holic," "D. Gray Man," "Sands of Destruction" and "Soul Eater."
Colleen Clinkenbeard: Voice actor, ADR director, ADR scriptwriter and line producer for Funimation Productions with multiple credits, including the soon-to-be-released "Dragonball Z Kai."
Eric Stuart: Singer/songwriter has toured as a solo artist and with rock legends Peter Frampton, Ringo Starr and Lynyrd Skynyrd, all while continuing a voice acting/directing career that includes hit shows "Pokemon" and "Yu-Gi-Oh."
The Man Power: Nashville band is a cross between glam rock, three-chord punk and Saturday morning cartoons. It has shared the stage with Tiffany, Peelander-Z, The Protomen and The Saints. Their debut full-length record was titled "Hide Your Daughter and Get Your Earplugs Here Comes The Man Power."
My Parents Favorite Music: Creating music since 2000, the band has released three independent albums with topics centered on video gaming but spanning the spectrum of nerd and hip-hop culture.